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BeInDemand by Udacity aims to upskill 1 lakh engineering graduates by 2017

The Hindu Business Line |  New Delhi, Aug 22 |

Online education company Udacity in collaboration with Venturesity aims to bridge the skills gap in IT industry through innovative learning solutions and targets to upskill 1 lakh engineering students by 2017. In order to bridge the hiring challenge in the IT industry in the country, Udacity has launched it’s #BeInDemand campaign which helps engineers to upskill themselves., it said. “Big data, data science, mobile and cloud computing will drive jobs in the IT industry in the next decade. With our new campaign #BeinDemand we are aiming to upskill 1 Lakh engineering graduates across the country and make them easily employable for the best in the industry,” Vardhan Koshal, Country Head, India at Udacity, said. –  Courtesy

Be In Demand  :  BeInDemand is an initiative by Udacity where we partner with selected engineering colleges in India to upskill outgoing graduates for the most in demand jobs.   –    https://in.udacity.com/college/


IIT BTech students will be allowed entry into PhD to solve faculty crunch

Business Insider | BI India Bureau | Aug 22, 2016 |

IIT council is scheduled to have a meeting next week, in which the HRD ministry will propose a new research scholar scheme to identify 1,000 bright BTech students from premier engineering colleges, like IITs, to be given direct admission into PhD programmes. “BTech passouts from IITs who have job experience and are interested in research should be enrolled in PhD,” a source told TNN. The reason behind this step is the increasing faculty crunch that IITs are facing, despite around 2,000 PhDs coming out of IITs each year. “When it comes to hiring teachers, IITs are very selective. The need is to improve the quality of PhD and attract bright IIT students to undertake research,” a source said. Government is also considering hefty scholarships to students who opt for PhD after engineering. “It will not be big enough to compensate the salary a IIT student gets after BTech but it will probably be among the highest,” one official said. –  Courtesy

CAT 2016: IIM Ahmedabad admission criteria target non-engineers; Arts/Humanities get higher weightage

MBA Universe | 22 August 2016  |

CAT 2016 aspirants from non-engineering back-ground may find it easier to get into IIM Ahmedabad in 2017 as it awards higher weightage to academic diversity.

CAT 2016 aspirants from non-engineering back-ground may find it easier to get into IIM Ahmedabad in 2017 as the admission policy of the top B-school awards higher weightage to the candidates coming with the academic ground of Arts/Humanities; Commerce and Science streams.  Apart from preliminary shortlisting based on weightage to CAT 2016 scores which will be the mandatory shortlisting criterion, IIM Ahmedabad has devised the weightages with a view to improve the academic diversity in its class rooms. After the stage 1 shortlisting the successful CAT 2016 takers shall have to go through the final admission process at IIM Ahmedabad. The final admission round will comprise Academic Writing Test (AWT) and Personal Interview (PI). Both the tests will be conducted on the same day and the admission offers shall be issued based on the scores obtained in CAT 2016, AWT, PI and other key parameters in the month of April, 2017.

Weightage begins from Class 10
IIM Ahmedabad has announced rating score for class 10 marks- 55% and above but below 60% marks will be awarded 1 point weightage. If the marks are 60% and above, weightage of 2 points will be awarded. Maximum weightage of 10 points will be awarded to 90% or above marks in class 10.

Weightage to class 12 marks
If you belong to Science stream in class 12 and have scored below or 55% marks, weightage of 1 point will be awarded and marks between 55 to 60% will be awarded weightage of 2 points. Students from commerce stream will get a weightage of 1 point even if they have scored 50% or less marks, this will increase to 2 points if the score is upto 55%. From 55% to 65% marks in class 12, the weightage points will go upto 3. However maximum weightage of 10 points will be awarded by IIM Ahmedabad, if you have scored 90% or above marks.

Arts & Humanities in class 12: Maximum weights
If you studied Arts/humanities in class 12 and had scored 45% or less marks, weightage of 1 point goes to you. The weightage in Arts stream rises faster than in Science and commerce streams as the maximum weight of 10 points is available with only 85% marks in Arts in class 12 as against 90% marks required in science and commerce stream. While 45 to 50% in Arts will get a weightage of 2 points; 50 to 60% a weightage of 3; 60 to 70% in Arts at class 12 will be awarded a weightage of 5 points in rating score in the first stage short listing at IIM Ahmedabad. This weightage was available to Science and commerce streams with 70 to 80% and 65 to 75% marks respectively.

