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UGC: 4-year bachelor’s degree holders with 75% marks can pursue PhD directly

April 22, 2024

University Grants Commission (UGC) Chairman Jagadesh Kumar recently announced a significant change in policy, stating that students who have completed four-year undergraduate degrees are now eligible to directly pursue a PhD and can also appear for the National Eligibility Test (NET). This adjustment marks a departure from the previous requirement, where NET candidates needed to possess a master’s degree with at least 55% marks.

For those aspiring to pursue a PhD, whether with or without a Junior Research Fellowship (JRF), a minimum of 75% marks or equivalent grades in their undergraduate program is now necessary.

Furthermore, the upcoming NET exam, scheduled for June 16, will be conducted offline instead of as a Computer Based Test. Notably, candidates are permitted to appear for tests in subjects of their choice for PhD admission, irrespective of the discipline of their bachelor’s degree.

Chairman Kumar emphasized that candidates with four-year undergraduate degrees must have a minimum of 75% aggregate marks or equivalent grades on a grading scale to be eligible. However, a slight relaxation of five percent marks or equivalent grades may be provided for certain categories such as SC, ST, OBC (non-creamy layer), differently-abled, and economically weaker sections.

UGC-NET serves as a crucial qualifying exam for various purposes, including eligibility for Junior Research Fellowship, appointment as assistant professor, and admission to PhD programs in Indian universities and colleges.

The application process for the upcoming exam began on Saturday and is set to conclude on May 10.

Also read: UGC introduces NET scores for PhD admissions 

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