TLC at IITH has the following objectives
Considering that today's generation has good access to all kind of information, classroom teaching needs to be reinvented. Given this, content in the course and the method used to deliver the content becomes very important. Today's educators need to evolve content continuously at a fast pace and use technology to the fullest.
Most of the teaching material is currently available online. This can be in the form of video lectures, e-books, PPT slides and tutorial notes.
Instead of wasting valuable time in recreating content from the above sources, teachers should focus on directing students to relevant content and spend more time on problem solving through discussions. Smartphones and tablets can be intelligently used for sharing content with students. Such teaching/learning methods have been successfully implemented in many courses at IIT Hyderabad.
A singular advantage of such an approach is a personalised teaching program, where varied content is available for different groups of students, depending upon their learning curves. Such an approach has been extremely successful in computer programming courses at IIT Hyderabad and can be extended to theory courses as well. Students are likely to appreciate such an approach since the non-uniformity allows them to learn at their own pace without worrying about the competition.
TLC at IIT would provide training programs for various teaching methodologies based on the above template.
In most colleges across India, students are evaluated only two or three times during the semester. Several studies have shown that the teaching/learning process is effective only if students are evaluated continuously.
In the fractal academic system at IIT Hyderabad, students are evaluated continuously through tests every week. Supplementary theory and computer assignments are also given for practice. Such an evaluation process allows the students to think independently.
At the TLC at IIT Hyderabad, teachers will be trained to develop efficient student evaluation techniques and revise them periodically.
Organizing content, continuous assessment, etc. require a lot of man hours that may leave little time for research. As a result, teachers need to have enough support staff to assist them in these activities.
At IIT Hyderabad, senior undergraduate students have been successfully used as teaching assistants for courses taken by their juniors. Contrary to popular perception, UG students can be extremely ethical and hardworking, and most junior students at IIT Hyderabad find it easier to learn many subjects from their seniors. This also helps the senior students gain more subject knowledge, besides improving their oratorial and presentation skills.
Such a teaching assistance program is unique to IIT Hyderabad. The TLC at IIT Hyderabad will aim to establish such a system at all colleges throughout the country. For this purpose, along with teachers, some bright students from respective colleges will also be trained.
Lecturing is a traditional means of delivering content. With the advent of newer teaching methodologies, teaching can be made more effective. Some of the methods include flip teaching, distributed teaching, discussions, and so on. TLC at IIT would provide training programs for various teaching methodologies, also carry out research on effectivity of methods for delivering particular kind of content in the Indian students. Online tools also should be made use of. However, with so many options, teachers get confused. TLC will help identify the right resource and method.
Teaching process in India is an open loop system, with no scope for student feedback. Barring the IITs, very few institutions across India have any mechanism for student feedback. Student feedback plays a very important role in assessing the ability of a teacher to successfully convey her ideas to the student. Student feedback also enables the teacher to assess her shortcomings and improve upon them.
It is extremely important that the feedback process be designed properly. The TLC at IIT Hyderabad will introduce teachers to various student feedback mechanisms and identify the key issues with pedagogy by sifting through the feedback data.
It is extremely important that a teacher be involved in research. This boosts the teacher's confidence, besides enabling her to tailor the course curriculum according to the needs of the industry.
Theoretical/applied research is usually considered to be an activity unrelated to teaching. This is not true. It is possible to divide a big research problem into smaller ones that can be given to students at various levels. The confidence of students will phenomenally increase if they are able to solve problems that are typically handled by faculty or senior research scholars.
The ability to involve students in research activity is an art. IIT Hyderabad is one of the few institution in fostering undergraduate research. Very few institutions worldwide can claim such capabilities.
Teachers will be shown how to incorporate research activity into the teaching curriculum at the TLC at IIT Hyderabad. This could lead to significant research activity throughout the country and increase the research output.
All of these address the following objectives of PMMMNMTT