GS Academic Affairs UG: Manifesto Review
The Institute General Body Meets (GBMs) are conducted twice every year with the intent to provide all students a convenient mechanism to provide feedback and address concern to the student representatives responsible for various amenities on campus.
The UG Academic Affairs 2015-16 GBM is scheduled from 8:15 PM on 29th October in LT (PCSA).
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Chief Editors: Mihir Kulkarni, Niranjan Thakurdesai
Mail to: insight [at] iitb.ac.in
Events in red are those that haven’t been started or there has been no satisfactory development in this regard.
Events in orange are those that have been initiated but not completed, or there have been some developments in this regard.
Events in green are those that have been completed as described in the manifesto, or have seen satisfactory developments.
- Propose review of 1st year curriculum ensuring equal academic load in the first 2 semesters
- Propose an Inter IIT Semester Exchange programme with easy credit transfers
- Propose an official week long break in the academic schedule during Diwali week
- Facilitate overhaul of TA selection procedure with interviews as a selection criterion & assistance from acad. council to faculty. Make provisions for TA feedback within first few weeks of tutorial
- Initiate FacAd student lunches as ice breaking sessions; Propose a FacAd feedback from students in coordination with the department councils
- Propose to allow clearance of FR and DX grades in winters and summers through instructor approved CDEEP resources and regular examinations
- Organise an orientation at start of 2nd year for various academic programmes (Semester exchange, URA, UROP) available for students. Prepare a Sophie booklet for the same
- Launch Academic Awareness Drive in collaboration with IIT-BBC to spread the message
- Publicize and expand CourseRank to include minor review and overview of the course curriculum
- Prepare an exhaustive list of equivalent courses across departments in coordination with the department councils and also a 1 stop online guide for registration rules & FAQs
- Initiate GSAA Hotline, especially at time of registration to resolve queries and grievances
- Ensure regular academic council report on matters discussed in Senate & initiatives of the council
The academic council has been able to push through some major reforms including review of 1st year curriculum as well as the Inter IIT Sem Exchange programme. Insight has covered the ongoing reforms in the overall academic scene on a much broader scale in its print issue 18.1. However, on the FacAd front, progress remains to be seen in terms of easier access of students to the FacAds and an effort by the departments to do the same. A much talked about point, the Diwali break in the academic schedule, has been incorporated to avoid having end-semester exams in the Diwali week.
- Will have an option for a concise course feedback form in addition to the current version
- Propose a 30 minute break after 5 PM before the next slot to allow students to have snacks
- Will ensure Lab slots and divisions are communicated at time of registration to prevent confusion over minors. Also avoid slot clashes by having meetings with the DGSecs beforehand
- Formalise process to opt for minors in 5th year & mention instructors during pre-registration; Push for flexibility of courses in popular minors
- Propose for a uniform honour code and URA policy in the institute
Carrying forward the work being done on compiling content related to academics, the current council has made efforts to do the same. A yet-to-be-made academic council report proposed in the manifesto of the GSAA will help in greater transparency and accountability of the functioning of the council.
ACADEMIC POLICY REFORMS
- Propose an ‘Online Course Drop’ system with online FacAd approvals to reduce paperwork
- Enable viewing of slot wise running courses and grading statistics on Running Courses interface;
- Propose setting up of a portal for External Registration through ASC
- Propose online clearance for graduating students and e-payment of library fine & transcript fees
- Ensure name of instructor in charge & necessary info are available at time of pre-registration
An in-principle approval has been given to the 30 minute break post 5 PM, and is expected to be incorporated from the next semester onwards. At the start of the semester, a uniform honor code was implemented in the institute. However, the Undergraduate Research Award(URA) Policy is still not in place, and questions remain if it can be streamlined.
STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES
- Continue conducting help sessions for 1st year students especially in Hindi on a regular basis
- Ensure provisions for regular feedback on classes & improve upon scheduling and topics covered
- Assign TAs for each course in Tutorial Service Centre (TSC); Ensure continuation of virtual classrooms on Piazza (an online forum) for discussion & doubt solving. Upload relevant online course material from other universities
- Collaborate with DAMP team to arrange help sessions for sophomore courses
- Will conduct personality development classes, basic computer classes, counselling and stress relief workshops on a regular basis
- Extend ITSP to take up research in their project. Provide support through mentors and present completed reports in R&D Expo along with the projects
- Collaborate with ISPA Expo for an ITSP exhibition and SAM as was the case this year
- Attempt to include ongoing projects under ISPA; Ensure room retention and certificates, along with student recognition through the program
- Reinitiate Enthuse: A series of informal talks and sessions to expose students to research in their first year and stress their relevance
- Build on previous council’s work in creating a database of research facilities & running projects
- Collaborate with PT Cell in bringing Industrial Learning Projects (ILP)
Student Support Services has been conducting regular sessions for freshmen and they have received a positive response from the students. However, proposed sessions for sophomores have not been conducted, a major problem being the variety of courses across departments in the second year.
PROMOTION OF UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH
- Conduct series of interactive talks on importance of academics ahead and its relevance in future for 1st year students
- Conduct more sessions on apping, both formal and informal and push for department wise sessions.
- Expand the membership of the apping Facebook group and disseminate information through it
- Create an extensive online repository on various placement options, their selection procedures etc.
- Ensure collaboration between the 3 clubs: Consult, Analytics and Finance and float projects for the same, both from professors and enthusiastic alumni
- Organize Non-Technical Summer School that would include short courses on web development, finance, marketing, analytics, consultancy and foreign languages
An ITSP exhibition was organised during SARC’s Student Alumni Meet this semester. ISPA(Institute Summer Project Allocation), which was renamed as SURP this year, saw a much better response from both students and professors according to the academic council. However, still not all departments are covered under SURP, partly because of the professors’ reluctance to give out projects.
- Act as a mediator between Department councils and Central Library to expand e-book collection
- Ensure timely notice to concerned authorities on infrastructural issues and biometric problems
- Push for setting up of air-conditioned study rooms in all hostels
- Initiate software updates in department computer labs and lab equipment across departments
A number of sessions on career options have been organised, as was done in the previous years. The three clubs are making constant efforts in providing students exposure in the relevant fields.
The approval for air conditioned labs has been given. It is upto the hostels to setup an AC Room in their premises. Upgradation of equipment is upto the HoDs of respective department, and the academic council has brought it to the notice of the concerned people, as the GSAA mentions in the interview.
- Collaborate with STAB in setting up a single information centre on all technical activities
- Promote technical entrepreneurship in coordination with STAB, SARC, e-cell and the SINE
- Ensure a relaxation in policies of NOC for teams participating in technical competitions abroad
- Push for easy availability of IDC facilities for fabrication and design for all students
2nd YEAR MSc
- Introduce research awards for MSc students on lines of URA
- Push for a separate MSc representative in the academic council
- Conduct internship readiness sessions for first year MSc students in collaboration with PT Cell
- Propose a review of curriculum for MSc programs; Allow flexibility by providing options for more electives
- Push for formation of Cabinet for Social Activities (CSA) comprising representatives from social bodies in the institute and ensuring its smooth functioning