The University Grants Commission (UGC) in India is poised to introduce new rules, titled “UGC (Fitness of Colleges for Receiving Grants) Rules, 2024“, replacing the existing guidelines from 1975. The objective is to enhance the efficiency and accountability of the system, imposing stringent criteria for colleges seeking grants.
Key Criteria for Grant Eligibility
NAAC Accreditation and NBA Programs:
- Colleges are mandated to either possess accreditation from the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) or ensure that at least 60% of their programs are accredited by the National Board of Accreditation (NBA).
- In the case of colleges offering fewer than three programs, each program must secure accreditation.
- To understand more about NAAC Accreditation & the benefits, read more at https://www.vaave.com/blog/tag/naac/.
- Colleges must participate in rating or ranking exercises conducted by NAAC, NBA, or the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) to be eligible for UGC funds.
- The college should feature in the NIRF ranking in its respective category, with specific requirements based on the frequency of participation.
- Learn how to improve your institution’s NIRF Ranking here at https://www.vaave.com/blog/how-to-improve-your-institutions-nirf-ranking/.
Teacher Vacancy and Salary:
- Colleges must have at least 75% of the sanctioned teaching positions filled.
- Teachers should be paid according to the central or state salary scales prescribed by the UGC.
- Colleges are mandated to charge fees as per the guidelines set by central, state, or university-level authorities.
- No additional fees beyond the prescribed guidelines should be charged.
Institute Development Plan (IDP):
- Colleges must formulate an Institute Development Plan (IDP) outlining their development proposals.
- Adequate financial resources must be available to meet operational requirements.
UGC Portal and University Role:
- The application process and processing will be conducted online.
- Colleges must submit certificates endorsed by the university to support their claims.
- Universities are responsible for examining applications within 60 working days and providing recommendations on the UGC portal.
Impact and Alignment with NEP 2020:
The proposed changes not only aim to expand eligibility to more colleges but also emphasize teaching quality, aligning with the principles outlined in the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. The UGC envisions a more efficient and accountable system, promoting compliance with regulations and standards.
The draft UGC rules for grant eligibility mark a significant shift towards ensuring quality, accountability, and compliance in higher education institutions. Stakeholders have the opportunity to contribute feedback until March 4, 2024, reflecting a collaborative approach towards refining the regulations governing the distribution of grants.