Universities at an impasse on dual degree studies


Hyderabad: After years of dithering, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has allowed students to pursue two degrees at the same time. Now, with the ball in the court of state universities, doubts are being cast over their ability to pull their socks off to give effect and help students make the most of new UGC guidelines to enable them to pursue simultaneously dual degree studies. It can be mentioned here that until now, state universities, supported by public policies of successive governments and statutory regulatory authorities, only allowed students of technology and engineering studies, like B Tech, M Tech, to pursue multiple skills and knowledge. vertical.

However, when it came to students in other majors, like arts, commerce, humanities and related studies, they were prohibited from taking different courses, including through ODL and online. Moreover, it is considered illegal.

Speaking to The Hans India, a senior official from Osmania University said, “A few cases have been reported in which students who were regularly taking a course in the university departments were also taking another course concurrently. were called and asked to either drop the extra classes or have their admission to the university revoked.”

However, everyone knows that there are hundreds of students who have taken diploma or post-graduate courses, or short courses in ODL mode, either by taking regular courses before or after their university studies. It is not uncommon for students pursuing law studies in a regular stream to also take the ACS (Associate Company Secretary) course.

“On the one hand, state universities and state governments and regulatory authorities continue with the relics of the colonial education system declaring that what some are doing is illegal. At the same time, it is permissible, since the boom of information technology, allowing students of engineering and related studies to take a number of courses in different IT and related sectors in the form of certifications,” said a former official of the State Council of the Andhra Pradesh Higher Education (APSCHE) Regarding these rules, AP and TS have followed the same standards with just a difference in degree, making some changes here and there.

Now, the new UGC guidelines provide “no strict separation between arts and sciences, between curricular and extracurricular activities, between professional and academic streams in order to eliminate harmful hierarchies and silos between different fields. of learning”.

This aside the UGC guidelines suggest a multidisciplinary and holistic education across the sciences, social sciences, arts, humanities and sports for a multidisciplinary world to ensure unity and integrity knowledge is the new order of the education system in the country. As a result, the state universities of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, including those of technical, medical and agricultural universities, must now roll up their sleeves to break the silo mentality to forge a stronger and more collaborative approach. between different departments, colleges and both conventional and unconventional universities.

For this, “state universities needed much-needed support from the state Department of Education (SED) and state governments to give effect to the new guidelines,” said a senior professor at the University College of Science. and technologies of Andhra, in Visakhapatnam.

The reason is that it has to change, including the schedules, every semester considering the number of students from other branches opting for a specific course offered by each department. It is added to the management of the classes of the regular courses given in the departments.

Expressing a similar view, officials from OU and Kakatiya University (Telangana) and Nagarjuna and Sri Venkateswara University (AP) pointed out that currently universities receive fee reimbursements of the state government. Now, pursuing a second degree is permitted, and whether the state government will provide fee reimbursement for the second degree remains a big issue.

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