J&K’s academic calendar now in sync with rest of India: Kansal

J&K’s academic calendar now in sync with rest of India: Kansal
Photo: Jammu and Kashmir Information Department

Jammu, July 26: Principal Secretary Higher Education Department Rohit Kansal here Monday said that Jammu and Kashmir’s academic calendar was now in sync with the rest of India.

An official spokesman in a statement issued here said that chairing the inaugural session of a two-day national conference on National Education Policy-2020 in Jammu, Kansal said that J&K would be among the first in the country to fully implement the NEP.

He said that the NEP aims to break down silos and create a multi-disciplinary, flexible educational ecosystem that would equip learners to be not just employable but also better equipped for the fast-changing world.

Kansal called upon the colleges to reorient their curriculum and teaching methodologies and be ready to impart education in new courses which include technical, skill, language, and other courses under the multidimensional approach of the NEP.

He said that the students would also now have the option of subscribing to up to 40 percent of the courses through online-only mode.

Kansal said that they would be able to study through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) under the SWAYAM platform.

“This system will do away with the disadvantages of geography being faced by far-flung colleges or newly-established institutions. The policy also provides for Academic Bank of Credits which will allow a student to study different courses online from colleges located anywhere in India. The credits thus earned will be stored in an academic credit account in a college of choice of the student and will also reflect in his or her final marks sheet. In this regard, institutions will have to encourage students to open Digilocker accounts to store these credits,” he said.

Kansal said that the redesigned curriculum under the NEP would also enable multiple entries and exit points in courses and students would be allowed to complete the four-year UG course in a maximum period of seven years.

Speaking on skill education and training, he said that the J&K government was also providing students with an optional and voluntary skill curriculum in addition to the four-year undergraduate programmes.

“The curriculum will have (12+18) credit format, which will entail 12 academic and 18 practical course credits. Upon successful completion, the student will be provided an appropriate skill certificate by the National Skills Development Council (NSDC), thereby providing an extra edge in employment opportunities for him,” Kansal said.

He urged the colleges to identify suitable skill courses to be provided to students and collaborate with local industries for practical work and for tying up with NSDC for these provisions.

Kansal elucidated the Mentor, Hub, and Spoke Model for fostering research and innovation in J&K.

He said that under this model, universities would provide mentorship in their respective fields of expertise while bigger colleges would serve as a hub.

“The ‘hubs’ will provide support by lending their workshops, labs, and faculty. Other colleges will be designated as ‘spokes’, the students of which will be able to use resources from their respective ‘mentor’ and ‘hub’ institutes,” Kansal said.

Highlighting the need for continuous feedback for the betterment of the education system, he said that a three-step feedback system had been formulated by the government.

“Feedback from students about the quality of learning, feedback from teachers and students about infrastructure and facilities and quarterly evaluation of faculty members by Principals - all of this will be part of the feedback system,” Kansal said. “In a couple of weeks, we will also launch ‘Feedback Portal’, wherein all three feedback systems will be live.”

He assured all support for higher education, fellowships, and presenting research papers abroad.

Kansal also addressed the issues related to promotions and transfers of teaching staff.

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