In a major policy shift, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has announced that the National Eligibility Test (NET), State Eligibility Test (SET) and State Level Eligibility Test (SLET) will now be mandatory for direct recruitment to the position of Assistant Professor in higher education institutions. Additionally, the UGC has made PhD qualifications optional for aspiring Assistant Professors.

The UGC’s decision, outlined in a recent Gazette Notification, marks a significant departure from the previous regulations governing the appointment of teachers and academic staff in universities and colleges. The amendments come into effect immediately, bringing about notable changes in the recruitment process for Assistant Professors.

Under the revised regulations, candidates seeking direct recruitment as Assistant Professors must qualify the NET, SET, or SLET exams. These eligibility tests are designed to assess a candidate’s knowledge, understanding and competence in their respective fields. By setting this mandatory requirement, the UGC aims to ensure that candidates possess a solid foundation in their subject matter and are well-prepared to deliver quality education to students.

Simultaneously, the UGC has made a significant modification regarding PhD qualifications. While previously considered a prerequisite for Assistant Professor positions, the UGC has now made a PhD degree optional. This adjustment opens doors for candidates who possess strong academic expertise and teaching skills but may not have completed a doctoral program.

It is important to note that while a PhD is no longer mandatory, it continues to hold significant value in academia. Doctoral degrees remain highly regarded for research-based positions, and they can enhance career prospects and open doors to advanced academic opportunities.