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NUJS, GNLU can’t offer any online diplomas after UGC near-blanket ban

Distance education now faces UGC hurdles
Distance education now faces UGC hurdles

NUJS Kolkata and other national law schools are now debarred from offering any online course going forward under the new rules notified by the University Grants Commission (UGC), just as NUJS had started down the path of controversy surrounding its online certificate, diploma and degree courses.

A regulation notified by the UGC on 4 July, which also affects any other national law universities intending to offer qualifications online, stipulates that in order to be eligible to grant certificates, degrees or diplomas on the basis of instruction delivered through the online mode a higher educational institution:

should be accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) with minimum score of 3.26 on a 4-point scale;

and

should be in the Top-100 in overall category in the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) for at least two years during the previous three years

While Nalsar and NLU Delhi make the NAAC score criteria, for which NUJS and NLSIU did not even apply, none of the NLUs including Nalsar and NLU Delhi are among the top 100 NIRF institutions in the “overall category” for the last two years.

The University Grants Commission (Online Courses or Programmes) Regulations 2018 as of now affect only NUJS and GNLU Gandhinagar, because we understand that no other NLUs currently provide purely online courses.

Online instruction at Nalsar Hyderabad, for instance, is blended with offline instruction in its distance education courses, so it may be outside the scope of the 4 July regulation.

Students who had already enrolled in NUJS’ and GNLU’s existing online courses, or had completed them, would also not be affected by the new regulation, which only applies to any enrolments after its notification on 4 July.

NUJS is currently facing a writ in the Delhi high court by a student enrolled in one of the online diplomas offered by it, after the interim vice chancellor of the law school suspended all online courses last month allegedly without a warning. We have reached out to NUJs for comment.

We have reached out to GNLU for comment as well. An authoritative source said that no new online course batches are scheduled at the law school as on date.

Regulation (PDF)

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