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The Ashoka Scholars Programme

Ashoka University, in compliance with UGC guidelines, offers a 3-year Bachelor‚Äôs Degree programme.  It also offers a year-long Postgraduate Diploma in Advanced Studies and Research (DipASR).

All undergraduates graduating with Bachelor‚Äôs Degrees at the end of their third year, or who have completed by that time at least academic 92 credits of their degree programme, are eligible for admission into the Postgraduate Diploma in Advanced Studies and Research programme, also known as the Ashoka Scholars Programme (ASP). Students who need to complete up to 8 credits of their undergraduate degree must do so within the first semester of the ASP. All students who fall into either of these categories must formally apply for admission to the ASP towards the end of the Spring semester of their third year. The exact date will be circulated by the OAA. 

Students who graduate with a Bachelor‚Äôs degree after more than 3 years (late graduates) and students who have taken a break of up to one year after their UG graduation (gap students) are also eligible to apply for the ASP, provided the following condition is met: at the beginning of the Monsoon semester of the ASP, the start of their UG studies cannot be longer ago than 5 years. This is to secure compliance with UGC Guidelines, according to which UG+ASP must be completed in no more than 6 years. 

Such students must submit a formal application to the OAA, comprising a statement of interest in joining the ASP supplemented by faculty and/or departmental references in support of their application. These applications will be decided on by a committee that will seek input from various stakeholders and provide students with a final decision on their application. 

Academic Requirements for the ASP

The ASP offers students a defining liberal arts experience that blends academic rigour with a wide range of elective options across a variety of subjects.  These options include:

  1. Completing an Advanced Major 
  2. Converting a Minor or previously taken elective courses into a Second Major Equivalent
  3. Converting a Major into an Interdisciplinary Second Major Equivalent
  4. Completing an Independent Capstone Project 
  5. Completing a Minor 
  6. Completing a Concentration 
  7. Undertaking the Ashoka Quest, a year-long social internship programme [currently on hold]
  8. Taking any courses they wish, without completing any of the above options

  • Basic Requirements

    All ASP students, by completing the Postgraduate Diploma in Advanced Studies and Research, will become eligible to apply for postgraduate programmes in North America and other parts of the world that require 12 years of study at the secondary school level and 4 years of study at the university level.
    1. A total of¬†32 credits¬†is required to graduate from the ASP with a Postgraduate Diploma in Advanced Studies and Research. Students can complete up to 2×22 =¬†44 credits¬†during their ASP year, up to¬†52 credits¬†if they also take two courses in the summer preceding the ASP year. Credits, if any, that are used to complete undergraduate requirements do¬†not¬†count towards the 32 credit minimum requirement.
    2. Students must in any event take enough courses during their ASP year that they can meet the 32 credit requirement. Typically, this means that they will take between 16 and 22 (max.) credits per semester.
    3. If students take summer courses that count towards the ASP or decide to take more courses in the Spring and fewer in the Monsoon, they may do so as long as they adhere to 2) and to the minimum credit requirement of 12 credits per semester.
    4. For students who are trying to complete their undergraduate degree requirements (up to 8 academic credits), a maximum of 6 courses will be allowed in the first semester of the ASP if required.
    5. ASP students are eligible to take any undergraduate course offered at Ashoka University for which they have fulfilled the prerequisite(s). Students can also take 4000 level seminars where these are offered.
    6. If students opt to pursue specific credentials, such as e.g. a Minor or Concentration, wish to convert a Minor into the equivalent of a second Major, pursue an Advanced Major, etc. they will take courses as per the requirements of the specific programme.

    The specific requirements for each of the options are spelled out below.

  • Advanced Major

    The exact design of the Advanced Major credential is determined by individual departments as per their specific requirements, within a credit bracket of minimally 16 and maximally 24 credits.

    In many departments, pursuing an Advanced Major will require the completion of a Capstone Thesis project, which will typically involve a Capstone Research Seminar and a Capstone Thesis Seminar. However, not every department will require a Capstone Thesis as an element of the Advanced Major and among those that do, the requirements and credits associated with it will be department-specific. Accordingly, interested students are advised to consult the website of the respective department or contact a department representative for details and further clarification.

     

  • Second Major Equivalent

    ASP students can complete an Ashoka University-approved Second Major Equivalent (SME) by taking the required number of courses in any given Major programme. Courses taken in the SME subject during a student‚Äôs Bachelor‚Äôs Degree will be credited toward the SME that appears on the student‚Äôs PG Diploma transcript. A SME can also grow out of an Interdisciplinary Major completed as the student’s Bachelor’s degree, e.g. if the student completes the relevant courses in any of the components of their Interdisciplinary Major that are missing towards meeting the respective Major requirement.

    Normally, SMEs will require ASP students to take at least six and no more than ten courses in the SME subject during the PG Diploma year. Provided the respective department allows it, students may also complete a Capstone Thesis project in their SME subject to meet their course requirements.

