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To improve teaching abilities of teachers in engineering colleges, AICTE is ready to set up AICTE Training and Learning (ATAL) academies in 11 more States.

AICTE Chairman Anil D Sahasrabudhe said the council had set up four academies on its own, and 11 States, including Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, came forward to have them. The council would set up them if the respective State governments provided infrastructure. A readymade building could be provided or if half or one acre of land was given the council would construct buildings, he told reporters on the sidelines of GITAM (deemed to be) University Convocation here on Saturday

The four academies were started by AICTE at Jaipur, Baroda, Thiruvananthapuram and Guwahati. The idea is to improve the knowledge of teachers who had started their career long time back so that they can, in turn, teach students.

The programmes focus on 10 areas like artificial intelligence, deep learning, machine learning, robotics, 3D printing, blockchain technology, augmented reality and virtual reality.

Changes introduced

So far 100 programmes were conducted with each one attended by 50 to 100 teachers and the target was to hold 200 during the year, Prof. Sahasrabudhe said. In the coming year 500 programmes will be organised.

He said keeping the New Education Policy in view, the AICTE had made changes in the curriculum in 2017-18 and brought down focus on classroom lecturing. With the inclusion of more and more syllabus there was pressure on students and to reduce it the credits were lowered from 200 plus to 160. It also allowed students to choose electives of his discipline as well as other disciplines. Multi- disciplinary approach had also been introduced.

Students should also take up problem-solving projects like finding a solution to the farm waste burning by farmers causing pollution in Delhi or going to villages and finding solutions to problems in water scarcity, hygiene or healthcare there, Prof. Sahasrabudhe suggested.

Examinations reforms were also introduced to move away from by rote learning. While 30 % questions still were memory-based the remaining would focus on whether the student understood the concepts, synthesise them or application skills. As a part of curriculum revision, students would also spend six months in industry either at a stretch or in a staggered manner.

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