December 2005

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Portal provides business education
eBay, a web-auction enterprise, is trying to make business education widely accessible to the would-be entrepreneurs. eBay Academy offers a business education. One learns about setting up a business, marketing and finance all, for absolutely no cost. Educate people to run their own businesses with the help of eBay, that explains eBay Academy. The course material is focused on the web-enabled startup. If one has internet access and some value to offer the market, he can make money. The eBay education offers instructors, self-help instruction manuals and entrepreneurial kits.

NIIT offering knowledge solutions via e-Learning

 Incorporating better human resource practices or motivating the workers, NIIT’s e-Learning business, known as knowledge solutions business, has started offering integrated learning solutions ranging from strategy and design to development, implementation and administration.

The task is to tutor every employee including the topmost manager on the nitty-gritty of customer care, billing and other aspects of telecom operation. Four out of the Forbes’ top 10 companies as well as many Indian giants have sought NIIT’s advice for better performance.

Radio Instruction in Indian states

The Indian state government of Chhattisgarh has expanded an EDC-developed interactive radio instruction initiative (IRI) to reach approximately one million children.

The program ‘English is Fun’ is part of Chhattisgarh and Karnataka radio initiative involving 7 million children in over 80,000 schools. The Chhattisgarh program extends the English curriculum with focus on listening and speaking skills. Students practice skills when they sing songs, play local games, or conduct chain exercises during the 30-minute broadcasts.

School in Indian slum driving students towards ICT
Katha Information Technology and e-Commerce School (KITES) in the Govindpuri slum in New Delhi, is a non-conventional school which exists with a joint initiative undertaken by British telecom major BT and Delhi-based NGO Katha.

The students love to go to school because they like the way they are taught and for the sheer joy of getting to use the computers installed for them. The school offers ICT skills to children from the poorest communities. BT has supplied computers and other equipment to these students.

Microsoft to establish Knowledge Bank in IP
Microsoft Corporation India has signed a 3-year MoU with National Academy of Legal Studies and Research University (NALSAR), Hyderabad, to implement the “Microsoft Intellectual Property Scholar Program” under which it aims to establish a Knowledge Bank in the area of Intellectual Property.

Microsoft will select three “Microsoft Scholars” from the final year batch of the B.A. B.L. (Hons.) program at NALSAR, to undertake fundamental research and author papers on topics related to Intellectual Property (IP) rights to whom research scholarships will be provided. Relevant library and research resources will also be made available to the students along with free software facility.

IITs 3rd best tech schools in world

According to the Times Higher Education Supplement, the Indian Institutes of Technology(IIT) have been declared the third best technology universities in the world for 2005.

The research table shows that technologists regard Imperial College London as the UK’s best university, ahead of Cambridge University and fifth in the world. The overall ranking is also dominated by the US, which appears 26 times in the top 101 institutions in the list.
After Yahoo, now Microsoft in online book-content search movement

Microsoft is planning to join the online book-search movement with a new service called MSN Book Search. The recently formed group called the Open Content Alliance to which Microsoft plans to join, is working to digitise the contents of millions of books and put them on the Internet, with full text accessible to anyone, while respecting the rights of copyright holders. MSN is joining forces with its archrival Yahoo, which announced its support of the project this month.

Portal provides business education
eBay, a web-auction enterprise, is trying to make business education widely accessible to the would-be entrepreneurs. eBay Academy offers a business education. One learns about setting up a business, marketing and finance all, for absolutely no cost. Educate people to run their own businesses with the help of eBay, that explains eBay Academy. The course material is focused on the web-enabled startup. The eBay education offers instructors, self-help instruction manuals and entrepreneurial kits, so that if one has internet access and some value to offer the market, he can make money.

Microsoft to start computer literacy in Indian schools 

Going by its earlier committments, Microsoft is going to take up experimental programme in extending computer literacy to schools that will enable teachers to use three dimensional teaching tools in Indian languages to handle classes and provide necessary clarifications to students.

The pilot scheme of computers in classrooms would cover six states and Microsoft would provide

EDUSAT programme launched in Orissa

Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO) G. Madhavan Nair inaugurated the GRAMSAT studio in the Indian state Orissa at Orissa Remote Sensing Application Centre (ORSAC)’s new building. Four schools at Koraput, a backward district, were connected through the EDUSAT programme, which is being jointly implemented by ISRO and the ORSAC. The programme would be extended to 1,000 schools in the the state this year and 20,000 more schools in three years with financial assistance from the Centre.

