Registration and orientation program for new UG entrants was conducted through online mode this year with the help of the IIT-Bombay’s official channel.(HT File)
Registration and orientation program for new UG entrants was conducted through online mode this year with the help of the IIT-Bombay’s official channel.(HT File)

IITs welcome new BTech batch virtually this year

With regular classes already having shifted online during the lockdown, most IITs have initiated surveys among the new batches to find out if all students are equipped with laptops and adequate internet to attend online lectures
UPDATED ON NOV 25, 2020 01:04 AM IST

Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) welcomed first-year students registered for Bachelor of technology (BTech) virtually this year.

The new academic year for BTech students at IIT commenced virtually on November 11.“Registration and orientation program for new UG entrants was conducted through [the] online mode this year with the help of the IIT-Bombay’s official channel,” said a spokesperson for the institute. Admissions to most professional UG courses remains delayed across the country.

At IIT Madras, 938 BTech, 175 dual degree and 52 Masters students have been admitted for the 2020-21 academic year. The new batch started operating virtually on November 16. “We are starting the new academic year in a trimester pattern, instead of the usual two semesters annually. All classes will be held online and relevant information will be shared through the institute’s student email system,” said a spokesperson for IIT Madras. IIT Mandi’s new batch started from November 23, with a week long student induction program. Regular online classes for course work will commence from December 1.

With regular classes already having shifted online during the lockdown, most IITs have initiated surveys among the new batches to find out if all students are equipped with laptops and adequate internet to attend online lectures. IIT Hyderabad has enabled a bank loan system for students who need to buy laptops by which the institute will pay the interest on the loan taken by the student.

Professor Chitralekha Mahanta, dean academic affairs, IIT-Guwahati, said the institute is exploring options to see how it can support students from low income groups for whom remote learning may be a challenge. “On a case to case basis, needy students are being brought back to campus to facilitate them with the requisite environment for online learning,” said Mahanta.

While working on facilitating virtual classes, IITs are also planning phased returns to campus. “Decisions on re-commencing physical in-person classes will be taken after evaluating the situation in Tamil Nadu and other states as well as in accordance with the central government,” said a spokesperson for IIT Madras. Professor Shantanu Roy, dean (academic) of IIT Delhi, said the institutes are planning phased openings and at present, only PhD students are returning to campus. At IIT Bombay, several Covid-19 task force committees have been formed and a sub-committee is currently working on rebooting the campus once the lockdown has been lifted.

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