The private universities of the country have been ordered not to allow General Education Development (GED), a four-month international standard course, for admission in undergraduate courses.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has issued a directive regarding this matter and the directive, to be effective from July 31.
In a bid to ensure standards in higher studies, UGC issued this order.
The directive also made a GPA of at least 2.5 mandatory, or a second division in the SSC and HSC exams, for admission to private universities.
All private universities have been asked to comply with the decision.
Dhaka Education Board and UGC sources said a student qualifies for enrolling at a university after getting an HSC certificate. To get the HSC certificate, they have to pass the exams of 1200 marks.
But with the GED course, a student is able to get admitted to the university by studying only four subjects in four months.
The GED diploma has so far been considered equivalent to the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) exams.
Some students could even enroll at the university, obtaining the GED certificate within a month of enrollment.
This opportunity drew flak from various quarters, including academics and guardians, who consider it a major barrier to ensuring standards in higher studies. Education boards also raised questions
UGC Chairman Prof Abdul Mannan said: “HSC is a two-year course, whereas a GED is a four-month diploma course. But both courses offer certificates equivalent to a higher secondary level. These two cannot be equal. There are huge discrepancies.”
“The GED course is based on the syllabus of Europe and the US. Even though this course is equivalent to a higher secondary certificate in other countries, it cannot be similar to HSC in our country. That is why we have scrapped the acceptability of the course.”
“We are not much worried about the decision as very few students enroll at universities in the country after completing this course. Students mainly pursue this course for admission to universities abroad,” said GED Centre course coordinator, Al Amin.