Over the past decade, the UK has been one of the most popular destinations for Indian students planning to study abroad. Home to some of the most prestigious and renowned universities, the UK is covered by Indian students for its educational legacy and rich culture that cultivates a global outlook. But that’s not all: Education is a key pillar of the India-UK bilateral relationship and both countries have been actively working together to create greater opportunities in higher education for students.
In recent years, for the benefit of students across India and the UK, the two countries have worked together on key strategic initiatives.
Introduction of the Mutual Recognition of Qualifications
Enabled by the newly-minted National Education Policy (2020) and the visionary India-UK Roadmap (2030), the two nations signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to officially recognise each other’s academic qualifications on July 21, 2022.
The MoU was envisioned to expand the cooperation and exchange between the higher education systems and boost opportunities for students across the two countries. The Mutual Recognition of Qualifications (MRQ) will promote two-way mobility of students, in turn, opening up multiple avenues for the learning and employment of students.
Under this historic agreement, higher education credentials of both countries, such as bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degrees, are recognised by each other. This implies, for instance, that upper-secondary education credentials from India are accepted as permissible admission standards for UK higher education institutions. Indian graduates are now allowed to apply for post-doctoral degrees when they return home thanks to the formal recognition of UK master’s degrees in India, which they were previously unable to do.
The agreement can facilitate the mobility of professionals across borders, making it easier for them to work or pursue further studies between both countries. They will improve career prospects with new opportunities for professionals by allowing them to work in fields that are relevant to their qualifications.
The agreement will also promote cooperation and understanding between India and the UK in the field of education and training.
Additionally, the arrangement will foster cultural exchange by encouraging professionals to travel and work in different countries, promoting greater understanding and tolerance among different cultures.
It will thereby have a positive impact on the economy through a diverse, inclusive and skilled workforce. Another benefit to professionals of both the countries will be the time and money saved by the reduced administrative burden and costs associated with getting their qualifications recognised.
What’s covered under the MRQ agreement
The MoU complements the vision of the NEP to internationalise education and create globally employable graduates. It opens the door for academic institutions to also create courses fit to be delivered in both nations making them important study destinations for each other’s talents
Though almost 80 per cent of all subjects opted by students are covered, subjects including engineering, medicine, nursing, para-medical education, pharmacy, law, and architecture are out of the purview of the MoU. This is because the MoU only covers higher education qualifications and not specialised courses or professional degrees at the moment.
How a student can benefit
MRQs are relevant to students looking to study in the UK in several ways.
First is the recognition of qualifications, which allows students from other countries who have obtained educational qualifications to have them recognised by UK authorities, making it easier for them to study in the UK.
It also provides for a simplified application process. Students who have obtained qualifications recognized under an MRQ agreement may be eligible for streamlined application process for studying in the UK, which can make it easier for them to be admitted in the UK educational institutions.
Recognition of qualifications from other countries in the UK can pen up new career opportunities for students in the UK. They will also be able to work in fields that are relevant to their qualifications.
Additionally, it will cultivate mutual understanding between countries by facilitating the recognition of educational qualifications and the mobility of professionals.
should be noted that MRQs agreement is non-binding and does not guarantee recognition of qualifications, but provides a framework for cooperation and dialogue between the two countries on these issues.
India is undoubtedly gifted with amazing human resources, but there have been repeated calls from businesses for enhanced expertise in addressing skills gaps. The MRQ agreement between India and UK will be crucial for increasing the availability of in-demand skills and provide solid ground to students looking to launch international careers.
Courtesy : The Indian Express