MOOC to Take Education to Every Doorstep: Syas HRD Minister Raju

Aiming to take education to every doorstep, Union HRD minister M M Pallam Raju on Thursday said they intend to leverage the broadband network by embracing the ‘Massive Open Online Courses’ (MOOC) programme in a big way.

“…to make education more accessible, we have in the horizon MOOC, leveraging on the broadband education platform,” Raju said at a function here while harping on sustainable development through such efforts.

“We want to embrace MOOC in a big way to increase the number of literates in the country. Institutions must become creators of knowledge,” he said.

Stating that the key to sustainable development lies in innovation, Raju said the goal of his ministry is to see that that universities and institutions lead the innovation agenda and be the catalyst for the process in the economy.

The HRD ministry, he said, has asked all Centrally funded institutes such as the IITs and NITs to be role models for green campuses.

The minister was speaking at the Darbari Seth Memorial Lecture here organised by TERI.

The efficacy of the MOOC platform to reach the countless millions across the country was underlined by S Ramadorai, who is the advisor to the Prime Minister in the National Skill Development Council.

“The technology has given an opportunity to students to unshackling access to quality content and education bypassing the difficulty to get admission into the expensive institutions,” Ramadorai said.

Last month, he said, seven IITs have announced India’a own MOOC platform.

Ramadorai said India needs to change its traditional mindset and go for innovation across the sectors if it wishes to maintain its competitive edge in the global economy.

He especially suggested massive innovations in sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing and the small and medium scale industries who contribute 45 per cent of the manufacturing output and 60 million employees.

The government, he said, is offering as much as USD 2.5 billion as incentives to chipmakers to entice them to build India’s first semi-conductor manufacturing plant, which would be an important step in building a domestic hardware industry.

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