Bachelor’s degree: High weightage to low scorers in Arts
Targeting to boost greater academic diversity, the PGP 2017-19 admission policy at IIM Ahmedabad has announced lower weightage to higher percentage of marks to Science, Engineering, Commerce disciplines whereas Arts, Humanities, Medicine, CA, ICWA, CS scores will be awarded higher weightage at low percentage of marks. The maximum weightage of 10 points is available to graduates in Science, Commerce & other allied disciplines with more than 80% marks; to Engineering graduates with more than 85% marks but this weightage of 10 points is available to graduates in Arts/Humanities with 75% marks; in Medicine with 70% marks and for CA/ICWA/CS with only 63% marks. 

Past academic cut-offs
Sharing the cut-off applied to various disciplines at class 12 while awarding weights in admission to PGP 2015-17 batch , IIM Ahmedabad has advised as follows-


PGP 2015-17
Cut off percentage – Class 12

PGP 2016-18
Cut off percentage – Class 12







Arts & Humanities



IIM Ahmedabad is the only Indian Institute of Management that has announced weightage for less than 60% marks scored in academics right from standard 10 to graduation for all the streams in its shortlisting criteria. Other IIMs award no weightage to less than 60% marks in academics.

IIMA lowers qualifying percentile in CAT 2016
The first stage shortlisting based on CAT 2016 scores for admission to PGP 2017-19 batch at IIM Ahmedabad will now require only a minimum 80 percentile overall as against 90 last year and only 70  in each of the 3 sections as against 80 last year.  IIM Ahmedabad will use ‘Application Rating’ (AR) score of an applicant at different stages of the selection process. An applicant’s AR score is the sum of the different rating scores ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ based on their percentage of marks obtained in the 10th standard, the 12th standard (depending upon the stream) and the bachelor’s degree programme (depending upon the discipline) respectively. For different streams/disciplines the equivalent ARs are arrived at by using a percentile equivalence of the score distributions using previous year’s CAT data.

Shortlist by 2nd week of January 2017
IIMA shortlists candidates for AWT & PI independent of the other IIMs. Hence it is possible to observe variations in the lists of the candidates shortlisted by different IIMs.  Details of the candidates shortlisted will be made available on the IIMA website tentatively by the second week of January 2017 after the CAT results are published. Shortlisted candidates would also be sent AWT & PI call letters by IIMA. No communication would be sent to applicants who are not shortlisted for AWT & PI.

Final admission offer
After the AWT & PI round, admission offers are made by IIMA to successful candidates. The ranking and the final selection is based on a diverse set of attributes which includes performance in CAT, performance in AWT & PI, academic, co-curricular and extra-curricular achievements, work experience etc. Candidates, who appear in Academic Writing Test (AWT) & Personal Interview (PI) will be able to view whether they have been offered admission by IIMA tentatively during the second week of April 2017 by visiting the IIMA website. Admission offer letter would be sent to all successful candidates. Candidates, who are offered admission, need to confirm their acceptance by completing all the required formalities by the first/second week of May 2017. Some candidates may also be placed on the waiting list initially during the second week of April 2017. Offers to candidates on the waiting list would depend upon the number of successful candidates accepting the offer made by IIMA.  Since CAT 2016 is the mandatory exam for admission to IIM Ahmedabad, candidates have to appear in the exam first. Registration for CAT 2016 will remain open till September 22, 2016 and the exam will be held on December 4, 2016 in 2 sessions. – 


IIT, IIM to get equal accreditation rights on a par with NAAC

HRD minister announces policy decision to check national assessment body’s power

In a major step taken by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and Indian Institute of Management (IIM) across the country have now been granted accreditation authority, on a par with the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). Union minister of human resource development (MHRD) Prakash Javadekar made the announcement during a programme at the Indira Group of Institutes, held in Wakad on Saturday. While this move is undoubtedly aimed at curbing NAAC’s power, following several complaints of misuse and malpractice, this is also an absolute volte-face by the government, which has had its share of differences with these educational institutes. Said Javadekar, “India has 700 universities, 38,000 educational institutions and 1.5 crore students opting for higher education. Yet, NAAC is the only accreditation authority we have. We have received several complaints of NAAC members misusing this power. Therefore, we have now taken a policy decision to rationalise the accreditation process and allow accreditation authority to government institutions like IIT and IIM.”

