New Policy On Distance Mastering In Larger Education Sector

In pursuance to the announcement of one hundred days agenda of HRD of ministry by Hon’ble Human Sources development Minister, a New Policy on Distance Understanding In Higher Education Sector was drafted.

BACKGROUND

1. In terms of Entry 66 of List 1 of the Seventh Schedule to the Constitution of India, Parliament is competent to make laws for the coordination and determination of standards in institutions for higher education for study, and scientific and technical institutions. Parliament has enacted laws for discharging this responsibility by means of: the University Grants Commission (UGC) for general Higher Education, the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) for Technical Education and other Statutory bodies for other disciplines. As regards higher education, by way of the distance mode, Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) Act, 1985 was enacted with the following two prime objectives, amongst other people: (a) To supply opportunities for greater education to a substantial segment of population, especially disadvantaged groups living in remote and rural areas, adults, housewives and functioning people today and (b) to encourage Open University and Distance Education Systems in the educational pattern of the country and to coordinate and determine the standards in such systems.

2. The history of distance learning or education through distance mode in India, goes way back when the universities began providing education through distance mode in the name of Correspondence Courses by way of their Directorate/College of Correspondence Education. In these days, the courses in humanities and/or in commerce had been offered by way of correspondence and taken by these, who, owing to different motives, such as limited quantity of seats in common courses, employability, difficulties of access to the institutions of higher studying and so on., could not get themselves enrolled in the traditional `face-to-face’ mode `in-class’ programmes.

three. In the recent past, the demand for larger education has improved enormously throughout the nation due to the fact of awareness about the significance of greater education, whereas the system of greater education could not accommodate this ever growing demand.

4. Below the circumstances, a number of institutions like deemed universities, private universities, public (Government) universities and even other institutions, which are not empowered to award degrees, have started cashing on the situation by supplying distance education programmes in a big quantity of disciplines, ranging from humanities to engineering and management etc., and at distinctive levels (certificate to beneath-graduate and post-graduate degrees). There is generally a danger that some of these institutions may possibly come to be `degree mills’ supplying sub- normal/poor high-quality education, consequently eroding the credibility of degrees and other qualifications awarded by way of the distance mode. European schools calls for a far greater degree of coordination among the concerned statutory authorities, mostly, UGC, AICTE and IGNOU and its authority – the Distance Education Council (DEC).

five. Government of India had clarified its position in respect of recognition of degrees, earned through the distance mode, for employment below it vide Gazette Notification No. 44 dated 1.three.1995.


six. Despite the risks referred to in para 4 above, the significance of distance education in supplying high quality education and coaching can’t be ignored. Distance Mode of education has an critical part for:

(i)supplying chance of mastering to these, who do not have direct access to face to face teaching, functioning persons, home-wives and so forth.
(ii)offering opportunity to functioning pros to update their understanding, enabling them to switchover to new disciplines and professions and enhancing their qualifications for career advancement.
(iii)exploiting the potential of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in the teaching and mastering course of action and
(iv)reaching the target of 15% of GER by the end of 11th Strategy and 20% by the finish of 12th five year Program.

7. In order to discharge the Constitutional duty of determination and maintenance of the requirements in Greater Education, by making certain coordination among different statutory regulatory authorities as also to ensure the promotion of open and distance education technique in the nation to meet the aspirations of all cross-sections of men and women for higher education, the following policy in respect of distance understanding is laid down:

(a) In order to guarantee right coordination in regulation of requirements of larger education in diverse disciplines by way of many modes [i.e. face to face and distance] as also to make certain credibility of degrees/diploma and certificates awarded by Indian Universities and other Education Institutes, an apex body, namely, National Commission for Greater Education and Study shall be established in line with the recommendations of Prof. Yash Pal Committee/National Information Commission. A Standing Committee on Open and Distance

Education of the mentioned Commission, shall undertake the job of coordination, determination and maintenance of standards of education by way of the distance mode. Pending establishment of this body:

(i) Only these programmes, which do not involve extensive practical course work, shall be permissible through the distance mode.

(ii) Universities / institutions shall frame ordinances / regulations / guidelines, as the case may well be, spelling out the outline of the programmes to be presented via the distance mode indicating the number of essential credits, list of courses with assigned credits, reading references in addition to self learning material, hours of study, get in touch with classes at study centres, assignments, examination and evaluation approach, grading and so on.

(iii) DEC of IGNOU shall only assess the competence of university/institute in respect of conducting distance education programmes by a group of professionals, whose report shall be placed before the Council of DEC for consideration.

(iv) The approval shall be given only after consideration by Council of DEC and not by Chairperson, DEC. For the objective, minimum number of mandatory meetings of DEC might be prescribed.

(v) AICTE would be directed below section 20 (1) of AICTE Act 1987 to make sure accreditation of the programmes in Personal computer Sciences, Info Technology and Management purposed to be provided by an institute/university by means of the distance mode, by National Board of Accreditation (NBA).

(vi) UGC and AICTE would be directed below section 20 (1) of their respective Acts to frame detailed regulations prescribing standards for a variety of programmes/courses, offered through the distance mode beneath their mandate,

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