The 66th Republic Day Celebrations will mark the launching of IITBombayX
(the eXtended online educational services from IIT Bombay) for the benefit of Indian learners, and training workshops for teachers.
IIT Bombay has added significant functionality to the Open edX platform to create and offer MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) from IITBombayX. This includes modifications to make it suitable for blended MOOCs and Indian language interfaces. This functionality will be extended in future to also cover the special needs of school education and vocational training.
The courses can be accessed on the website https://www.iitbombayx.in. The first three courses being offered on the IITBombayX platform are:
Introduction to Computer Programming, by Prof. Deepak B Phatak and Prof. Supratik Chakraborty; Dept of Computer Science and Engineering;
Thermodynamics by Prof. U. N. Gaitonde, Prof. U. V. Bhandarkar, and Prof. M. D. Atrey; Dept of Mechanical Engineering;
Signals and Systems by Prof. Vikram Gadre, Dept of Electrical Engineering
Speaking about IITBombayX, Prof. Uday Gaitonde, faculty member with Mechanical Engineering Department of the Institute said, “MOOCs provide a very pleasant satisfaction of reaching out to a large number of students – from 15-year-olds to 75-year-olds. The feedback received is also diverse, and hence rich and valuable”.
IITBombayX will also simultaneously offer training workshops for teachers on ‘effective teaching and mentoring students in online courses’, for each of these three subjects, under T10KT (Train 10,000 Teachers) Project. College teachers will now be trained on how to effectively enhance the learning of students, by mentoring the students of online courses. They will be trained to do this through discussion forums, as also through face-to-face interaction with students of their colleges who register for MOOCs. Faculty from IIT Bombay will be arranging live interactive sessions every fortnight, for such students and teachers.
In addition to traditional course materials such as videos, readings, and problem sets, IITBombayX provides interactive user forums like discussions, quizzes, instant feedback that will help build a community of students, professors, and teaching assistants (TAs).
About the Courses:
The Introduction to Computer Programming Part 1, a 8-week will introduce the basic concepts of computer programming starting with the notion of an algorithm. The Introduction to Computer Programming Part 2 course is also a 8-week course that builds on the basic foundation in computer programming; discusses structures, pointers, and file management; and ends with an introduction to the Object Oriented Programming paradigm. Both parts together correspond to the Computer Programming course at IITB.
The Course on Thermodynamics will run for 12-weeks, and is designed for students of mechanical engineering.
Signals and Systems course Part 1, an 8-week course, explores the various properties of signals and systems, characterization of Linear Shift Invariant Systems, convolution and Fourier Transform. Signals and Systems, Part 2 is also an 8-week course, which deals with the Sampling theorem, Z-Transform, discrete Fourier transform and Laplace transform.
Students will get an honour certificate of achievement certifying successful completion of the course after they have qualified in the tests.
Speaking on the benefits for these courses for Indian students, Prof. Phatak remarked, “Students normally learn similar subjects and topics as part of their degree course. Our online courses will give them an exposure to the teaching and learning style of the IIT system, with its emphasis on solving hard problems, interactive discussions, explanation of difficult concepts, and continuous assessment with feedback. We believe that this will help them to further extend their knowledge of the subjects, and their skills in solving associated practical problems”.