UGC Proposes Simpler, Swifter Autonomy Status Granting Process For Colleges

In line with the recommendations in the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020, the University Grants Commission (UGC) is now simplifying the procedure through which colleges receive autonomous status. The new draft of the Commission containing amended regulations has already been released for stakeholder feedback. The objective of the suggested changes is to speed up the process of granting autonomy status to colleges by linking it to National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) ratings.

Presently, the proposal submitted by a college seeking autonomous status has to go through a round of examination by expert committees who conduct site visits. However, the changes in the draft suggest that these visits will no longer be required.

The proposal has also recommended changes to how the autonomous status is retained or extended. Currently, the status is initially granted for a decade. If the proposal is accepted, the status will be automatically prolonged for another decade as long as the college in question possesses a grade-A certification from the NAAC.

Autonomous colleges will be able to define and stipulate their own syllabi and courses of study. The higher education institutions (HEIs) will also have the freedom to tailor the courses to suit local needs, make them skill-oriented and in accordance with the job requirements. Autonomous college can also stipulate their own rules of admission, assessment methods, etc.

In Indore, HEIs will be able to apply for autonomy directly to the UGC.

They will not require the prior assent of Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya (DAVV, formerly Indore University). This is bound to save colleges a lot of time as the previous system- applying to the varsity followed by a proposal- caused multiple delays.

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Speaking to The Times Of India, Dr Rajiv Jhalani, the President of the Principals Association of Private Colleges of DAVV, said that the move will be “extremely beneficial for the colleges as the time duration for the colleges to get autonomy will reduce significantly as the process has been cut down.”

The new draft of the UGC has a provision to allow colleges to apply directly to the Commission on its portal.

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