  • Second Major Equivalent - Interdisciplinary

    Students can use the ASP to convert a UG Major into an Interdisciplinary Major Equivalent by taking the remaining courses towards the Interdisciplinary Major. Students interested in this option should plan ahead and are in any case advised to consult with the relevant departments to find out about the specific requirements and whether and how they need to take courses in such a way that they can meet these requirements.

  • Independent Capstone

    Provided they find an advisor who is able and willing to supervise it, students can pursue an Independent Capstone project in any of Ashoka University’s approved (Pure) Major or Minor Programmes. This gives students¬†inter alia¬†the opportunity to carry out a substantial thesis project even in areas that do not offer a Major or an Advanced Major.

     

     

  • Minor

    ASP students can complete an Ashoka University-approved Minor by taking six approved courses in any given Major or Minor programme. Departments may have specific requirements as to which courses a student pursuing a Minor must take and students are advised to consult the respective departmental website for details.

    Courses taken in the Minor subject during the student’s Bachelor’s Degree will be credited toward the Minor that appears on the student’s PG Diploma transcript. Normally, completing a Minor will require ASP students to take at least one and no more than six courses in the Minor subject during the PG Diploma year.

  • Concentration

    ASP students can complete an Ashoka University-approved Concentration by taking four approved courses in any given Major or Minor programme, including approved multidisciplinary subjects that are not represented by Major and Minor programmes (e.g. a Concentration in Legal Studies). Courses taken in the Concentration subject during a student’s Bachelor’s Degree will be credited toward the Concentration that appears on the student’s PG Diploma transcript. Normally Concentrations will require ASP students to take at least one and no more than four courses in the Minor subject during the PG Diploma year.

  • The Ashoka Quest

    Currently, the Ashoka Quest rests. Once this changes, this section will be updated accordingly.

  • Taking any courses

    The ASP can be used as a year in which students take a variety of courses in different areas to increase the breadth of their exposure to the various liberal arts and science programmes offered at Ashoka. This can be an exciting opportunity for students who want to broaden their horizon or who wish to acquire an individual academic skill-set.

    For further questions please contact the Office of Academic Affairs at: oaa@ashoka.edu.in

Frequently Asked Questions

Ashoka University had originally designed its UG programme as a 4-year degree and thus we believe that the 4-year undergraduate experience transforms students into an Ashoka liberal arts honours student. It helps them to be academically well-rounded and socially engaged. It makes them better prepared for the job market and also for postgraduate study.

In addition, students who want to pursue a Masters or a PhD degree in the US or Canada will need an equivalent of a four-year undergraduate degree. Therefore all students who are considering a Masters /PhD. Degree abroad should definitely do the 4th year.

Students can do a variety of courses, research, and academic writing and social experiential projects in the fourth year:

  • Completing an Advanced Major

  • Complete an Interdisciplinary Second Major Equivalent

  • Completing an Independent Capstone project

  • Starting and/or Completing a Minor

  • Completing a Concentration

  • Converting a Minor, previously taken elective courses, or part of an Interdisciplinary Major¬†into a Second Major Equivalent

  • Taking any courses they wish, without completing any of the above options

All Ashoka students graduating with Bachelor’s Degrees at the end of their third year, or who have completed at least 92 credits by that time of their degree programme, are eligible for admission into the Postgraduate Diploma in Advanced Studies and Research programme, also known as the Ashoka Scholars Programme (ASP)

Please note: In order to complete the Bachelor’s Degree, students need 100 credits but they are eligible for ASP with 92 academic credits. Students who need to complete up to 8 academic credits of their undergraduate degree must do so in Semester 1 of ASP (Monsoon Semester). In case of students trying to complete their undergraduate degree requirements, a maximum of 6 courses will be allowed in semester 1.

 

Students who graduate with a Bachelor’s degree after more than 3 years (late graduates) and students who have taken a break of up to one year after their UG graduation (gap students) are also eligible to apply for the ASP, provided the following condition is met: at the beginning of the Monsoon semester of the ASP, the start of their UG studies cannot be longer ago than 5 years. This is to secure compliance with UGC Guidelines, according to which UG+ASP must be completed in no more than 6 years.

The UGC demands that we offer undergraduate degrees that can be completed in three years. This is why Major Courses, Foundation Courses (including the ICT), and Co-Curricular Courses have to be completed by the end of three years. However, Ashoka University has always conceived of its undergraduate programme as a 4-year experience and therefore the University offers another year, the ASP year, which will be the crowning year of a liberal arts education.

The Financial Aid status for Ashoka students remains unchanged for the ASP. The Financial Aid awarded to them for their UG studies will continue at the same level for the fourth year. Only students who start the ASP after a gap may need to get reevaluated for Financial Aid.

ASP is open to graduates of the 3 year B.A. / B. Sc. programmes at Ashoka University. Students must formally apply through the registration portal of the University.

Students will get a Post Graduate Diploma at the end of the one year. There will be a formal graduation ceremony along with the University’s annual Convocation.

Ashoka University will treat all the graduating students of the ASP programme as alums who will be assisted by the Career Development Office (CDO) in their job search.

Study at Ashoka

Study at Ashoka