If you are a college student or about to go to college, you must have heard or read about how students should pursue their higher education degree courses from a UGC-DEB-approved university or college.

However, you never thought much about what UGC-DEB is and why it is very important.

Therefore, in the following article, you will get comprehensive information about the UGC-DEB and AICTE. You will also understand why UGC-DEB/AICTE approvals are required for online degree programs and one-year degree programs.

What are Online Degree Courses?

Online degree courses or distance education courses where students can complete their graduation courses from home are becoming more popular. Therefore, an online course allows students to attend classes with the help of the internet and technologies such as laptops, computers, or mobile phones.

So, in online degree courses, you do not need to leave your home in order to pursue your graduation courses at any traditional college.

Furthermore, the first two distance open universities are B.R. Ambedkar University and Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), and both were established in 1982 and 1885, respectively. Though distance education by open universities has been providing distance education courses for around three decades. However, the advancement of technology has improved distance education as students can now take online courses. 

What is UGC/DEB/AICTE Approval?

University Grants Commission (UGC)

The University Grants Commission is a government legislative body that was established in 1956 under the UGC Act. The UGC works to maintain the standard of higher education in India. Additionally, the University Grants Commission (UGC) comes under the ministry of education.

Therefore, it is obligatory for higher education colleges or institutes to get the approval of the UGC to provide the graduation courses to students. 

Distance Education Bureau (DEB)

The University Grants Commission has a body of its own that is the Distance Education Bureau – DEB So, the DEB was established for distance and open education to maintain their standard in providing distance education courses. The Distance Education Bureau was established in 2012, and before that, there was the Distance Education Council (DEC). 

Therefore, those universities that offer distance education or open education courses must be recognized by the DEB, otherwise, their distance courses are not going to be valid by the government of India for getting a job or pursuing higher education. 

All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE)

AICTE has been established under the department of higher education in India. So, AICTE is a national-level council for technical education and it works as an advisory council for the improvement of technical education, proper management, and management education in India. 

Additionally, AICTE is responsible for providing recommendations and guidance to the colleges that are affiliated with the universities. Additionally, bodies like AICTE and UGC have the power to regulate all the higher education colleges and institutes. 

Why is UGC-DEB/AICTE Important for Distance Education Courses?

The major work of the UGC-DEB and AICTE is to stop fake or illegal institutes from growing in the country and provide quality distance education for students. As distance education courses started to become popular, many new universities came into existence to provide distance education courses. However, not every distance university has the quality of distance education services. 

Therefore, it is necessary to have the recognition of the UGC-DEB for universities if they want to provide distance education for the students. While providing distance education, it is the responsibility of the distance universities to keep up with the standards of higher education. 

Additionally, UGC-DEB takes a meticulous inspection of the distance universities before approving them to offer distance education. So, they check the standards of the infrastructure, faculty, curriculum, staff, and management in a distance education university. 

As a result, this would be beneficial for students who want to enrol in a fake or illegal university and pursue higher education courses. Therefore, it is crucial for students to apply only to UGC-DEB accredited universities or colleges if they want their online degree to be valid. 

Furthermore, it is not mandatory for every distance college to be approved by the AICTE to provide distance education courses. However, if they are approved by the AICTE, it could enhance the credibility of the colleges. Besides that, technical institutes that require AICTE approval are affiliated with universities. 

Do One Sitting Degree Courses Need to be Approved by UGC-DEB?

Yes, like the distance and online degree courses in India, one sitting degree courses also need to be approved by the UGC-DEB in order to be valid. If your one sitting degree is not approved by the UGC-DEB, you will not be able to get a job with that degree. 

If you do not know what a one sitting degree or single sitting degree is, it is a one-year degree program in which students can complete their three-year or two-year graduation courses in one year. Also, there are some special conditions for opting for a single sitting degree. 

So, students who passed their first or second year in one college and want to complete their remaining courses in another college, have a gap of at least three years between their graduation degree and the 12th, or dropped out in the middle of their graduation course, are eligible to complete their graduation degree courses in 1 year. Additionally, in a graduation degree one-year course, students can take all three or two-year exams in a single sitting at the end of the course. 


As you learn about the University Grants Commission (UGC), Distance Education Bureau (DEB), and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), you will be able to make more informed decisions while choosing a distance college. Also, get to know the workings of those bodies and their importance. 

Therefore, now you can be aware while looking for a distance education college to pursue online degree courses that the college is approved by the UGC-DEB. Also, you can tell other students to check the UGC-DEB approval of the college before applying for admission.