New Ph.D. Regulations, 2022 :- UG With Minimum 75% Marks Now Can Pursue Ph.D. in India

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The University Grants Commission, which has developed new guidelines for getting a Ph.D., respected the discussion surrounding international recognition and updating norms for the Ph.D in New Education Policy 2020. We require more Ph.D. scholars as we move towards a more research-driven atmosphere, but it’s truly surprising to mention that,

“Only 2.7% Colleges run Ph.D. programme and 2,02,550 students are enrolled in Ph.D. which is about 0.5% of the total student enrolment”

[AISHE, 2020]

The top states from where Ph.D. scholars come are Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, and Uttar Pradesh. The numbers of Ph.D. scholars are very less compared to aggregate students’ enrollment. However, new regulations may increase the number of Ph.D. scholars in future.

According to the University Grants Commission (Minimum Standards and Procedures for Award of Ph.D. Degree) Regulations, 2022 “a candidate having 4-year or eight-semester bachelor’s degree with a minimum of 75% marks in aggregate or its equivalent grade can enroll for Ph.D.”.

If a candidate does not score a minimum of 75%, then UGC has drafted a more convenient rule for the scholar willing to pursue a Ph.D. by having a minimum of 55% in qualifications declared equivalent to the master’s degree or a candidate having an M.Phil. programme with at least 55% marks in aggregate. The goal is to provide opportunities for scholars to be a part of the academic community and to develop an intellectual acumen in subject matter. It will help in building a research environment in India, and the government is quite assertive with the goal of creating India as a hub of research and development.

These regulations, 2022 further states that a candidate with 1-year/2-semester master’s degree programme after a 4-year/8-semester bachelor’s degree programme or a 2-year/4-semester master’s degree programme after a 3-year bachelor’s degree programme shall be eligible to enroll for Ph.D. The duration of the programme is kept between minimum three years, including course work, and a maximum duration of six years from the date of admission to the Ph.D.

It’s interesting to note that the Ph.D. regulations of 2016 stated that the scholar “must publish at least one (1) research paper in a refereed journal and make two paper presentations in conferences/seminars before the submission of the dissertation/thesis for adjudication.” The new regulations for 2022 have not set up any such criteria to complete the Ph.D., but that doesn’t mean a Ph.D. scholar shouldn’t focus on publications and peer reviews.

Supernumerary Supervisor for International Ph.D. Scholars

With the new regulations for 2022, international students who want to pursue Ph.D. in India can now have a supernumerary supervisor who can guide up to two international research scholars, and HEIs can have their own selection procedures for Ph.D. admission. UGC is trying its best to provide opportunities to international Ph.D. scholars, but compared to developing nations like China, where top priority is given to research and development, it gets scholars from the top world economies. But in India, we get most scholars from developing or underdeveloped economies around the world.

“Majority of International Ph.D. Scholars are from counties like Ehiopia, Yemen, Afganistan, Nepal and Iran”

[AISHE, 2020]

With the growing standard of education, the functions and responsibilities of the Research Advisory Committee have broadened and are now focused on

  • Reviewing the research proposal and finalizing the topic of research.
  • Guide in developing the study design and methodology of research
  • Periodically review and assist in the progress of the research work.

Now Scholar Can Pursue Part-time Ph.D. while Working

The addition of the part-time modality represents one of the most significant paradigm adjustments in the Ph.D. The idea is not new because it is used in many developed countries including Australia, USA, and Britain as well as emerging economies like China, however there are rules about how long students can continue living at home or working before finishing their final thesis.

The range of domains and fields of study for the PhD is another limitation.  This could be an option for the working professional, particularly in the IT, pharmaceutical, and scientific sectors. According to the 2020 AISHE report, Ph.D.s are typically pursued in fields like chemistry, law, business management, and pharmacy.

“At Ph.D. level, maximum numbers of students turn out is in Science stream followed by Engineering and Technology.”

[AISHE, 2020]

The regulations for 2022 explore the unseen dimension of learning. So, for a part-time Ph.D., the higher educational institution concerned shall obtain a “No Objection Certificate” through the candidate for a part-time Ph.D. programme from the appropriate authority in the organization where the candidate is employed. The regulations for 2022 limit HEIs to offering Ph.D. programmes via distance or online mode. Therefore, enrolling in a Ph.D. is no longer a difficult chore for scholars because of the modified norms and regulations by the UGC who were for some reason unable to complete or get into it.

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