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India News : July 2009

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government in favour of scrapping Class X Board exams

In a path-breaking step to reform the school education system, Union Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal has come up with a plan to scrap the class X examination system. The minister opined that the examination-based system causes trauma to both the parents and the students. He also felt that the time had come to restructure the system and make it less strssful for the students.

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Sibal said that since the student continued in the same school even after Class 10, board exams were not required. However, Sibal said that a final decision in this regard would be taken only after consultations with the state education boards and schools.

DU partners with 5 companies for Industry oriented course

After the past short-term collaboration for professional courses with Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), Delhi University's Campus of Open Learning (COL) has signed separate MoUs with five companies to start new professional and industry-oriented courses. The five MoUs have been signed with Centum Learning for a course in telecom sales and service, HCL Infosystems for a course in IT and web designing, Bird Academy for courses in travel and tourism, Masscomedia for mass communication and RK Films for radio jockeying and broadcasting.  The initiative was taken to 'fill the skill gap' between college education and industry needs.

Easy admissions with Disable friendly software at DU

To make admission process a lot more student-friendly for the differently-abled candidates, Delhi University has introduced JAWS computer software for the benefit of visually challenged applicants. JAWS is a software programme designed to work with a speech synthesiser, converting an ordinary computer into a talking computer. JAWS is being used at DU so that students could hear the vast variety of courses they can pursue at DU. The University is offering more than 1,500 seats for such students this year. However, out of 1,200 seats available in 2008, only 356 had been taken up.

Audio Management lessons aid e-Learning for Visually Challenged

It is now possible for the visually challenged persons to better their personality, learn the power of positive thinking and also get management lessons. An Ahmedabad-based IT firm Third Generation Resources Ltd has decided to mentor lakhs of visually impaired people across the globe, through voice-based Internet learning. Management expert and motivational speaker Dr Shailesh Thaker, the promoter of Third Generation, on his website, has started a weekly column 'Monday Wisdom' that delivers inspirational stories and lessons in leading a better life. For the visually challenged, the lessons have been especially converted into audio form. Third Generation has devoted a full-fledged team that works on this initiative.

500 IGNOU community colleges to Operationalise

The Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) is planning to start 500 community colleges, which aims at skill based education for under privileged, by 2011. IGNOU vice chancellor Professor V.N.Rajasekharan Pillai said that IGNOU had so far received 890 applications, of which 100 have been selected. Inaugurating Royal community college dealing in hotel management run by Thanchankary Foundation, he said IGNOU intends to start one community college in every panchayath in the long term. Community colleges will empower the local population with skills needed for the industry that has potential in the particular region. IGNOU provides the framework, guidelines and training facilities for starting the college. The corporates or other oprganisations will have to bring in the necessary funds, said Pillai. He added that Tamil Nadu Open University has agreed to admit students with associate degrees. IGNOU has received around 20 applications community colleges from Kerala.

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