Updated June 11th, 2024 at 16:21 IST

UGC Introduces New Guidelines For Universities; Enhanced Transparency on Websites A Priority

The UGC guidelines call for all HEIs to maintain a functional website that provides unrestricted access to essential information like fees, rankings, calendars.

Reported by: Nandini Verma
UGC | Image:PTI
Advertisement

The University Grants Commission (UGC) has issued a notification underscoring the importance of adherence to the newly established guidelines on Public Self-Disclosure by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) for 2024. This directive aligns with the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020, which emphasizes the necessity for transparent self-disclosure by universities to ensure accountability to their stakeholders.

Transparency as a Core Principle

Transparency is highlighted as a key principle in NEP 2020, aiming to ensure that universities remain accountable by providing open access to pertinent records. The UGC notice stated, “The National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 emphasizes transparent self-disclosure by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). Public self-disclosure by HEIs is one of the fundamental principles of the NEP. The NEP contemplates that HEIs shall be responsible and accountable to the stakeholders through transparent self-disclosure of all relevant records. The availability of information in the public domain is an important source of accountability.”

Information Accessibility

The UGC guidelines call for all HEIs to maintain a functional website that provides unrestricted access to essential information for stakeholders. The website should not require registration or login and should include a 'Search' feature for easy navigation.

Essential Information to be Disclosed

The guidelines suggest that universities provide a comprehensive overview of their institution, including the governing act and statutes, institutional development plan, constituent units, affiliated colleges, and off-campus learning support centres under ODL mode if applicable. Additionally, institutions should disclose their accreditation and ranking status (such as NAAC, NBA, NIRF), recognition and approval (including 2(f) and 12B status), annual reports, academic calendar, fee structure, hostel details, admission prospectus, academic collaborations, and more.

Enhancing Fairness and Transparency

The UGC's initiative aims to promote fairness and transparency within the higher education system. By implementing these guidelines, HEIs can ensure a transparent and accountable system, contributing to the growth of the Indian higher education sector. "The Higher Education Institutions are requested to take necessary measures to comply with the guidelines to ensure a fair and transparent system that will contribute to the growth of the Indian Higher Education system," the UGC urged.

Conclusion

The move to enforce transparent self-disclosure by HEIs marks a significant step towards fostering an accountable higher education environment in India. By making critical information readily available to stakeholders such as students, parents, researchers, prospective students, regulatory bodies, accreditation agencies, alumni, and the public, the UGC aims to enhance the credibility and functionality of higher education institutions across the country.

Advertisement

Published June 11th, 2024 at 16:11 IST