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Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan launches ‘Swayam Plus’ platform to be operated by IIT Madras


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Chennai: Union Minister of Education and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Dharmendra Pradhan launched the ‘SWAYAM Plus’ platform that will offer courses developed collaboratively with the industry at an event in Delhi on Tuesday.

These employability and professional development‐focused programs have been developed with leading industry players such as L&T, Microsoft, CISCO etc. to bring to its learners, a release from IIT-Madras said.

The Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) will be operating the ‘SWAYAM Plus’ Platform. IIT Madras was among the founder institutions of Swayam-NPTEL, the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) platform providing educational opportunities for a vast number of learners.

A popular e-learning platform, SWAYAM has the largest enrolment base today, with the total enrolment increasing from 31 lakh in 2017 to more than 72 lakh by end of 2023.

The establishment of SWAYAM Plus would enhance employability of both college students and lifelong learners. The industry-academia partnership would combine the academic rigour of SWAYAM’s educational platform with the real-world expertise and relevance offered by industry partners. SWAYAM Plus platform will offer programs in sectors like Manufacturing, Energy, Computer Science and Engineering/IT/ITES, Management Studies, Healthcare, Hospitality and Tourism besides Indian Knowledge Systems, among many others.

Launching the ‘SWAYAM Plus’ portal, Mr Dharmendra Pradhan said, “The National Education Policy (NEP) is on roll and for the first time, reputed industrial houses will be coming with their own academy, partnering with the UGC, esteemed education departments, and prestigious institutes like IIT Madras. All these courses will be accredited.”

Elaborating he said, “SWAYAM Plus offers employability, entrepreneurial mode, and job-centric courses, emphasizing practical, hands-on learning. Our goal is to make education industry-fit, providing learners with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in the professional world.”

“Higher education is no longer limited to the traditional student. It is now accessible to the working population as well. The NEP 2020’s provision for multiple entry and exit points allows individuals to pursue education at their own pace. This concept is embodied in SWAYAM Plus, a vehicle that enables working professionals to balance their work and studies by offering a plethora of online courses. With SWAYAM Plus, we are empowering individuals to upskill and reskill, enhancing their career prospects and contributing to India’s knowledge economy”, he added.

Reskilling and upskilling initiatives play a pivotal role in addressing skill gaps, ensuring employability, and fostering a culture of lifelong learning. Through collaborative efforts between academia, industry, and the government, the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 endeavours to create a workforce that is well-prepared for the challenges of the modern world and can thrive in diverse sectors, driving innovation, entrepreneurship, and inclusive development.

Speaking during the launch event, Prof. V. Kamakoti, Director, IIT Madras, said, “There is an exponentially growing demand for trained manpower in core areas spanning across not restricted to health care, logistics, technology, energy, infrastructure and manufacturing. With rapid changes in these areas, there is a need to augment certain recent topics for fresh students and upskilling for the already employed. Swayam Plus will be a single window solution serving the above National cause.”

The exposure through these courses would equip students with not only theoretical knowledge but also the skills, practices and latest trends demanded by the job market. It would bridge the gap between academia and industry, making college graduates more job-ready and competitive.

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