After gaining the top rank among all the open universities in the country for the Under Graduate sciences courses, the Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Open University (BRAOU) is now contemplating a new initiative of webcasting its courses as a part of its mandate – reach the unreached.
The BRAOU Vice-Chancellor P. Prakash said that initially the courses will be put on the website for students to catch up at their convenience. Later, lectures on important lessons by prominent teachers will be available for webcast. “The idea is to use the technology to the hilt and reach the maximum,” he said during an interaction with The Hindu Education Plus .
The science programmes are a huge hit given the quality of teachers and the lab facilities. In fact, students have to come to the BRAOU campus in Hyderabad for practicals. The quality curriculum has in fact attracted lot of other open universities in the country to adopt the syllabus of BRAOU.
The BRAOU perhaps is the only university in the country to offer its UG programmes in English, Telugu and Urdu mediums. With nearly two lakh students on its rolls, the university is constantly upgrading its curriculum and introducing programmes tailor-made for candidates planning to enhance their knowledge and those who have missed out on higher education for various reasons.
Some of the courses it plans to introduce are Certificate Programmes in Practical Accounting; Micro Finance and in Anchoring, Dubbing and Voice over apart from PG Diploma programmes in Child Psychology; Museology; Silk Technology and Fresh Water Pearl Culture Technology. Some courses introduced in association with the industry like Diploma in Waste Disposal in Hospitals are getting popular.
The two-year course in Mass Communication is ready and will be open from this June. “We plan to offer lot of niche courses in association with the industry and engineering colleges,” the Vice- Chancellor says. He also has plans to offer Telugu courses to the Telugus residing outside the State. “Despite the growth and spread we never compromise on quality.”
Prof. Prakash, who carries lot of administrative experience by the virtue of working in the University Grants Commission (UGC) for a long time and also has a national perspective of education, says that it is time all the open universities form an “Intra-University” consortium for sharing the resources. The BRAOU can take the lead being the first Open University in the country with excellent infrastructure and dynamic academic courses.
He feels though the Distance Education Council (DEC) provides them few funds the UGC should also extend financial assistance. “We play a key role in increasing the Government's ambitious plans of increasing the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in the country.”
R. Ravikanth Reddy