In the month of September this year, Edusat, celebrated its first anniversary, harnessing satellite technology to reach students in every corner of the country. This programme is being implemented by half a dozen institutions across India. Kerala has leveraged the telemetry potential of Edusat and linked 45 learning centres, spread across all 14 districts for two-way audio and video interaction, later joined by Lakshadweep Islands which shares Kerala’s state education system. More states are slowly creating their own infrastructure to leverage the enormous reach offered by Edusat.

5,000 computers, besides the (ICT) Literacy Assessment will necessary interactive software. be available by ETS beginning in
January 2006. The ICT Literacy Laptops taking up papers in Assessment is a simulation-based US school testing program that is designed to measure postsecondary An Arizona school has dispensed students’ ability to use digital entirely with textbooks and has technology, communication tools spunked its entire book budget on and networks to solve student laptops. Empire High information problems. The test School used to spend around $500 measures not only knowledge of per head on text books.

Instead, it technology, but the ability to use spent roughly US$800 a pop on critical thinking to define, access, Apple iBooks. Here every class is manage, integrate, evaluate, a little bit different. create and communicate information in a technological Some classes are relying primarily environment. on a service, where you need a password to get to it. Some classes’ Jordanian varsity organizes teachers are using electronic text special course for ICT books as a resource – not as a students primary tool but as a resource and then a lot of our classes are relying Princess Sumaya University for very heavily on simply free material Technology (PSUT) in Jordan is that is available on the Internet. currently organizing a special educational course for its New ICT Literacy students who are majoring in Assessment to arrive Information and Communications Technologies (ICT).

A revised version of Information Approximately 40 students are and Communication Technology participating in the one month course which will highlight updates and trends of TCP/IP-based multimedia network technology. The course will also feature video conferencing sessions, allowing real time interaction with prominent Japanese instructors to discuss related topics, address issues, and answer questions.

e-Vidya to put life in e-Literacy
The Kerala State IT Mission in India will unveil e-Vidya, a life-support system for the Akshaya centres in Malappuram, which have been struggling to keep alive after the e-Literacy drive got exhausted, is in the offing.

It would be a higher version of the first stage of e-Literacy movement. More packages and programmes will be included in this stage.

Cambridge gives ICT course to Indian teachers
Five experts from Cambridge University are to conduct training courses for teachers of the Gujarat Education Board in India in the application of information and communication technology (ICT) in classrooms.

The university will confer diplomas to the 250 master trainers after the course who are going to impart training among other school teachers. Fifty schools of Gujarat will be directly connected to the university for their academic upgradation.

Muslim institutions need to offer distance education
Calicut University Vice-Chancellor has come up with the suggestion that muslim institutions should offer education through distance learning as it is the most economical way to reach out to large segments of poor students and women. The fees collected during the regular courses can be used to subsidise the distance education fees for very poor students and can also facilitate resource sharing and joint action for protection of rights.

School Learning with Television Support in Mexico
The Telesecundaria project, lower secondary school learning with television support, has changed the situation of education in Mexico by opening up communications infrastructure to different forms of education and learning.

Telesecundaria lessons contain twenty minutes of interactive, dynamic and action-oriented learning. They can be watched live on TV or can be recorded on video, depending on availability of machines in schools. In Mexico, the country of scattered communities and vast distances, out of the 150,000 rural and far-flung communities more than 100,000 have less than 100 inhabitants.

e-Admission in Indian schools reduces drop-out mark

The new online admission policy of Delhi Government in India for primary level schools has successfully brought down the dropout rate from 15 per cent to 5 per cent this year leading to 70,000 new admissions, of which 35,000 are girl students who never made to school beyond the fifth standard.

With the introduction of the online admission system the total admission had touched the record figure of 2.10 lakh instead of the routine 1.40-lakh students joining the sixth standard in Delhi Government schools.

Computer education bus at doorstep now Som Datt Foundation, a registered charitable trust working for the under-privileged, has launched a mobile computer education bus, first of its kind in Delhi, that gives the environment of a classroom.

The bus reaches places where computer has not reached to provide a window of opportunities to the underprivileged children through the world of computers and internet. At present 300 under privileged young boys and girls living in the slums of Delhi are the beneficiaries of this project.

UGC to look on higher education websites info

The University Grants Commission (UGC) is framing guidelines to streamline website information furnished by institutions providing higher and professional education.

Often, websites become inexpensive tools to massage fancy details into fly-by-night institutions, and misinform people about faculty, students, infrastructure and affiliations. The rules will apply to both government-funded and private, unaided institutions.

Primary education gaining ground
The expansion of primary education, driven by major policy changes along with higher demand for schooling stemming from economic growth and globalisation is taking hold all across India. India’s southern and western states had always been far ahead in education of the large northern states, which accounted for most of the out-of-school children. Over the past decade, however, many poorly performing states began to make real overall advances — the primary gross enrolment ratio (GERs) in Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, and Madhya Pradesh were well over 90 per cent, although the ratio remained at 74 per cent in Bihar. The southern states, the states on the east and west coasts, the Himalayan states, and the northeastern states except for Assam and Nagaland were either approaching universal primary enrolment or had already achieved it.

