UGC’s new portal to offer over 23,000 higher education courses for free

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The University Grants Commission (UGC) said on July 28 that more than 23,000 higher education courses will be available for free on its new web portal.

Courses include artificial intelligence, cyber security and early childhood care and more.

The portal aims to bridge the digital divide and increase access to higher education in remote areas of the country.

It will be launched today i.e. July 28 as part of the second anniversary of the National Education Policy-2020.

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The UGC has tied up with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) to integrate e-resources with their more than 7.5 lakh Common Service Centers (CSC) and Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) centers to offer these courses from the coming academic year. of 2022-23.

“As part of efforts to make higher education accessible to all, UGC is continuously working to make digital resources available to students in English as well as regional languages,” said UGC Chairman M Jagdesh Kumar.

CSC aims to provide digital access and e-governance services at the doorsteps of citizens especially those living in rural India.

About 2.5 lakh CSCs and SPVs are functioning in Gram Panchayats and more than 5 lakh CSCs/SPVs centers are functioning across the country.

“CSCs and SPVs are being managed and managed by local community entrepreneurs and are referred to as Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs). VLEs run centers to earn their livelihood by providing online services. These centers have computers and internet connectivity,” Kumar said.

Courses include 23,000 postgraduate courses, 137 self-paced MOOC courses in emerging regions and 25 non-engineering self-paced courses. There is no charge for accessing these on the UGC portal.

“All courses are free. However, to avail the services and infrastructure of CSC/SVP, a user has to pay a fee. 20 or more per day 500 per month for the VLE’s efforts and their infrastructure costs,” Kumar said.

“It is similar to other government schemes like Ayushman Bharat Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Kishan Samman Nidhi Yojana, e-Shram, PAN Card, Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Mandhan Yojana (PMSYM) and many more,” Kumar added.

(with inputs from PTI)

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