The post-graduate curriculum and credit structure, draft has been approved by the University Grants Commission (UGC). Its main features are a 1-year master’s program, the ability for students to switch disciplines, and the freedom to select alternate learning modes from offline, online, and hybrid options. In addition to the current two-year Master’s degree, UGC is now offering a one-year program for the first time.
One of the fundamental elements of this new curriculum and credit structure for postgraduate studies, according to UGC Chairman Prof. M. Jagadesh Kumar, “is the capacity of students to move across different subject areas.”
Glimpse of New Multidisciplinary Education:
Students who have finished a 4-year UG course, a 3-year UG, a 2-year Master’s program, or a 5-year integrated program (UG + PG) in STEM disciplines would also be eligible for admission to M.E. and M. Tech. Programmes in related fields, according to Prof. Kumar, who described another new feature.
He states “This arrangement allows students to major or minor in any subject during their undergraduate studies and then complete their Master’s degree in that discipline. In addition, if the student proves their proficiency by passing an admission exam like the CUET-PG, they can pursue a Master’s degree in a field unrelated to their undergraduate specializations.”
He went on, “This multidisciplinary education fosters problem-solving skills, critical thinking, and a comprehensive understanding of the world.”
What the Draft Says:
Undergraduate students may choose to double major in any of the two topics they have majored in, according to the draft. Additionally, it enables UG-qualifying students with a major and minor(s) to select a major or minor(s) subject for their Master’s course. According to the draft policy, Higher Education Institutes (HEIs) will have the flexibility to have different designs of master’s programs – one-year master’s, two-year master’s, and an integrated five-year program.
It further specifies that students may elect to do coursework in the third and fourth semesters, coursework in the third semester and research in the fourth semester, or just research in the third and fourth semesters when they transfer from a three-year UG degree to a two-year PG program.
After completing a four-year UG program, students who want to pursue a one-year PG program can concentrate on coursework, research, or both. For those who enroll in the year-long PG curriculum, there will only be one exit point. Upon their departure after a full year, students will get a Postgraduate Diploma.
It further stated that the credit points can be redeemed by the Academic Bank of Credit (ABC) criteria for admission or entry at different levels of higher education, providing both vertical and horizontal mobility with a range of lateral entry choices.
Need for a Change:
Students who have their first degree frequently consider changing their subjects to pursue a different job path. With a postgraduate degree, changing course can be difficult, but NEP allows for enough flexibility to make it feasible.
The necessity for a reorganized graduate course aligned with the reorganized undergraduate programs following the National Education Policy – 2020, which highlights HEIs’ flexibility in providing various undergraduate and master’s degree designs.
The UGC unveiled the credit structure and curriculum for UG courses covered under NEP last year. It offered students a variety of admission and exit options, the chance to choose between a single and double major, and interdisciplinary course selections.
According to the draft policy, postgraduate degrees give students the chance to transform their fields and fulfill their dreams.