Guided by its sharp vision of future, the Department of College Education in Rajasthan is gradually transforming the education landscape in the state through various e-Governance initiatives. Kartik Sharma of Elets News Network (ENN) explores how this futuristic approach is creating new opportunities for college students across the state.
Rajasthan has many firsts to its credit, making it one of the most dynamic states when it comes to implementing e-governance initiatives. Underpinning this approach is the state government’s will to use the information and communications technology as a handy tool to improve access to key public services and facilitate streamlining of processes to make service delivery an effortless task.
In keeping with the tradition of innovating for masses, the Department of College Education, Rajasthan, has come up with a number of initiatives – both ICTbased as well as non-ICT programmes – to meet the needs of millions of students across the state and enhance the quality of education.
ICT Initiatives (Implemented)
In order to make the admission process in state-run colleges smooth and efficient, the department launched online admission forms for graduate level classes in 63 government colleges in 2013-14, which was later extended to UG courses in all state government colleges in the academic session 2015- 16. The online application can be accessed through the department’s web portal www. dce.rajasthan.gov.in.
Online Admission Process (OAP) UG-PG The unique features of the Online Admission Process, or OAP, that include data integration with various government bodies and student-specific services, turned out to be highly beneficial in reducing manpower in colleges and facilitating hassle-free service delivery to students in an environmentally sustainable manner.
Higher education web portal has been initiated in compliance of CM Budget announcement where information pertaining to all higher education related departments like college education, engineering, polytechnic and sanskrit education will be available at a single click. Website updation and uploading of information is under process.
Online Application for No Objection Certificate (NOC) to Private Colleges
With an aim to bring private colleges within the ambit of the government’s ICT initiatives, an online No Objection Certificate (NOC) software application was developed to allow submission of applications for all types of TNOC/PNOC to be issued to private colleges for session 2017-18. The Department of Information Technology designed and implemented this project, which is also a part of applications to be developed under the state’s higher education portal.
Rajasthan is among the few pioneering states where impactful public health policies have catapulted the healthcare landscape, making quality healthcare services easily accessible to the common man. Carrying forward this legacy, the Department of College Education has started providing sanitary napkins to girl students in government colleges – a move that will go a long way in improving hygiene among women in the state.
Rashtriya Uchchtar Siksha Abhiyan (RUSA)
A well-developed college infrastructure is imperative for quality education.
The formation of State Higher Education Council (SHEC) to smoothen the receiving, disbursement and monitoring of RUSA grants was a major achievement of the department, underscoring its commitment to enhance quality of education in the state.
As the Department of College Education resolves to take education in Rajasthan to the next level, it has set its eyes on the future to reinforce the state’s leadership in creating a swathe of new opportunities for students by leveraging cutting-edge technology.
Blood Donation Programme
In September 2016, the Blood Donation camp was organized across the state in all Government Colleges. The department received third prize at state level blood collection from volunteer students.
ICT Initiatives (Proposed & submitted to Finance Department & RUSA)
This is an initiative to facilitate students across the state to get online academic support and contents for their curriculum based and to prepare for competitive exams. The programme is initiated under the assurance in the House by the Hon’ble Higher Education Minister in March, 2015. A total 34 colleges have been identified in the first phase, selecting one biggest college from each district headquarters in the state. The proposal is to expand this facility to other colleges as well. The programme in the first phase in final stage, as the installation of equipments in the colleges is under process by the DOIT. Next phase proposals have also been submitted to the Dept. of Finance, GoR and also RUSA, New Delhi.
Virtual Lab facility
Considering the teaching – learning based difficulties belonging to faculty of science, especially the Zoology subject, this Proposals have been submitted to the FD and the RUSA. The proposal is approximately of three Crores.
In keeping with the tradition of innovating for masses, the Department of College Education, Rajasthan, has come up with a number of initiatives – both ICTbased as well as non- ICT programmes.
Strident steps have been initiated to facilitate students across the state to get online academic support and contents to prepare for competitive exams. Initiatives like virtual lab facility, e-Repository and Quick Response System to connect all those needy students who are sincerely interested to enhance knowledge, learn and progress have been proposed and submitted to the Finance Department and RUSA for implementation.
Wi Fi facility in government colleges under CM budget announcement 2016-17 is being initiated in six colleges located at Sikar, Jaipur, Baran, Jhalawar and Dhaulpur.
Online IT based courses through spoken tutorial of IIT Bombay, which is under the scheme of Ministery of Human Resource Development, Government of India. It will be implemented in all government colleges in different phases. This programme is available free of cost to students in online mode.
Other initiatives (Non- ICT)
Reviving Higher Education Academy for Research & Training (HEART)
Higher Education Academy for Research & Training (HEART) is established in the compliance of the National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technology (NMEICT) guidelines. It was established almost a decade before, but for last couple of years it seems to be non-functional.
It is revised and three sensitisation workshops were organized in February 2016 at Dungar College, Bikaner; Meera Girls’ College, Udaipur and RD Girls’ College, Bharatpur. The basic aim is to involve teachers to suggest and act to optimize academic output and make the institutions live. The recommendations of the workshop were taken on record and proposals have been prepared accordingly.
Entrepreneurship & Skill Development Programmes for Students
Efforts have been made to initiate Entrepreneurship & Skill Development Programmes for students to optimize their placement and career oriented opportunities. Establishing Entrepreneurship & Skill Development Cells in the colleges was proposed as preliminary initiative which is approved from Competent authorities. It’s on way to establish therein. Another effort through Wadhwani Foundation is also initiated which is again under process.
With the department training sharp focus on developing next-gen leaders, entrepreneurship and skill development programmes for students are underway in colleges across the state. Alongside, a proposal has been made for establishing ‘Kalpana Swarnim Udaan Kendra’ in Girls Colleges to train students for self defense, skill development and also to act as help centers in their career making.