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PHD can be pursued directly after a 4-year bachelor’s degrees and 75% marks: UGC

New UGC Guidelines Enable Direct PhD Pursuit for Four-Year Undergraduate Degree Holders

In a significant development, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has announced that students with four-year undergraduate degrees can now directly pursue a PhD and appear for the National Eligibility Test (NET). This move represents a departure from the previous requirement of a master’s degree for NET eligibility.

Minimum Marks Requirement for PhD Pursuit
Under the new guidelines, candidates seeking admission to a PhD program, with or without a Junior Research Fellowship (JRF), must have secured a minimum of 75 percent marks or equivalent grades in their four-year undergraduate course. This requirement underscores the UGC’s commitment to maintaining academic excellence.

Subject Flexibility and Eligibility Criteria
Furthermore, the UGC chairman, Jagadesh Kumar, emphasized that candidates with four-year undergraduate degrees can now choose to pursue a PhD in any subject of their preference, regardless of the discipline in which they obtained their bachelor’s degree. This flexibility expands opportunities for students to align their academic pursuits with their interests and career goals.

Inclusive Measures
In a bid to promote inclusivity, the UGC has also announced a relaxation of five percent marks or equivalent grades for candidates belonging to marginalized communities, including SC, ST, OBC (non-creamy layer), differently-abled individuals, and economically weaker sections. Such measures aim to create a level playing field and ensure equal access to educational opportunities.

Impact on Higher Education Landscape
These changes are poised to reshape the higher education landscape in India by streamlining the pathway to pursuing doctoral studies. By enabling direct PhD pursuit for four-year undergraduate degree holders, the UGC is not only simplifying the process but also encouraging early engagement in research and academic endeavors.

Opportunities for Aspiring Scholars
For aspiring scholars, especially those with a keen interest in research, the new UGC guidelines present a unique opportunity to embark on their academic journey at an earlier stage. This initiative is expected to foster a culture of intellectual curiosity and innovation among students across diverse fields of study.

Stakeholder Response and Implementation
The announcement has garnered attention from various stakeholders in the education sector, with many lauding the UGC’s efforts to enhance accessibility and inclusivity in higher education. Moving forward, the successful implementation of these guidelines will be crucial in realizing the full potential of this transformative policy change.

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