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Draft National Higher Educational Qualification Framework (NHEQF): UGC

Draft National Higher Educational Qualification Framework (NHEQF): UGC

The University Grants Commission (UGC) has released a Draft National Higher Educational Qualification Framework (NHEQF) as a part of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 to assess students at different levels.

  • The NEP 2020 aims at making “India a global knowledge superpower”.
  • Given the size of the higher education system and the diversity of institutions and programmes of study in India, the country needs to move towards developing a nationally accepted and internationally comparable and acceptable qualifications framework to facilitate transparency and comparability of higher education qualifications at all levels.
  • The framework is not intended to promote a uniform curriculum or national common syllabus.
  • The purpose is to bring up/elevate all HEIs (Higher Education Institutions) to a common level of benchmarking to ensure that all institutions are providing quality education.
  • The draft framework has outlined several learning level “descriptors” or parameters based on which students can be assessed at every level.
  • These parameters include generic learning outcomes, constitutional, ethical, and moral values, employment ready skills, entrepreneurship mindset, and application of knowledge and skills among others.
  • The NHEQF has divided parameters into levels 5 to 10.
  • Levels 1 to 4 cover the school education.
  • The NHEQF level 5 represents learning outcomes appropriate to the first year (first two semesters) of the undergraduate programme of study, while Level 10 represents learning outcomes appropriate to the doctoral-level programme of study.
  • The NHEQF envisages that students on completion of a programme of study must possess and demonstrate the expected graduate profile/attributes acquired.
  • It also fixes the number of credits required to clear the different levels of the four-year undergraduate programme, postgraduate degrees and doctoral degrees.
  • The NEP 2020 allows multiple entry and exits at the undergraduate level. It effectively means that students can exit after completing one year of undergraduate programme with a certificate, after two years with a diploma, after three years with a bachelor’s degree, or can complete four years and get an honours degree with a honours/research degree.
  • A credit is a unit by which the coursework is measured.

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