This comes after efforts by Kerala government to bring all such distance education courses under the Sree Narayana Guru Open University hit a roadblock
Mahatma Gandhi University is ready to offer its distance education programmes this year after the efforts by the Kerala government to bring all such courses under the Sree Narayana Guru Open University (SGNOU) hit a roadblock.
"We have applied for permission from the Distance Education Bureau (DEB) of the University Grants Commission for offering the open and distance learning (ODL) courses this year. The university will also need the nod from the government for continuing with these courses," said Sabu Thomas, Vice Chancellor.
An ordinance promulgated by the government as part of launching the open university had barred other universities from offering open and distance learning courses and private registrations. However, the delay by the DEB in opening its web portal following the COVID-19 pandemic had affected the SGNOU’s plans to start offering the courses.
Prof. Thomas said that the varsity is ready to go ahead with the OLD courses as it had the required infrastructural and academic facilities for offering these programmes. The university has been offering the open and distance learning courses successfully over these years, he said.
The UGC permitted universities to offer ODL programmes if it has a minimum National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) score of 3.01 or figures among the top-100 ranks in the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF). Mahatma Gandhi University is currently ranked 30 in the NIRF and has a cumulative grade point average of 3.24 under the assessment by the NAAC.
The government decision to bring the ODL programmes under the SGNOU had hit the revenue earnings of the varsities as the distance learning courses had offered a steady revenue stream. Moreover, there were also many takers for these courses.
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