He added, “NAAC is currently issuing accreditation to 1,000 institutions in a year, which means they could take 38 years for all of them. We would like to complete the target in the next 10 years. This decision will work as a support system and ensure transparency in the assessment and accreditation process. We have discussed the matter with the heads of the institutes.” Devang Khakhar, director of IIT Bombay, told Mirror, “We don’t have any idea of how this will work yet. But, we certainly appreciate this decision taken by the MHRD. It is still in the initial stages — next week we have a meeting with the HRD minister on this issue. After that, the Centre will frame a final draft on the functioning of the institutions in this matter.”

Dr Arun Nigvekar, founder of NAAC and former chairman of University Grants Commission (UGC) told Mirror, “NAAC’s main function is to give accreditation and assessment to educational institutions and universities after spot inspections. The norms and regulations are designed in keeping with the international norms of UNESCO. In 2010, when I was chairman of UGC, I had submitted a detailed report for allowing assessment and accreditation rights not only to government institutions like IIT and IIM, but also private agencies so that the target could be achieved. Now, with the number of students and institutions and universities increasing every year, NAAC has been unable to meet its target. This is a good decision by the HRD ministry and will certainly lend support to NAAC on a national level.” – Courtesy

Start-up Village SV.Co to mentor students set up Start-up Centres of Excellence

The Times of India | Laxmi Prasanna | TNN | Aug 21, 2016 |

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Aligning with the Central government Start-up India mission to set up Atal Innovation Centres (AIC), Start-up Village Digital incubator SV.Co is set to mentor engineering college students to set up AIC which will be developed as Start-up Centres of Excellence.  “Start-up India has invited applications from colleges to set up incubators as Atal Innovation Centers. Having a robust management support and students start-ups in campus are crucial for getting selected to these national programmes,” said Start-up Village Chairman Sanjay Vijayakumar.  SV.CO, pegged as the world’s first digital incubator for students, will develop incubators as AICs which will then be upgraded as Start-up Centres of Excellence (CoE). It will be developed at the 147 colleges across the state where Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Centre of the Kerala Start-up Mission is functioning.

SV.CO and its industry partners will provide direct support and specific training on best practices to both faculty and students of selected colleges, he added. Internet Giant Facebook has recently signed an agreement with Start-up Village for industry-academia collaboration. Vijayakumar will announce the Start-up CoE programme during a presentation at the all-Kerala IEDC meet, being organised by KSUM on Tuesday. The CoE programme is a bid to create a robust and conducive ecosystem for harnessing the innovation potential of students in an academic set up, he said. Earlier, SV.CO, a digital makeover of Start-up Village at Kochi has launched #StartInCollege programme to select 50 student teams from across the country to build products and launch to early customers in six months. “The #StartInCollege programme has received an overwhelming support from students and faculty across the state. Faculty and management of many colleges have requested support from SV.CO to build a start-up culture amongst their students,” Vijayakumar said.  All college managements can nominate up to 10 teams from amongst their students across branches for #StartInCollege programme at http://www.sv.co. If at least three teams from a college get selected, that college will become eligible for the Start-up CoE programme by SV.CO.  “The selected students will be fully supported to become successful and turn into role models to inspire other students within the college and community,” Vijayakumar said, adding that the “The best faculty will also be taken to Silicon Valley for global exposure.” – Courtesy       /        https://www.sv.co/         /        https://www.sv.co/sixways

Nearly 10 lakh teachers’ posts lying vacant across country: Union MoS HRD

The Times of India | Priyangi Agarwal | TNN | Aug 20, 2016 |

BAREILLY: Union minister of state for human resource development (HRD) Mahendra Nath Pandey said on Saturday that there are nearly 8-10 lakh posts of teachers lying vacant in schools and higher educational institutions across the country. He said that the government is taking initiative to clear the backlog and is also inviting suggestions to update the education policy which has not been revised since 1976.  Pandey, who was in Bareilly to participate in an event organized by Akhil Bharatiya Brahmin Mahasabha, told TOI, “Though it is true that there is an acute shortage of teachers in the country, it has been created due to a long backlog of posts lying vacant over years and we are working to appoint more faculty members soon. We have identified that there is requirement of nearly 10 lakh teachers across the country in both schools and higher educational institutions.”  Hinting at a revamp of the education policy, Pandey said, “In our country, the education policy is not properly implemented as it was first made in 1962 and then it was revised in 1976. However, no successive government took the initiative to revise it in all these years. We are now inviting suggestions to introduce changes according to the current challenges and prepare a new education policy.”

