On the lines of the BSc degree offered by the IIT-Madras now other IITs and IISc will soon offer online degree courses. IIT-Kanpur is all set to launch an e-masters program in specific areas including cybersecurity communication, power sector among others while IISc Bangalore will launch an e-masters data science business analytics.
This was one of the points of discussion in meetings between the heads of IITs, IISc, centrally-funded institutes with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and newly-appointed Minister of Education Dharmendra Pradhan.
During the interaction, Prime Minister underlined the need to progress towards education models that are flexible, seamless, and able to provide learning opportunities as per the requirements of the learners. He said that access, affordability, equity, and quality should be the core values of such education models.
Offering full-time online degrees was one of the many suggestions under the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. IIT-Madras was the first institute to have launched an undergraduate level degree course online in 2020, had received 30,276 applications for its BSc programme (online) in its first cycle itself. Now, more institutes are to follow suit.
These online degrees will make IITs, IIMs more reachable to a larger population but also aims at increasing the gross enrolment ratio (GER) in the country.
In the existing online degrees accessibility of degrees from the comfort of home has given a push to female enrolment. While female enrolment is the lowest in institutes of national importance, in online space women are having a greater share. As much as 44.5 per cent of total learners in ODL (online distance learning) mode are females, as per the AISHE data.
As reported by news18.com earlier, even as online degrees are making the IITs and IIMs more accessible. The smaller colleges now face a challenge of either upgrading their quality of education or vanishing as students would prefer an online degree from a top colleges than those from local colleges which are not up to the mark.