Panel 3: Technology enabled Campus (HE 2010)

Brig (Dr) R S Grewal, Chitkara University, talked about the state of the art required in campus today. With students driving the transition to new devices, applications and content in an ubiquitous, the central problem, he felt, was that around control and information security. The entertainment industry has its own impact with students connected with devices like iPODs, leveraging the campus network for internet connectivity and downloads. The Campus network needs therefore to be flexible enough to keep on changing. Students need to be involved in knowledge construction and in assessing their own learning. But the human perspective is equally important. Teachers may not be as tech savvy as the students. And students need to be motivated as well to become more responsible for their own learning.

One observation I am starting to make is that there is already a big divide between top notch institutions such as DU and IITs, and the next rung institutions.

Dr. Rajiv Shorey, computer scientist, President, NIIT University, shared a not too distant futuristic look at the classroom. First of all, the technology enablement will come from braodband connectivity, borderless networks, pervasive computing, sensor networks, community outreach and connected communities. We need to make our campuses green through minimizing the carbon footprint, green computing and green communications. The classroom is now fully digital with bi-directional communications, maybe integrate multiple multi-location experts teaching the same classroom. He played a video from MS Research Labs that looked frightening similar the Wesch video, but with a smattering of MS tools (of course!). He anticipates thousands of startups in this space.

Prof. Sanjay Jasola, Dean School of Information and Communication Technology, Gautam Buddha University, talked of Web 2.0 tools for learning. They are using Moodle, Learning Activity Management System, Brihaspati, DimDim/WiZIQ, blogs etc. He showed a slew of examples of how easy it is to get tools and content on the web or to create your own.

Dr P K Chaturvedi, Dean, Faculty of Engineering, Skyline Institute referred to the low employability mentioned earlier in the day. He talks about increased mobility of students in terms of getting access to equipment, content and even equivalent certifications.

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