Virtual teaching in India getting floor
Top-notch technology and management institutes in India now combine academics and research with IT tools, high-tech gadgets and multimedia networks, to offer high quality education.Some IITs have installed large and interactive white boards, the touch-based display screens that are connected to a computer and a projector. These screens coming in various sizes, are not just clearly visible for every student in the lecture room, they go beyond the chalk and blackboard teaching methodology to create an interactive working, training and learning environment. Another such institute has set up a Language Technologies Research Centre that conducts research in machine translation, speech processing and information extraction.

IBM to teach employees in US

The world’s largest information technology company, IBM has announced that it would reimburse participants in its new transition to teaching programme up to US$15,000 for tuition and stipends. The announcement has come as a concern over the shortage of maths and science faculty in the United States.

During the course and the training, the participants will be able to remain at IBM. The IBM transition to teaching programme will begin as a pilot with as many as 100 United States employees in various geographic areas participating across the country and, if successful, will be expanded significantly.

Infosys to train 100 Chinese students in India

Infosys Technologies Ltd has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Government of China to train 100 students from China at its Global Education Centre in the Indian city, Mysore.
These students are in their fourth year from leading universities in the software engineering field. The internship programme will run from September 2005 to March 2006 and involves a three-month intensive training course on interpersonal and technical skills at the Global Education Centre, and a four-month internship at Infosys’ development centre in Bangalore.

IT access to schools in Hindi belt of India
Around 1,250 schools situated in four of the most backward districts across the Hindi-speaking states of Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh in India will get connected via 12 satellite interactive terminals supported by EduSat by January 2006.

With the successful implementation of this project, the government of India will come one step closer to its objective of universalisation of elementary education. The department of space, ministry of human resource development (MHRD) and Distance Education Council, Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) have jointly agreed to work on the project in collaboration with the school education departments of the respective states.
Source: Times of India

Use of ICT to be strengthened in New Zealand with tertiary grants
Tertiary institutions and communities across New Zealand aiming at building the use of computer and online technology in tertiary education are set to benefit from US$6.7 million in grants for projects. The 15 projects that will be funded by these grants range from workplace e-Learning projects involving polytechnics and industry training organisations, to the development of online professional development resources for people who teach adult literacy and other foundation skills. The government funded e-Learn-ing Collaborative Development Fund (eCDF) supports educators wanting to enhance e-Learning opportunities for students, and is administered by the Tertiary Education Commission.

e-Lessions for science students in Namibia
As part of a pilot project funded by United Nations educational, scientific and cultural organisation (Unesco), the Namibian College of Open Learning (Namcol) has produced a series of electronic lessons that will help students studying physical science. The electronic sessions include demonstrations, info boxes, quizzes and puzzles. Apart from making the answer checking process easy, it also brings advantages like  se of animations to illustrate. The material consists of six physical science lessons and is meant to supplement textbooks and classroom instruction.

e-Campus recruitment drives fast in India
e-Campus recruitment is getting quick acceptance in India now. The pre-interview presentations via video-conferencing and satellite are now added to the general form of online testing. The advantage is better read from ABB example where the total process of recruiting 72 candidates from 23 colleges and over 500 students by power and automation major ABB India took just five days compared to 90 days in the traditional route of going to each campus.

Cabinet in India nods for ‘Shiksha Kosh’
The Union Cabinet in India has approved the creation of the `Prarambhik Shiksha Kosh’ (PSK) with the money collected from the education cess since the last fiscal. PSK, the non-lapsable fund, will be used to finance elementary education with annual plan allocations and the mid-day meal scheme.

Rural knowledge centers keep growing in Sri Lanka
A total of 80 Nanasalas, the e- Libraries by the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka have become operational by the end of August since the first one in the series came into picture on the first day of the year. The network includes 50 Rural Knowledge Centers in the Deep South Region the are in Commercial Model and 30 e-Libraries in Community Model.

All of these centres are fully equipped with 2-4 Computers and peripherals ranging from printers,fax machines, scanners, web cameras and copiers to provide ICT services in rural & semi-rural  communities. Internet access is provided with high speed broadband connectivity, using satellite (VSAT) technology.

Element K to expand in South Indian city
Element K, United States-based company providing e-Learning solutions, plans to double its headcount in the Indian city Chennai to approximately 400 next year. The centre has developed around 200 courseware on different subjects. Using graphics, animation and flash, audio, video and text, the courseware is made interactive to help students learn without teachers.

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