The education ministry will soon set up a formal structure for collaboration between Indian and foreign institutes on dual degrees and joint degrees.
In a draft proposal, the ministry has said that such schemes will enable students to study in India and abroad, as part of their degree programmes.
Under the plan, institutes with higher rankings in the national and international lists, will be able to tie up without taking an approval from the University Grants Commission (UGC). However, the others will need the statutory body’s approval for such an arrangement.
The government has said that no programme of study and/or research can be offered, which is against national security and territorial integrity of India.
Students stand to benefit since they would be eligible to get degrees from Indian and international institutes. This would help them improve their job prospects as well as get access to superior research facilities. This is part of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 implementation.
Moneycontrol gives you a lowdown on how the new collaboration system will work.
The twinning arrangement will be collaborative where students enrolled with an Indian higher education institution can undertake their programme of study partly in India, complying with relevant UGC regulations, and the rest in a foreign higher education institution.
But the degree or diploma offered under such a twinning arrangement will be given by the Indian higher education institution.
Under these twinning arrangements, credits earned by students at a foreign education institution will be counted towards the degree/diploma awarded by the Indian higher education institution.
Joint degree programmes
In a joint degree programme, the curriculum will be designed jointly by the collaborating Indian and the foreign higher educational institutions.
The degree, a joint one by the Indian and foreign institute, will have a single certificate, which will include both their logos. Under this plan, the students have to earn at least 30 percent of the total credits from both the Indian and the foreign higher education institution.
In this case, the final degrees will be conferred by the Indian and foreign higher education institutions, separately and simultaneously, upon completion of degree requirements of both the institutions.
Prospective students have to meet the admission eligibility of both Indian and foreign institutions and have to apply to and be admitted separately, to both the institutions.
The students have to earn at least 50 percent of total credits from the Indian institution. In case of a doctoral degree programme, they need to have a supervisor at each institution. However, the student has to submit a single thesis.
How and when will this be implemented?
All stakeholders have time till March 15 to submit their recommendations on these proposals. There will be an automatic mode and an approval mode. The approval for these collaborations will be granted by the UGC for five years at a time, which can be renewed.
To be considered under the automatic mode, the Indian institution should be National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) – empowered with a minimum score of 3.01 on a 4-point scale (at the time of application) or must figure in the top 100 in University category of the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) at the time of application, or shall be an Institution of Eminence.
Here, any higher foreign education institution should be part of the top 500 of Times Higher Education or QS World University ranking at the time of application. Under the automatic mode, UGC will give its nod for the collaborations without any further processing on receipt of the documents online.
Under the approval mode, the institutions have to first apply online. The expert committee of UGC will consider the proposal taking various factors into account while evaluating the applications. These include credibility of the institutions, faculty, student, research profile, infrastructural resources available and the quality of academic programmes, among other criteria.