Students of the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Massachusetts, will now be able to access the classroom lectures of the reputed Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs).

Last Updated: 2012-01-02T00:12:04+05:30

MIT Students to Access IIT Classroom Lectures

Mumbai: Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) have finally succeeded in establishing a prominent mark in the world map. These esteemed institutions, offering engineering and technology-oriented higher education, have agreed to join the OpenCourseWare (OCW) community of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Massachusetts, United States.
Confirming the news, Mangala Sunder Krishnan, NPTEL coordinator, IIT-Madras, said that they have accepted the proposal offered by MIT to join the Open Education Resource Consortium. With such a unique step, the academic world will open new doors of enhanced and professional studies, he added.
With this initiative, accessing the classroom content and lecturers of IITs for MIT students will be just a mouse’s click away. However, IITs first declined the offer to join MIT’s OCW community back in 2007 on the pretext of being a very young institute to become a part of the world of open source learning. Over the four years, IITs have grown and caught up with other worldwide leading institutions who are members of the open source community.
IITs, over the course of time, have also launched their own curriculum-based video and web course programme, National Programme for Technology Enhanced Learning (NPTEL), to enhance the reach and quality of technical education in India. Apart from OCW community, IITs will be offering the lecturers taught in their classrooms on Apple’s multi-media platform iTunes. In addition, IIT courses are available at a separate channel of YouTube.
MIT hosts links to their courseware, not just from IITs, but also from other prestigious universities including Yale, Peking, Harvard Law School, Tufts, UC Irvine, Notre Dame and Utah State. Furthermore, Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Bangalore is already a member of MIT’s OCW community.
The NPTEL programme has been joined by seven of the old IITs and Indian Institute of Science in the recent times. However, NPTEL offers slight differences from the open courses offered by the American universities. While NPTEL emphasizes largely on all topics in every course, right from introduction to conclusion, the initiative offered by America does not substitute class work though it is highly enriching and motivating. NPTEL, on the other hand, allows students to study conveniently while sitting at home.

The NPTEL content has been provided to over 500 engineering colleges in India, wherein students can access and study through the college intranet. In comparison to the 9.37 lakh visitors to the NPTEL website in 2008, the number has risen to 44.39 lakh in December 2011.

- By Madiha Wasi
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