The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) issued show-cause notices to two private universities for offering degree and diploma courses in collaboration with edtech companies, stating that this “outsourcing” is a violation of norms. This action by AICTE comes after the University Grants Commission (UGC) has warned universities and colleges against offering distance learning and online courses in association with edtech companies, saying as per norms, no “franchise” agreement is permissible.
AICTE chairman Anil Sahasrabudhe has appealed to the public and the stakeholders, to tell them if they encounter similar arrangements between universities and edtech companies. So far, AICTE has issued notices to two universities, but Sahasrabudhe added that they might take action accordingly if they found more such arrangements.
The AICTE chairman had earlier clarified that the govt. isn’t against edtech companies, but they can’t be allowed to delve into areas that aren’t their domain. As reported by PTI, Sahasrabudhe said, “These ed-tech companies were advertising for postgraduate programmes in management and computer applications that can only be offered by universities and approved colleges. Even the top institutions in the country like the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) were also not allowed to offer postgraduate management, but only a PG diploma in management until an Act in Parliament was passed. How can we allow ed-tech companies to do so?”
“We have given approvals to universities and colleges to offer degree and diploma programmes, and that they are supposed to offer them on their own and not piggyback on private companies or outsource their job to any third party,” he added.
The UGC and AICTE have also advised parents and students to ascertain the recognition status of any such programme on their websites before enrolling into them.