The oldest technical institution of the country, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee, conducted a virtual ceremony to introduce seven new academic programs, which will be offered to the students from the upcoming Autumn Session (2021-2022). The institution added six postgraduate degree programs and one five-year integrated program into its curriculum. These programs were specifically designed to address the rising demand for new-age technologies, governed by rapid digitalisation and advanced technology. The new programs will create a significant impact in the higher education sector in India. The seven new programs included M. Tech. (Artificial Intelligence) and M. Tech. (Data Science) under the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Data Science (CAIDS), M. Des. (Industrial Design), and MIM (Masters in Innovation Management) under the Department of Design, Online M. Tech. (Microelectronics and VLSI) for working industry professionals under the Department of Electronics and Communication Engineering, MS Economics (Five Year Integrated program) under the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, and M. Tech. (Dam Safety and Rehabilitation) under the proposed ‘International Centre for Dams’ (currently coordinated by Department of Hydrology). These degree programs will facilitate quality education in select areas of
engineering, architecture, economics, and management along with in the specialized areas like Data Science and Artificial Intelligence.
The institution, in line with the transformative reforms introduced by National Education Policy, 2020, has launched these courses to widen the scope of its offering, making it accessible to more, including working professionals. These courses have been designed to equip students/ working professionals with theoretical knowledge and technical know-how to add value to their respective fields. These new programs will bridge the gap between learning and required experience as well as alter the mindset towards learning by making it more flexible, accessible, and a life-long process than onetime acquisition. In designing the new courses, IITR has been mindful of keeping intact the core philosophy professed by NEP, 2020, i.e. blending practical and professional learning approaches to produce a highly efficient, productive and talented workforce.
B. V. R. Mohan Reddy, Chairman, Board of Governors at Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, chaired the launch event. The Chief Guest of the event was Professor Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. Prof. Apurbba Kumar Sharma, Dean of Academic Affairs, welcomed the participants and highlighted the significance of the new programs and initiatives of IIT Roorkee to fulfil the demand of future technologies in higher education. The concerned Head of the Deptt. and Centres introduced the programs.
Lauding the institution for its progressive move, Chief Guest of the event, Professor Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, said, “I am so delighted to see the launch of these 7 new academic programmes and to hear about their outlines and philosophy. New Initiatives of this kind separate the leaders from followers. I wish everybody all the very best in going forward with it. Thank you so much for having me here with all and learning about all the great things going on at IIT Roorkee”
Commenting on the launch of the new programs, B. V. R. Mohan Reddy, Chairman, Board of Governors, IIT Roorkee, said, “I congratulate IIT Roorkee for the launch of 7 new academic programs. IIT Roorkee is making good progress in creating interdisciplinary programs and for starting the programs which are in demand and relevant to the nation today, because we are also aiming for Atma Nirbhar Bharat so innovation becomes an integral part of our future. There is another need for entrepreneurship in this country and I recommend entrepreneurship programs to make sure we have a lot more job creators as a post to job seekers.”
Appreciating the move taken by the institute Prof. Ajit K Chaturvedi, Director, IIT Roorkee, said, “All the new academic programs initiated address the needs of our country. They have been created after careful deliberations at several levels. To offer these programs, IIT Roorkee has established one new department i.e. Department of Design and one new centre i.e. Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Data Science. Further, given the interdisciplinary nature of another program, the Institute created a program committee with representation from four departments.”
M. Tech. (Microelectronics and VLSI) is a 3-year program designed for working professionals. It is a flexible course for those who want to upgrade their career and cannot attend regular on-campus classes. This online degree will intend to prepare students for managerial engineering roles in the industry. M. Tech. in Dam Safety and Rehabilitation program is a two-year program. It will train the sponsored officers working in the area to deal with challenges of safety and rehabilitation of the older dams and design of new dams. Any graduate of the relevant area can join this course. The MS Economics (Five Year Integrated program) is a five-year integrated program to equip students with the tools needed by a professional economist in government or other organisations or to carry out research. A student can exit from this course after four years by getting a BS degree.
The M. Des. (Industrial Design) and MIM (Masters in Innovation Management) are two-year programs, which focuses on developing Documentation and Archival Repository of Design Innovation practices at the grassroot level. It also aims at building a friendly environment between academia and the industry to address the relevant societal issues through co-creation and their transformation into products. The virtual centre CAIDS is offering, two-year masters’ programs M.Tech. (Artificial Intelligence) and M. Tech (Data Science) to develop new and skilled manpower, by offering focused training and promoting research and consultancy. Besides, it aims to aid the projects related to Artificial Intelligence and Data Science, running at national and international levels.