PGDIT- Post Graduate Diploma in Information Technology
Over the years IIT Kharagpur has retained its vitality and has always been in the frontier of Research, Development and Education and in that process has produced many firsts. For example, in the recent past in the area of information technology it had produced the first batch of BTechs in Computer Science & Engineering in India and was the first to implement a large state of the art ATM network in India. The Institute has also pioneered another new concept of combined mode education in the area of Information Technology, and the first programme, namely, Postgraduate Diploma in Information Technology (PGDIT), was started at its two extension campuses at Kolkata and Bhubaneswar and also at its main campus in Kharagpur in July, 1999. The first batch of 83 students was awarded the Postgraduate Diploma in Information Technology by the Institute in the convocation of 2000.
The need for well trained IT professionals have been stressed repeatedly in various fora and constitute an important part of the recommendations of the IT task force set up by the Government of India. The small number of BTechs and MTechs produced in the related areas by the premier institutes are not enough to meet this requirement. Realizing that quality education in IT is scarcely available in the country in spite of mushrooming growth of this discipline in institutions which sprouted all over the country, primarily due to acute shortage of quality teachers, IIT Kharagpur has initiated this programme by effectively pooling all its resources in this area. The principal objective of the endeavour is to provide quality and appropriate postgrtaduate education and training to the competent students having a BTech, BE or MSc degree to migrate into the area of IT by giving them the opportunity to have the IIT standard of education. The logistics of the programme has been chalked out in a way to remain uncompromising about the IIT quality notwithstanding the distance factor by taking into account the dynamics of distance education learning systems. PGDIT is a regular self-financed academic programme of the Institute co-ordinated by the School of Information Technology. The core faculty for the course is drawn from allied departments, centres, and schools of the Institute like the School of Information Technology, Departments of Computer Science & Engineering, Electronics and Electrical Communication Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Industrial Engineering & Management, Mechanical Engineering, Vinod Gupta School of Management and Computer & Informatics Centre. The list of faculty members participating in the PGDIT programme is given in Section 4.
Mode of Instruction and Lesson Delivery: Instruction is provided in a combination of distance and contact modes. While the contact mode instruction consists of normal class works (detailed in the next paragraph), the distance mode instruction is provided through Video CDs uniquely designed for this purpose by the IIT faculty utilizing the excellent facilities available in the Centre of Education Technology of the Institute. Theory classes are conducted in well-tested Small Group Collaborative Learning model with about 8 to 10 students in a classroom. They sit in conference mode and watch the video instruction pausing every 5 to 10 minutes and discussing the problems, if any, for about 3-5 minutes. Well-trained Programme Facilitators especially appointed for this purpose help the students along in this group discussion. In this model, the students learn a lot from each other inculcating the habit of self-learning which would immensely benefit them life long.
For providing instruction in contact mode every weekend in each subject faculty members from Kharagpur visit every center to discuss with the students the lecture materials covered up to that week. Unresolved questions, if any, are clarified and supplementary materials are introduced by the teacher during this direct contact.
Each week the students thus go through a minimum of 4 hours of video-discussion session and nearly 2 hours of direct teacher-contact for each subject for covering the similar amount of material which is normally covered in 3 to 4 hours for a regular BTech / MTech course of the Institute. Moreover, since the video CDs are always available at the centers, the students can rerun these at their own pace during the free time to make up for any deficiency.
Sophisticated videoconferencing facility has been installed in the two remote Centres, Kolkata and Bhubaneswar, for conducting interactive sessions with the students whenever necessary in the predesignated slots. The students also extensively interact with the teachers through e-mail.
Every subject is coordinated by one designated faculty member, who keeps track of the progress, parity and the status of activity of the corresponding subject in all the three centres and take corrective action as necessary.
Laboratory Classes: Well-equipped laboratories with adequate number of top-of-line PCs and servers have been set-up and maintained at all the centres. All the machines in each centre are connected in a local area network with an internet connectivity having adequate bandwidth. For laboratory exercises, weekly assignments are given to the students, which are regularly monitored by the programme facilitators and guided and checked by faculty members during the weekly contacts throughout the semester.
An Electronic Learning Management System has been developed to facilitate the management of the laboratory classes. The system is extremely useful in distributing assignments, monitoring students’ progress and providing them with rapid feedback even from a distance.
Project: A one-semester industry relevant project is assigned to each student on different problems. The project is continually supervised by the faculty and evaluated at the end of the semester. All the projects have to be demonstrated and presented to a team of faculty members at the end of the semester for final evaluation.
Library: Adequate library facilities are available in each of the three centres.
Duration: The PGDIT programme consists of two semesters, the first semester generally starting from the last week of July and finishing in November-end. The second semester starts in the January-beginning and ends in the first half of May. The academic calendar of the Institute is strictly followed. The curricula consist of four Theory subjects in each semester and two Laboratories in the first (Autumn) semester and one Laboratory and a Project in the second (Spring) semester.
Examination and Evaluation: Like any other PG programme of the Institute, the PGDIT programme has one mid-semester and one end-semester examinations besides class tests and submission of assignments. The evaluation in the laboratory subject is based on the performance in weekly assignments and several tests conducted during and at the end of the semester. The grading system followed is the same as that of other postgraduate programmes in the Institute. The diploma is conferred to the students in the annual convocation.
Location: The course will be available on full-time basis at three locations:
Calcutta Extension Centre, Salt Lake City, Kolkata
Bhubaneswar Extension Centre, Samantapuri (near Swosti Plaza Hotel), Bhubaneswar, Orissa
Institute campus, Kharagpur
Allocation of a Centre to a successful candidate will be finalized during the counseling session primarily on the basis of choice-cum-performance at the admission test. The students of this programme, including those in Kharagpur, will be treated as non-residential and they would have to arrange for their own board and lodging according to their own convenience. However, the staff at each Centre would extend their help in finding suitable accommodation.
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