A Simple Guide to UGC Academic Bank of Credits

Academic Bank of Credits

A Simple Guide to UGC Academic Bank of Credits

Jul-18-2022, Articles

The UGC Academic Bank of Credits has heralded a much-required change in the existing higher education system and will promote customised learning paths for students.

The University Grants Commission’s (UGC) Academic Bank of Credits has revolutionised the way we understand higher education in India. Bringing unprecedented democracy to learners, the ABC will create customised learning paths for students when leveraged properly.

The National e-Governance Division (NeGD) of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has created the Academic Bank of Credits (ABC) platform, which is based on the DigiLocker framework and provides the ability for students to open Academic Accounts and for Higher Educational Institutions (HEls) to sign up. DigiLocker is a flagship initiative of the Ministry of Electronics & IT (MeitY) under the Digital India programme that provides access to authentic digital documents in a citizen’s digital document wallet.

Understanding Academic Bank of Credits

The takeaways from the implementation of ABCs are multifold and their benefits alone make us understand why the Academic Bank of Credits is important to the Indian Education System.

Centralised Repository: Akin to a bank account, the credit bank will be an online repository where students’ academic credit, calculated on the basis of classwork and tutorials, will be stored. This will offer seamless student mobility between or within degree-granting Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) through a formal system of credit recognition, credit accumulation, credit transfers, and credit redemptionCredits deposited on the ABC platform will be valid for a maximum of seven years or the duration specified for a given discipline. Once the certificate/degree is collected by the students, all the credits earned by them till then will be deleted from their respective accounts. 

Customised Learning: ABC offers learners greater choice and flexibility in choosing courses and institutions, allowing a liberal mix of educational programmes that are vocational, academic and more. A student can avail multiple entry and exit options in higher education institutions and opt for a tailor-made degree. They can choose to study one course a year in one institution and switch to another one the next year. 

Supports Student Mobility: Reduces time commitment, which lowers the risk of student dropout and improves social mobility for economically disadvantaged students. Because students don’t have to start over from scratch, higher education is more approachable and appealing. If students do not or are unable to complete the entire program of study, they can track their progress toward their qualifications and reward the learning that has been completed. This can boost confidence and encourage further learning.

Collaborative Processes: ABC can promote and facilitate inter-institutional partnerships, thereby elevating quality in education. 

Promotes Employability: Promotes the use of vocational courses, multi-disciplinary courses and multi-modal approaches which lead to better career decisions. The adaptability of academic programs will allow students to find employment after receiving any level of award and return as needed to upgrade their qualifications, reduce the dropout rate, and raise the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in higher education. 

Diverse Options: Students who are enrolled in the courses offered by National Schemes like SWAYAM, NPTEL, V-Lab shall also be considered for credit transfer and credit accumulation under this provision. Those admitted to skill courses from registered higher education institutions offering vocational degrees or diplomas or postgraduate diplomas or certificate programmes are also eligible for accrual and redemption of credits under ABC.

EdTech Empowerment: UGC encourages a Blended Teaching-Learning Model for the implementation of ABC. It is recommended that all universities permit students who take courses on the Study Webs of Active Learning for Young Aspiring Minds (SWAYAM) platform to transfer those credits to their academic records. The Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) offered through the SWAYAM platform should be adopted and promoted by universities in order to maximise the benefits for students, according to the UGC. According to the rules governing the SWAYAM platform, an institution may permit SWAYAM to be used for up to 40% of all courses offered in a program during a semester.

Academic Bank of Credits

Academic Bank of Credits

Quick steps for HEIs to join the ABC Programme

  • Register your institution on ABC (www.abc.gov.in). 
  • Upload data of Student Credits obtained during or after the academic year 2021-22.
  • Make the students of your institution aware of the ABC facility and encourage and hand-hold them to open an Academic Bank Account on ABC portal (www.abc.gov.in). 
  • Create a hyperlink to the ABC URL, i.e., www.abc.gov.in on your institution’s respective website’s home page. 
  • Depute the Nodal Officers for implementing ABC and reflecting their details on their websites. 
  • Higher Educational institutions should get all their students to fill up ABC ID on all examination forms.
For any further information, you can contact ABC Cell of UGC on 011-24116316 & abc.ugc@gmail.com

The Essential ABC Glossary

Key Terms in UGC’s Academic Bank of Credits

Credit Accumulation – The facility created by ABC in the Academic Bank Account opened by students in order to transfer and consolidate the credits earned by them by undergoing courses.

Credits Recognition – The credits earned through a registered Higher Educational Institution are transferred directly to the ABC by such HEIs.

Credit Transfer – The mechanism by which registered HEIs are able to receive or provide prescribed credits to individual Academic Bank Accounts in adherence to the UGC credit norms for the course undertaken by students enrolled in any registered HEI within India.

Credit Redemption – The process of commuting the accrued credits in the Academic Bank Accounts of the students maintained in ABC for the purpose of fulfilling the credits requirements for the award of Degrees or Diplomas or Certificates or course work for PhD programmes or similar courses. by the registered degree-awarding HEIs.

Academic Bank Account – An individual account with the Academic Bank of Credit opened and operated by a student, to which all academic credits earned by the student from course(s) of study are deposited, recognised, maintained, accumulated, transferred, validated or redeemed for the purposes of the award of degree/diploma/certificate etc. by an awarding institution. Credits deposited in the ABC platform will be valid for a maximum of seven years or the duration specified for a given discipline.

ABC Updates from UGC

UGC directs institutes to register online and ODL students at ABC portal

Nov 1st, 2022 – The University Grants Commission (UGC) sent a letter to all higher education institutes (HEIs) offering online and ODL programmes to mandatorily register their students at the Academic Bank of Credit (ABC) portal — abc.gov.in.

On the ABC portal, each account holder will be provided with a unique id after they open a unique/individual academic bank account in digital form.

UGC will tomorrow send out a letter to 58 HEIs offering online and 86 HEIs offering ODL programmes, ordering them to compulsorily adopt the ABC portal. HEIs have to mandatorily create Academic Bank of Credit (ABC) ID of students and deposit their credits with ABC for programmes offered in ODL and online mode.

Additionally, LMS of all universities offering online programme may be integrated similarly with ABC portal.

Universities that have introduced this portal are the Delhi University, University Of Mumbai, Jamia Millia Islamia, Jawaharlal Nehru University, National Institute Of Technology Arunachal Pradesh, Tezpur University, Central University Of Punjab, University of Hyderabad, Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), Vellore Institute Of Technology, O P Jindal Global University, Chandigarh University, Datta Meghe Institute Of Medical Sciences, Guru Nanak Dev University, Lovely Professional University,Symbiosis International Deemed University, Bharati Vidyapeeth, Mizoram University, Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya and the English and Foreign Languages University.

Steps to register students at the ABC portal.

Step 1: Visit the Academic Bank of Credit (ABC) portal — abc.gov.in.

Step 2: On the home page, click on the link for ‘my account’ available on the right side top corner, and choose ‘student’ option.

Step 3: You will be redirected to a new window. Login/register using your username/ mobile number or government-issued identification cards.

Step 4: Key in all the required information and upload documents, if needed.

Smitha Thomas Head PR and Communication A Seasoned Editor, Writer and Trainer with strong Researching Skills, Great enthusiasm for Academic Trends and Significant Achievements in Corporate Communications and Publishing

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