The Government of India has envisaged a greater role for the Open and the Distance Education System. The envisioned role may be fulfilled by recognizing and treating the Degrees/Diplomas/Certificates awarded through distance mode at par with the corresponding awards of Degrees/ Diplomas/ Certificates obtained through the formal system of education. Open and Distance Education System in the country is contributing a lot in expansion of Higher Education and for achieving target of Gross Enrolment Ratio, without compromising on quality. Non recognition/non equivalence of degrees of Open and Distance Learning (ODL) institutions for the purpose of promotion/employment and pursuing higher education may prove a deterrent to many aspiring students and will ultimately defeat the purpose of Open and Distance Education.
Accordingly, the Degrees/ Diplomas/ Certificates awarded for programmes conducted by the ODL institutions, recognized by the erstwhile DEC/ UGC, in conformity with UGC Notification on Specification of Degrees should be treated as equivalent to the corresponding awards of the Degree/ Diploma/ Certificate of the traditional Universities/Institutions in the country.
UGC-DEB has notified on their website https://deb.ugc.ac.in/ under UGC (Open and Distance Learning} Regulations, 201 T in the official Gazette on 23/06/2017. As per UGC (Open and Distance Learning) Regulations, 2017 under Part-I (2)(p), the programmes in engineering, medicine, dental, pharmacy, nursing, architecture, physiotherapy and such other programmes which require hands-on training are not permitted to be offered under Open and Distance Learning mode.