UGC's new PhD guidelines – Careers Ready


Recently University Grants Commission (University Grants Commission-UGC) formed the expert committee New guidelines for PhD admission after recommendations Issued.

About the new PhD guidelines

  • These Guidelines applicable from academic session 2024-25 Will be.
  • Changes in Common Entrance Examination
    • UGC's move In accordance with the National Education Policy 2020 It aims to provide a single common entrance examination at all levels of higher education.
  • PhD admission will now depend on the National Eligibility Test (NET).
    • Classification of NET candidates: These guidelines will classify NET candidates into three categories from June 2024.
      • First will be those who are eligible
        • Admission to PhD program with JRF and
        • Appointment to the post of Assistant Professor

      • Others will be those candidates who are eligible for
        • JRF Without it PhD admission to program
        • Appointment to the post of Assistant Professor
      • Third will be those candidates who Without being selected for JRF or for appointment as Assistant Professor without being eligible Are eligible for admission to the PhD programme.
    • News Possible motives behind PhD guidelines
      • Pursuing a PhD in any subject regardless of the subjects of your undergraduate degree.
      • This provision aims to increase the pool of PhD candidates Introduced to strengthen the research ecosystem Has been done
      • Furthermore, UGC aims to break the perception that PhD is a 'special qualification'.

UGC's vision behind the new PhD guidelines: Mainstreaming the full potential of graduates

  • Expansion of eligibility criteria
    • The UGC's decision to allow graduates with a four-year undergraduate degree to appear for the National Eligibility Test (NET) will increase the pool of potential PhD candidates.
      • First, Lectureship and PhD Both programs required a master's degree for eligibility, making the candidate base more restricted.
    • The goal is to eliminate the notions of the elite class.
      • UGC aims to end the perception of PhD as a “distinctive qualification” by expanding the eligibility criteria.
      • Emphasis was laid on making higher education more accessible and inclusive.
  • financial considerations
    • UGC aims to reduce the financial burden on students by replacing multiple entrance examinations with a single common examination.
      • The change is aimed at reducing expenses related to application fees, travel and boarding, especially for students from rural or semi-urban areas.

Concerns increase over new PhD guidelines

  • standardization vs autonomy
    • The debate centers on balancing standardization in academia and university autonomy.
    • The move towards a single common entrance examination is aimed at streamlining admissions, but Concerns about erosion of institutional autonomy produces.
  • importance of hard preparation
    • especially Weakening of standards in conceptual and methodological preparations Concerns arise about doing so.
    • Abolishing the MPhil program and placing less emphasis on research in postgraduate degrees Questions arise on maintaining rigor.
    • The absence of long-term writing assessment in the NET examination raises doubts about its effectiveness.
  • Financial implications and equity concerns
    • While UGC aims to reduce the financial burden on students, Concerns arise about increasing socio-economic inequalities Are there.
    • around net preparation Rise of coaching industry raises questions on equal access to higher education Is.
  • Global best practices versus local realities
    • Critics of UGC in PhD admissions Difference between approach and global standards Let's highlight.
    • International practices emphasize holistic assessment including research proposals, CVs and statements of purpose, which Absent in UGC guidelines Are.
  • Possibility of further 'excellence' of higher education
    • If a graduate degree is sufficient for PhD research, then There could be further 'excellence' of higher education Is.
      • Only existing linguistic and educational capital Only existing students Research can increase inequalities Are.

the way forward

  • Call for publicly funded research institutions
    • Need for more publicly funded research institutions with better infrastructure and increased fellowships Emphasis has been laid on.
    • Such initiatives can enhance opportunities for students while maintaining standards of rigor and guidance.
  • Focusing on the role of consultation and preparation
    • Adequate advising and preparation is important for students transitioning from undergraduate to PhD level.
    • Therefore, the importance of continuous mentorship and preparation period should be kept in mind to ensure the quality of research.


Although the new PhD guidelines of the UGC aim to democratize access to higher education, Concerns remained about the potential impact on the specific status of universities and the maintenance of research standards. Have happened.

Therefore, a Vibrant and equitable research ecosystem with rigor to promote Balancing inclusivity and ensuring adequate guidance Is important.

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