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500 Free Courses In 10 Languages To Be Launched This Year, Says Irani

The major streams offered in the Open and Distance Learning scheme include humanities, social sciences and general science

To spread education in every nook and corner of the country, the government of India plans to introduce 500 free distance and regular courses in ten different languages.

The information was given by HRD Minister Smriti Irani in the Lok Sabha.

To increase the access of education and expand knowledge throughout the nation, government has come up with online and mobile application techniques, which would be offered free of cost.

The major streams offered in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) include humanities, social sciences and general science.

Replying to questions in the Lok Sabha, the HRD minister said that the government is examining the provisions in partnership with UGC belonging to ODL.

"The regulations for Open Distance Learning need introspection... In conjunction with the University Grants Commission (UGC), we are introspecting," Irani said.

At present, one central university - Indira Gandhi National Open University - and 14 state universities are conducting programs in the ODL field. Whereas, few private institutions and deemed universities also offer such courses.

India's higher education system is the third largest in the world, next to the United States and China. Irani highlighted the efforts put up by government for improving the curriculum of National Institute of Technology (NIT).

Irani stated that the government is discussing with prestigious institutions like Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Stanford University to raise the level of higher education and improve the overall output at engineering colleges.

Answering another question, Irani said the government is also preparing to open Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas (JNVs) in 62 districts, which do not have one, this year.

"JNVs are opened in districts not having the same after land and temporary accommodation are arranged by the state government/union territory administration and subject to availability of resources and sanction of competent authority," she added.


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