The University Grant Commission (UGC), is a Statuary Body of the Government of India, Ministry of Education, Department of Higher Education. The UGC was established in 1953 and made into a statutory organisation with the UGC Act in 1956. UGC is responsible for coordinating, determining and maintaining standards of higher education. The University Grants Commission provides recognition to universities in India and disburses funds to such recognised universities and colleges.
About the History of UGC and Establishment
UGC's full form is ‘University Grants Commission. The first attempt to have an education system was made in the year 1944 with the Sargent Report. It was the Report of the Central Advisory Board of Education on Post-War Educational Development in India. Through the recommendation, the University Grants Committee was formed in 1945, which took upon the responsibility of supervision of three Central Universities of Aligarh, Banaras, and Delhi.
In the year 1947, the committee got the responsibility to control all the universities of that era. In 1948, the University Education Commission was set up, whose chairman was Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan. The commission suggested that the existing University Grants Committee should be transformed into University Grants Commission India like in the UK.
On 28 December 1953, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad (former Minister of Education) inaugurated University Grants Commission. In November 1956, UGC (University Grants Commission) was formally established as a statutory body of the Government of India via the ‘University Grants Commission Act, 1956’ of the Parliament.
The vision was to supervise the coordination, determination, and maintenance of standards of university education in our country. Thereafter In 1994 and 1995, UGC introduced six centres in Pune, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Bhopal, Guwahati, and Bangalore to control the region-wise education system in India. Currently, the head office is located at Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg in New Delhi.
Functions of the UGC
The main aim & role of UGC in higher education is to provide funds to universities and coordinate, determine & maintain the ethics in institutions of higher education. UGC has also set some standards for the universities for being UGC Approved Universities. With the growth of higher education in India, many top, medium, and small universities are being established day by day.
1. It promotes and oversees university education nationwide.
2. It establishes and tightens regulations governing basic educational standards.
3. It upholds standards for tests like the ICAR NET, UGC NET, and CSIR UGC NET.
4. It assesses improvement in the fields of university and college education.
5. It makes funding to colleges and institutions possible.
6. It still exists in the relationship between institutes of higher learning and the Union and State Governments.
7. It makes necessary suggestions to the federal and state governments on how to improve university education.
The UGC mandate includes:
1. Promoting and coordinating university education.
2. Determining and maintaining standards of teaching, examination and research in universities.
3. Framing regulations on minimum standards of education.
4. Monitoring developments in the field of collegiate and university education; disbursing grants to the universities and colleges.
5. Serving as a vital link between the Union and state governments and institutions of higher learning.
6. Advising the Central and State governments on the measures necessary for the improvement of university education.
Students who are not financially strong but who have the potential to contribute significantly to the higher education system can continue their education without any financial barriers thanks to UGC scholarships. Numerous UGC scholarships and fellowships have been in consideration by the commission, which offers excellent opportunities to the students who are continuously contributing to the growth of our educational system.
1. The Post-Doctoral Fellowship for Women Candidates
2. The Post–Doctoral Fellowship for SC and ST Candidates
3. The Emeritus Fellowship for teachers
4. The Dr S. Radha Krishnan Post–Doctoral Fellowship in Humanities and Social Sciences
5. National Fellowship for the higher education of ST candidates.
6. Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship for SC candidates
7. Swami Vivekananda single girl scholarship for research in social sciences.
8. National fellowship for persons with disabilities
9. National fellowship for OBE candidates
10. Maulana Adad national fellowship for minority students.
11. Major research project (MRP).
12. Raman fellowship for post-doctoral research for Indian scholars in the USA.
13. The Post–Graduate scholarship for professional courses for SC and ST candidates.
14. Special Assistance program.
Every year many brilliant researchers and Lecturers are bestowed with UGC Awards and Honours by the commission. The awards are-
UGC Hari Om Ashram Trust Awards
UGC Swami Pranavananda Saraswati National Awards
UGC National Veda Vyas Sanskrit Awards
Members of UGC India
UGC Chairman - The present UGC Chairman's name is Prof. Dhirendra Pal Singh (D. P. Singh). He owns 34 years of experience in educational planning & administration, institution building, teaching & training, research & development, international cooperation, etc.
He has also served as the Director of the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) and Vice-Chancellor of three universities - Banaras Hindu University (BHU), Varanasi, Dr Hari Singh Gour University, Sagar and Devi Ahilya University, Indore.
UGC Vice Chairman - Dr Bhushan Patwardhan has been appointed as Vice Chairman of UGC.
UGC Secretary - Shri Amit Khare is currently serving as the Secretary Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development.
About Professional Councils
Professional councils are responsible for recognition of courses, promotion of professional institutions and providing grants to undergraduate programmes and various awards.
The statutory professional councils are:
All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE)
Medical Council of India (MCI)
Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR)
National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE)
Dental Council of India (DCI)
Pharmacy Council of India (PCI)
Indian Nursing Council (INC)
Bar Council of India (BCI)
Central Council of Homeopathy (CCH)
Central Council for Indian Medicine (CCIM)
Council of Architecture
National Council for Rural Institutes (NCRI)
State Councils of Higher Education (SCHE)