Students across India will soon be able to pursue dual degrees simultaneously in same or diverse streams at the college and university level, with the University Grants Commission (UGC) approving of the same, as per official sources.
However, of the two degree courses, one must be pursued on a regular scale while the other through an online distance learning (ODL) mode, according to the UGC proposal.
Speaking of the same, Rajnish Jain, UGC Secretary told PTI, "The proposal was approved in the recent commission meeting for simultaneous dual degrees for students in India, allowing students to complete courses in the same or different streams at the same time. One of the two degrees, however, has to be through regular mode and the other has to be through online distance learning".
An official notification regarding the exact modalities of the proposal will be issued soon, the UGC Secretary added.
The recent nod by UGC is an outcome of the efforts of a committee headed by its Vice Chairman, Bhushan Patwardhan, formed last year to look into the issue of perusal of double degree courses simultaneously in same or different streams at the same university or different universities either through online, distance or part-time mode.
This, however, is not the first instance of dual degree courses being mooted. The UGC had set up a panel in 2012 headed by Furqan Qamar, then Vice-Chancellor of Hyderabad University, which had recommended allowing students to pursue dual degree programmes simultaneously through distance or open mode from same or different university.
The panel's recommendations, however, failed to see the light of day as it was not endorsed by the statutory councils.
According to UGC officials, "The commission had then sought comments of the statutory councils on the committee's report and the responses received did not endorse the idea of allowing students to pursue multiple degree programmes simultaneously. Hence the plan did not take off".
The recent approval by the University Grants Commission (UGC) signals of glad tidings for scores of students, who wish to pursue an academic career in diverse streams, while saving enough time on their side.