Published: 17th November 2023
UGC's draft PG norms may allow one-year master's degrees, flexibility to change discipline
This draft curriculum framework for PG courses prepared by the University Grants Commission will be put out in the public domain soon
The draft University Grants Commission (UGC) norms on postgraduate (PG) courses might allow students pursuing four-year undergraduate (UG) degrees to take up a one-year master's porgramme. Additionally, all PG students will be able to change disciplines or switch to alternative modes of learning, including offline, distance, online and hybrid modes.
This draft curriculum and credit framework for PG courses prepared by the UGC will be put out in the public domain soon. It is based on the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020, which suggests a one-year master's programme for students completing a four-year bachelor's programme with honours or honours with research, as per a report by PTI.
"Seemingly it appears there are three designs of PG such as 1-year master, 2-year master, and an integrated 5-year programme. However, given that in 4-year UG there are bachelor's (Hons) and bachelors (Hons with Research), creditization of work experience, combinations of disciplines with emerging subjects such as AI, Machine Learning, etc makes the number of curricular frameworks much higher. Accordingly, the higher education institutions prepare the curriculum as per the graduate attributes of the programme," the draft UGC norms said.
"A student is eligible for a master's programme in a discipline corresponding to either major or minor(s) discipline in UG programme. In this case, the University can admit the students in the master's programme based on the student's performance in the UG programme or through an entrance examination," it added.
"However, irrespective of the major or minor disciplines chosen by a student in a UG programme, a student is eligible for admission in any discipline of Master's programmes if the student qualifies the National level or University level entrance examination in the discipline of the Master's programme," the draft norms said further.
UGC has also proposed enabling students who completed a four-year UG, three-year UG, two-year PG or five-year integrated programmes (UG PG) in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) subjects to be eligible for admissions into ME, MTech and allied areas. Students taking up a two-year PG programme have additionally been provided an exit option after the first year. Such students will be awarded a postgraduate diploma.
"The first degree often makes students think of a different career path that requires a change of subject. Changing direction with a postgraduate degree has its challenges, but NEP gives enough freedom to make it a possibility," the draft reads, as per PTI.
"Irrespective of the major or minor disciplines chosen by a student in a UG programme, a student is eligible for admission in any discipline of Master's programmes if the student qualifies the National level or University level entrance examination in the discipline of the Master's programme,” it adds.