A month after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced that top 100 universities in India would be allowed to offer online programmes, online education firm upGrad has announced a slew of e-degree programmes over a blended module.
With Jamia Hamdard University, upGrad will be offering online-offline blended BBA (Bachelor of Business Administration) and BCA (Bachelor of Computer Application) degrees to school pass-outs as well as MBA and MCA degree programmes.
Till now, fully online degrees were not available in India. Most programmes offered online were certificate programmes or short-term courses.
While the fee structure is being finalised, Mayank Kumar, co-founder & MD of upGrad, said that the MCA/BBA programmes will be priced between Rs 40,000-50,000 per annum. Delhi-based Jamia Hamdard was ranked 21 st among Indian universities as per the MHRD's National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) 2020.
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It has also partnered with OP Jindal Global University (JGU), for two Master’s programmes - a one-year LL.M. in Corporate & Financial Law and a two-year MBA in Digital Finance and Banking. The LLM and MBA will cost between Rs 2 lakh to 2.5 lakh per annum, added Kumar.
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Ronnie Screwvala, Executive Chairman & co-founder, upGrad, said the ongoing global crisis calls for evolution on a recurring basis, especially amid the online education space which seems to be the only way forward, owing to its robustness and accessibility.
To strengthen its foothold in the higher education market which is estimated to witness 41 million enrollments by 2022, upGrad has earmarked an extensive budget of Rs 150 Cr for this new venture.
Further, it is expected that other non-academic expenses incurred at campuses at an offline course related to access of hostel and mess can also be saved by e-degrees. Also, there won't be any geographical limitations for pursuing an online degree programme.
Seyed Ehtesham Hasnain, Vice-Chancellor, Jamia Hamdard University, said that online learning will be the 'new-normal' for years to come.
"Till now, there was a reluctance to pursue programmes online because they used to typically be certificate courses. But an online degree will be treated on par as a regular offline degree course," he added.
These programmes will be blended online courses, meaning there will be live classes, tutorial sessions as well as bootcamps for interaction between students.Follow our coverage of the coronavirus crisis here