Education Amid Pandemic: IIT Bhubaneswar Commences New Academic Year On Time

Bhubaneswar: At a time when states, students and institutions debate on when to reopen schools and colleges, the Indian Institute Of Technology (IIT) Bhubaneswar has left the controversy far behind. The institute commenced classes for the new academic year for its on-roll and new students on August 17.

An official release by the institute announced it had commenced classes on August 17, for old and new postgraduate (M.Tech, M.Sc, and Ph.D) students. The classes are being live-streamed for students to be attended from the comforts of their homes, without the risk of catching the infection.

The present semester has started almost on time, with only a delay of three weeks compared to the normal or non-pandemic situation. The students will be brought to the campus through an SOP as the situation improves and permits.

Speaking on the occasion, Director of the institute, Prof RV Raja Kumar said, “We could start the new academic year on time and we are now left with the only challenge of commencing the classes for fresh and 2020-21 batch of BTech students. Now that JEE Mains and JEE (Advanced) examinations are scheduled for (01 – 06) and 27th of September 2020, respectively, we will be able to admit the students, and commence their classes after a couple of months and save the academic year of the BTech fresher’s (sic)”.

“It is certainly feasible to cope with the pandemic and reduce the risks by being conscious and by taking the precautions to give the right opportunities for our youth,” he further added.

Prof Kumar also said that the pandemic forced them to start the new academic year through online mode. It has some drawbacks and some advantages too. Our endeavour should be to minimise the disadvantages and capitalise on the advantages.

IIT Bhubaneswar has advised faculty members to effectively teach online, maintain connect and interaction, experiment, and innovate the online mode of teaching.

The release also stated that the hands-on laboratory will be made available when the students return to the campus.
However, online laboratory training will be provided alongside the theory classes to not affect the learning process.

“IIT Bhubaneswar completed its education of the last academic year without any compromises and timely by live streaming of classes, conducting remaining laboratory classes and thesis work by online means, conducting conventional examinations by creating and adopting a unique and very innovative online method for all of its students, despite the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Dr Pravas R Sahu, Dean (Academic).

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