The University Grants Commission Introduces Short-Term Skill Development Courses
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has recently approved a set of guidelines to integrate expertise into higher education through the introduction of short-term skill development courses. These courses are open to anyone who has passed the Class 12 or Senior Secondary examination or its equivalent.
The UGC’s draft guidelines aim to introduce credit-based short-term skill development certificate courses with a duration of three to six months. The UGC emphasizes that universities and colleges can collaborate with relevant skill councils/awarding bodies and industry players to ensure industry-aligned course content, credibility, and access to placement opportunities, funding, and training schemes.
Focus on Emerging Technologies and Programmes
The UGC’s draft guidelines propose the development of short-term courses on emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning, cloud computing, cyber security, 5G connectivity, the internet of things, data science, virtual reality, architectural drafting, basic 3D design, mobile communication, and repairing. Other courses include digital marketing, FinTech, Basics of Start-ups and Entrepreneurship, and even yogic sciences.
The guidelines have been framed in line with the National Credit Framework and the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. Though not finalized, the guidelines will soon be available in the public domain for feedback.
Course Structure and Credits
Each short-term skill development course will be of at least 12 credits and a maximum of 30 credits. The guidelines also specify a minimum student-faculty ratio of 1:30 and allow universities to design the certificate course with up to 70% skill component. Practical classes in laboratories, workshops, and industry premises will be included as part of the skill component.
For more information on the UGC’s draft guidelines, you can visit their official website.