The University Grants Commission (UGC) has published a notice and sent to 12 stand-alone institutions to get them converted as a university or deemed to be University if they are willing to offer programs through Distance and Online Mode.
However in recent Supreme Court order also states that Deemed to be Universities are not allowed to run Distance Learning Course from 2018-2019. Moreover Deemed Universities have been asked to remove the “University” within one month of issuance of the order.
UGC has made amendments in the Open and Distance Learning Regulations, 2017 asking Stand-alone institutions offering Certificate, Diploma or PG Diploma to get themselves recognized as per new rules. In a letter, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has informed these institutes that it has amended the University Grants Commission (Open and Distance Learning) Regulations, 2017. “Certificates or diplomas or postgraduate diplomas awarded by the standalone institutions… shall remain valid… till the academic year 2017-18, and thereafter they shall be free to get their status converted to university or deemed-to-be university…, failing which the Commission shall not accord any approval to the open and distance learning programmes of standalone institutions,” UGC Secretary P.K. Thakur said.
The 12 institutions that have been referred here are All India Management Association (AIMA), Institute of Rail Technology (IRT), TECNIA Institute of Advanced Studies, IFIM Business School, Symbiosis Centre of Distance Learning, MIT School of Distance Education, Indian Institute of Material Management, Welingkar Institute of management research & development, Asian School of Business Management, IMT Distance and Open Learning Institute, National Institute of Health and Family Welfare and National Institute of Rural Development.
In June this year, the UGC issued new ODL Regulations under which only universities can offer distance education courses to students in India, it also clarified that no stand-alone institution will be able to offer any distance learning courses to students. Many Academicians have raised concerns that it can’t be so fast but it is clear that UGC has cleared its stance and all institutes need to follow those rules now.