PhDs to become tougher in coming years

Don’t be surprised if you find you hear that Nagpur University would be awarding only about 100 PhDs during its convocations in next four to five years. It would soon be a reality after NU introduced tougher norms for obtaining the coveted degree.

On Monday, when NU released the data of aspirants whose synopses have been cleared by its Research Recognition Committees (RRCs), only 138 were granted the nod to pursue further, while 98 of 236 were rejected.

The university was once infamous for awarding highest number of PhDs in the state. In the last few convocations, the numbers touched a high of over thousand.


Even those from other universities like Pune preferred to pursue it from Nagpur University, as it was extremely easy to obtain it. Obviously, the quality of PhDholders had taken a beating.

With only 138 candidates being able to clear RRC this year, it’s a drastic drop of students in comparison to the last few years.

The data was released by pro-VC Pramod Yeole, who is heading the examination section. It was only after his insistence on introducing reforms in awarding PhD that NU is able to bring down the numbers.

“These 138 candidates would be awarded PhDs in the next four to five years. From now on, you will see only such low numbers of PhDs in future convocations,” the pro-VC told TOI.

Last year, NU introduced two-test pattern while replacing old PhD Entrance Test (PET) which was objective type and relatively very easy to crack. Now, the candidates are thoroughly checked in their knowledge and attitude to pursue the degree in a particular subject through PET-I and II.

Check: UGC NET Paper 1 – 6000 MCQs + 12 Years QAs

The first one is objective type and only those clearing it could appear in PET-II, which is a theoretical one. NU also started online registration for the aspirants, who cleared both PETs from last December.

Earlier, over thousand to two thousand aspirants used to clear the older PET. After introduction of the new system, only 860 cleared PET-I and 369 PET-II. Of them, 236 submitted their synopses before deadline to the RRC of which 138 were selected and 98 rejected.

From last year, NU made it mandatory for the aspirants to have approved guides only from its recognized research centres, as per guidelines of the University Grants Commission. If they opted for other guides not working with recognized centres, their applications would be automatically cancelled without a warning. The candidates first need to approach the research centres before registering their names online.

NU also put restrictions on guides for admitting students. Accordingly, a professor can guide at the most eight students, associate professor six students, and assistant professor four. Moreover, candidates can’t submit the thesis before three years and not after five years of clearing PETs.

Check: UGC Regulations 2016 : Minimum Standards and Procedure for Award of M.PHIL./PH.D Degrees

News Courtesy: The Times of India (link)

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