Jawaharlal Nehru University To Start Short-Term Online Courses

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New Delhi: Jawaharlal Nehru University plans to launch diverse short-term online learning programmes this year, officials said on Friday. The university is strategising the development of infrastructure to facilitate e-learning on campus, particularly targeting students from underprivileged backgrounds and rural regions, as reported by news agency PTI.

“JNU has received a HEFA loan of Rs 455 crore and is in the process of creating infrastructure to support faculty members to develop these courses,” B S Balaji, chairperson, Special Center for E-learning, JNU, told PTI.

The university intends to establish a video recording room equipped with cameras, lighting and soundproof facilities. This space will enable teachers to conduct or record classes effectively, he added.

The university also has in pipeline six to eight open online courses on international relations, political science, social sciences, and languages that will be rolled out in the near future, he said.

These courses will be provided through SWAYAM platform. Some of the courses will also be hosted on LMS portal of JNU Digii campus, he added.

“Initially the courses that are developed for JNU Digii campus will be offered only to JNU students and in the future, the university will explore the courses to be offered to students from the entire country,” Balaji said.

“Every effort will be made by JNU to convert these courses into full-fledged programmes in the near future at the earliest,” the official said. The varsity may charge a nominal fee for the courses provided through JNU LMS while the MOOCs provided through SWAYAM are available free of cost, he said.

Currently there is no eligibility criteria for joining SWAYAM courses. Depending on the requirement, the entry criteria will be decided for the JNU-LMS courses, the official said.

These short-term courses will have both live classes and pre-recorded lectures. Discussion forum, pre-scheduled interactions through online platform, and peer learning, are some of the ways by which the students will be able to clear their doubts, he added. 

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