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After concern was raised by different quarters in India on the quality of the research topics being worked for PhDs as well as the duplication of certain PhD themselves, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has announced that they will be conducting a pan India study of the quality of the research thesis being conducted across India. The study will be looking over all the research topics that have been undertaken by the research students across all the university in India in the past decade. As per sources, UGC has invited proposals from individuals or groups for conducting the study. The study will need to be done in a span of 6 months as per sources.
The UGC has said it will soon release a set of parameters to check for instances of self-plagiarism or recycling of text. Earlier, there were several guidelines from the Ministry of Human Resource Development and UGC which warned about plagiarism in research. Reproducing, in part or whole one's previously published work without giving proper acknowledgement and citation and claiming it as new will not be accepted. Also, breaking up a long study into smaller sections and publishing them as new by reusing the old data will not be accepted from now on.
A senior official from the Higher Education Regulator states that the UGC has planned to conduct the study on “Quality of PhD Thesis in Indian Universities”. The study will ensure that the quality of the research thesis is conducted for all the disciplines of study. They will also ensure that the PhDs that have been offered in the past 10 years to the students in the different Central Universities, State and Private Universities, as well as Deemed-to-be-Universities, will be involved in the study.
The Official also added that the study will be conducted all over India so as to bring a result that can be assessed, both at the National as well as the State-level. The parties that are interested in conducting the study will be determining the quality aspects, which will be the benchmark for the PhD thesis all across the country.
The University Grants Commission has asked all the interested parties to send in the proposals that they have planned for the study, including the track record and capabilities of the parties interested as well as the procedures that they will undertake along with the budget that will be required by the individual party.