Leading Kerala varsities barred from inviting applications for distance education courses

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Thenjipalam (Malappuram): Major universities in Kerala will not be conducting distance education courses for bachelors and post-graduate programmes this year. This follows an order in this regard by the State Department of Higher Education.

University of Calicut, University of Kerala, Mahatma Gandhi University and the Kannur University thus will not be inviting applications for the distance education and private registration mode this year.

One rider
In the order that was sent to the university registrars, the additional secretary of the higher education department noted that these universities could invite applications for the courses in the distance mode only if the University Grants Commission’s Higher Education Bureau denies approval for the Sree Narayana Guru Open University to conduct courses.

However, those who have sought admission in the previous years, at these universities, can complete their courses. The government had allowed other universities to offer courses on distance mode, last year, as the Sree Narayana Open University didn’t get UGC’s approval.

The letter ordering the universities to not invite applications was sent when the registrar of the University of Kerala had written, on 17 May, seeking approval to invite applications this academic year too. This will mar the prospects of hundreds of students who fail to get admission to regular degree and PG programmes in the colleges in Kerala.

The government, meanwhile, has been trying hard to get UGC’s approval for the courses offered at the Open University.  

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