A day workshop on NPTEL – Prof Kamala Sundar, IIT-Madras

Author: Adithya B, Asst Prof, Dept of CSE                                                  Date: 29-01-2016

Although not a new thing, many of us have surely sat through the long videos trying to self learn concepts in our study. A very well articulate and formalized technique by Indian Institute of Technology, Madras is “Technology Enabled Learning”(TEL). Faculty and Students of various graduate study call this by the name, NPTEL (National Program on Technology Enabled Learning).

Prof. Kamala Sundar of IITM, shared stories of how NPTEL started as simply a Web based learning to TV channel Ekalavya to Now a video based TEL. He shared his experience on how the role of teachers has changed from Information delivery to problem solving to designing; eventually inculcating the habit of self learning.

Our former president Dr. Radhakrishnan had said and I quote “A good teacher is the one who makes himself progressively unnecessary in the process of teaching”. In the same lines, I am to now believe NPTEL has contributed enough towards making learning; self learning and the stadium model, as Dr. Sundar call it obsolete. It has given a new perspective and meaning to the word “teach” than it was before.

Dr. Sundar in the second session spoke about a open source Learning Management Tool called Moodle, which is now used at college level in many colleges including Jyothy Institute of Technology. He briefed on various features that Moodle offers how it can be easily setup locally. Not just that, he also explained how 8-9 TBs of NPTEL videos can be made available locally to the students of the institution by simply filling out a on-line application forms and copywriter form.

Overall, A well planned and apt topic by Dr. A N Kumar, Dean, R&D, JIT and well co-ordinated by Dr. Rudresh Kumar, Asst. Prof, Dept of Chemistry; that was needed in the time when the semester is about to begin on Feb 1st. At this point I would also like to put it on record that in JIT, few if us have tried our TEL using moodle and got mixed responses from students. Eventually, students have accepted the model and started liking the technique more than we could even imagine. As an appeal I would request Faculty members to spend some time and build video and web content and make it available online.

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