Open Learning

IGNOU Delhi 1 Study Centre at Jamia Millia Islamia: Plans to improve before expanding

Jamia Millia Islamia, an institution originally established
at Aligarh in United Provinces, India in 1920 became a Central University by an
act of the Indian Parliament in 1988. In Urdu language, Jamia means
‘University’, and Millia means ‘National’. The Department of Teacher Training
and Non-Formal Education was established as a Teacher Training Institute in
1938 under the inspiring leadership of Dr. Zakir Husain in response to the need
to prepare teachers for the Basic Education Scheme launched by Mahatma Gandhi
in 1937. This Teacher Training Institute was perhaps the first of its kind in
the country to have started training of teachers for basic schools which were
offering crafts centered indigenous education to children. The T.T.I. gradually
expanded its activities and got developed into Teachers’ College. In the
process of reorganizing the Teacher’s College in 1980, three departments were
formed viz. Department of Teacher Training and Non Formal Education, Department
of Foundations of Education and Department of Fine Arts & Art Education.

Presently IGNOU Delhi 1 Regional Centre is running its study
centre at Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) in the Education Department under the
guidance of Dr. (Ms.) Talat Aziz. She has a teaching experience of more than 35
years. The study centre offers 5 programmes which include PGDAE, PGDDE, M.A.
CIG, B.Ed. and M.A. Education. The study centre has a good strength of teaching
faculty which is not just qualified but also experienced in all courses. The
centre conducts regular counseling sessions and workshops and also gives
research assistance in the dissertation works. According to Dr. Aziz, as the
counseling is not compulsory, therefore, very few learners attend the theory
classes but workshops are attended by the learners with extreme enthusiasm. She
said that the study centre provides with all the inputs to facilitate the best
learning experience. These inputs, as she said, are primarily required by the
teachers in a school for teaching in a class, managing and handling other
school activities. It is mostly in a workshop mode where the learners work
together to produce subject materials.

Dr. Aziz being an educationist strongly feels that the study
material is in a self-instructional mode which is the best part. The quality is
unmatchable and is best available to the learners. But she says some learners
face some problems going through the study materials in Hindi medium. These learners,
she said hold the opinion that the language understandability is too difficult
to comprehend. Speaking on the basic facilities at the study centre, Dr. Aziz
said that the centre does not have any separate library for IGNOU but if
learners wish to avail any assistance then study centre permits them to consult
the university library at Jamia Millia Islamia.

The study centre is known for conducting regular and
knowledge enriching workshop for the learners during the vacations. In
workshops the learners are very enthusiastic and it also helps them to work and
gain practical knowledge. Dr. Aziz informed that at the workshop the learners
exhibit their lesson plans or teaching aids, test papers which they formulate
during these workshops. The study centre also calls experts either from IGNOU
or from Jamia Millia Islamia to interact with the learners.

Speaking on future plans, Dr. Aziz said that “we do not wish
to increase courses at the centre but would rather like to consolidate the
existing ones. We would mainly like to focus on quality rather than quantity
for receiving better results from our learners.”  

by Ezra John

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