Prior to selecting a programme or institution abroad for higher studies, especially in the UK, Russia, Australia, West Europe and China, you must check whether your foreign degree would be given the equivalence in India for higher studies, jobs or not.
A few months ago, the Association of Indian Universities (AIU) had relaxed certain norms on the recognition of certain foreign university qualifications, but still some programmes not treated with equivalence in India.
Main points to consider
Students getting degrees from foreign universities for shorter duration courses (similar to programmes in India) will find it easier to get recognition in India.
Degrees for medicine and law get recognition only from professional bodies.
As per AIU rules, until mid-2015, programmes in foreign institutions were required to be completed in the full-time regular mode as those of Indian universities. The duration of bachelor’s programmes in the foreign university had to be of 3 years and master’s courses of 2 years (as in India).
Most of the foreign universities allow students to complete their PG degree quickly (compared to Indian institutes). Earlier, these courses were not given equivalence in India, but later on, AIU changed its policy and approved them.
AIU does not relax the requirements for the minimum duration of degrees, the duration instead is measured in terms of exact number of months/years and completion of the number of semesters/trimesters.
Professional degrees awarded by foreign universities also entitle the student to practice a profession in India such as medicine, nursing, pharmacy, law and architecture. These are given equivalence by the relevant professional councils in India.
The vocational degrees and non-degree qualifications such as proficiency, certificate or diploma-level examination awarded by the foreign universities or by non-university level bodies are still not given recognition in India.
Two-year (fast track) degrees awarded by foreign universities are also not recognized.
Foreign degrees awarded to students through the pathway or diploma-level institutions are not given recognition in India.
Open distance education (learning), online degrees and those in the virtual mode from foreign institutions are not given equivalence in India.
Degrees granted for courses completed on offshore campuses of foreign universities are only valid in India, if the offshore campus is duly approved by the competent authorities in that particular country.