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The University Grants Commission (UGC) has framed draft guidelines and curriculum framework for Environment Education at Under Graduate (UG) level.
The higher education regulator in 2013 had come up with a core module syllabus for compulsory implementation of Environmental Studies at the UG level following the directives of the Supreme Court. In 2017, UGC had subsequently framed an eight unit’s module syllabus for the Ability Enhancement Compulsory Course (AECC-Environmental Studies) under the Choice Based Credit System (CBCS).
Total credits of the Course = 4
As per UGC Curriculum and Credit Framework for Undergraduate Programmes, a one credit of tutorial work means one-hour engagement per week. UGC further said that there will be one credit tutorial in a course which is equivalent to 15 hours of engagement in a semester of 15 weeks duration.
A one-credit course in practicum or lab work, community engagement and services, and field work in a semester will be equivalent to two-hour engagement per week.
In a semester of 15 weeks duration, a one credit practicum in a course is equivalent to 30 hours of engagement.
The draft guidelines document is expected to cater to students from diverse disciplinary backgrounds and also includes topics to sensitise students about the commitment of the nation towards achieving sustainable development goals, said UGC Chairman, Prof. M. Jagadesh Kumar.
According to Kumar, the United Nations Members in 2015 adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It also provides a detailed blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. At present the issues of pollution, loss of forests, solid waste disposal, degradation of the environment, issues like economic productivity and national security, global warming, the depletion of the ozone layer and loss of biodiversity have made everyone aware of environmental issues.
Out of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), six goals are directly linked to environmental protection and resource conservation,” said Kumar.
The National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 highlights the importance of making environmental education an integral part of curriculum