Delhi: The University Grants Commission has made changes to the National Higher Education Qualification Framework (NHEQF), simplifying things for students who wish to pursue a dual degree from universities abroad. Earlier, the varying level of qualification did not allow students to enroll in such courses.
In higher education, the level from 5 to 10 has been reduced from 4.5 to 8. This framework will be applicable from graduation to Ph.D.
Certain criteria of assessment have been established for students and divided into levels of 5 to 10. While 1 to 4 level covers school education, the first year of study at the undergraduate level would be ‘level 5’ and Ph.D. would be ‘level 10’, according to the draft of the NHEQF published on 30 January 2022.
Around the world, there are levels ranging from 6 to 12. In Scotland, the highest level is 12. Malaysia, New Zealand, and Australia have level 10. There are eight levels in Europe. In the same manner, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Thailand offer higher education at levels 7 and 6.
If a student wishes to pursue a dual degree program from a foreign university, the new uniformity in the qualification framework of Indian higher education will help them to do so. The students will also be able to opt for any other course in the middle of studies in Indian educational institutions.
This change has been conveyed to vice-chancellors (VCs) of universities across the country Three more such meetings are to be held in this regard to ensure smooth implementation of the new framework.
UGC Chairman Prof M. Jagadesh Kumar said that higher education across the country will now have a uniform qualification framework based on learning outcomes. "This will benefit the students the most. They will be able to switch to any program; on the lines of school education, in higher education also, students will be assessed on the basis of learning outcomes every year."
This test evaluates the students' knowledge and skills. As a result, students will have employment opportunities as well.
Multiple entry-exit systems will be implemented as well from the academic session 2022-23. It will benefit those students who had to leave their studies midway due to some reason. Such students will still receive a diploma after a certain time period. On completion of the course, the concerned university will award them a degree in the same course too.
Apart from this, students of any stream will be free to choose the subjects of their choice. For instance, if students of engineering or science want, they can also opt for music education.