Students can now pursue 2 degrees at the same time; here’s what it entails

The programmes can be varied, but have to be of the same level, timings should not overlap, and classes can be online, offline or distance-learning

JEE (Mains)
The two programmes opted by students at the same time have to be of the same level. PTI

The government has decided to allow students to pursue dual degree programmes at both the undergraduate and post-graduate levels from this academic session. The University Grants Commission (UGC) will issue detailed guidelines on this next week in this regard.

The announcement is in accordance with the new National Education Policy (NEP) to allow students to acquire multiple skills. “New guidelines will allow a candidate to pursue two-degree programmes in physical mode simultaneously,” UGC Chairman M Jagadesh Kumar said on Tuesday, adding: “The degrees can either be pursued from the same or different universities. Students will also be allowed to pursue two degree programmes in physical and online mode.”

The UGC had been planning such a move for a long time, but received the go-ahead for it in 2020. It had set up a committee in 2012 as well to examine the idea, and consultations were held, but ultimately the idea was junked, reports The Deccan Chronicle.

What’s allowed, what’s not

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The two programmes opted by the students have to be of the same level. For instance, they can only pursue two undergraduate or two postgraduate, or two diploma degrees together. For now, the two degrees will only be non-technical programmes that are approved by the UGC, the report said.

As part of this programme, students will be given the flexibility to opt for two different degrees in any mode, i.e., full-time physical mode, or online or distance education mode. One of the key guidelines is that the class timings for the two degree programmes should not overlap or clash with each other. So, a student pursuing a graduate course in mathematics will also be able to take up a course in computer science simultaneously.

The admission policy for such courses will be decided by the respective universities and institutions. In the case of central universities, candidates will have to appear and qualify in CUET – Common University Entrance Test – in order to seek admission to dual degree programmes. The option though is not mandatory for any university or college and will only come into effect once statutory bodies at the university approve the UGC guidelines and facilitate the new system.

Carrying credits

As part of NEP 2022, the Education Ministry has proposed offering transferrable credits to students for completing degree programmes. This has been offered to provide multiple entry  and exit modes to the students. As part of this policy, students are allowed to join or drop from one course to another provided they have earned the necessary academic credits and fulfilled the requirements.

In line with this, the double degree programme will allow students to carry credits across degrees if they fulfil the basic requirements. However, when it comes to degree programmes, candidates will be required to earn and fulfil all credit requirements as specified by the university guidelines. No concession in credit requirements will be offered as part of the dual degree programmes, Jagranjosh reported.he government has decided to allow students to pursue dual degree programmes at both the undergraduate and post-graduate levels from this academic session. The University Grants Commission (UGC) will issue detailed guidelines on this next week in this regard.

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