Asked about universities not being able to maintain quality due to rising number of affiliated colleges which at times run into hundreds, Pandey said, “Fixing total number of affiliated colleges per university is in the agenda of both central and state governments. We are thinking about it.”The minister said that maintaining quality of higher education was his priority. “Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) scheme has been introduced to improve the standard of higher education in the country. Besides, we are working to connect out students with facilities offered at international levels through satellite. Our students will be able to learn latest techniques and they will be granted an additional 20% marks for this.”  –  Courtesy

UGC to set up national digital library of India (NDL) : A single window access to e-learning facility

The Times of India | TNN | Aug 19, 2016 |

Kolhapur: The University Grants Commission (UGC) will set up a National Digital Library (NDL) in an attempt to provide single window access to e-learning facility to post-graduate courses.  In a letter issued on August 16, UGC secretary Jaspal Sandhu has asked the students of the universities and colleges to register themselves on the NDL portal (https://ndl.iitkgp.ac.in). “The ministry of human resources development under its National Mission on Education has entrusted IIT Kharagpur to host, coordinate and set-up National Digital Library towards building a national asset,” the letter states. It further states, “The objective of project is to integrate all the existing digitized and digital contents available with different institutions. More specifically, it is to provide a single-window access with e-learning facility to different groups of users ranging from primary to higher education.” The letter said that from single window of NDL, educational material, more than 40 types of learning resources, and 13 lakh items in more than 70 languages can be accessed. In order to making the most out of these resources, the UGC has asked the officials to advise students to register themselves on the NDL portal at https://ndl.iitkgp.ac.in/.  The Shivaji University, Kolhapur (SUK) officials the UGC move was a unique and fine approach to provide vast and varied content to the students. University officials already have access to various journals for higher education, but the digital library is altogether a different scenario, said the official. –  Courtesy   /      https://ndl.iitkgp.ac.in/

Published on 16/08/2016   :  UGC Letter reg.: National Digital Library (NDL)

Free access for Indians to library of cricket books

The New Indian Express |  By PTI |   18th August 2016 |

NEW DELHI: A one-year free digital access to Indian and world cricket content is being offered in a collaboration between Bloomsbury, Wisden, and UK-based Public Library Online. “Under the initiative, all citizens with an Indian IP address will have free access for a year to a library of cricket books at Public Library Online from Wisden, the most distinguished cricket publisher in the world,” Bloomsbury Publishing said in a statement today.  The library includes all four Wisden India Almanacks, the last five ‘Wisden Shorter Almanacks’, the ‘Wisden Book of Test Cricket 2009-14’, ‘Wisden on the Ashes’, ‘Benaud in Wisden’ and ‘Don’ts for Cricketers.’ These are available for online streaming on any Internet-enabled device at Public Library Online through the url in.publiclibraryonline.com. The library is an ‘online only’ Ebooks licensing company with books from leading international publishing houses and offers concurrent online access to a range of fiction and non-fiction, from a range of renowned publishers.

The initiative is being launched to coincide with the 4th test match of India-West Indies series on the 18th of August 2016. Jahir Hussain, CEO of Public Library Online said, “We are excited to offer public library online eBooks to the entire Indian Public. We feel proud to be part of the ‘Digital India’ chapters.” “The Wisden archives are an unparalleled resource, for curious readers and cricket buffs alike. For well over a century, Wisden has been one of cricket’s conscience-keepers. and the Almanack’s essays have chronicled the sweeping, almost cataclysmic, changes the game has seen,” Dileep Premachandran, Editor-in-chief of Wisden India said. “Public Library Online has now taken an important first step in opening up this treasure trove to readers, in a country where cricket is so much more than just a game,” he said. –  Courtesy

Welcome to Wisden India Free eBooks  :  Sponsored by Bloomsbury

Choose a book from one of the digital shelf below. Once you’ve chosen your book, you can read this online anytime anywhere in India. We hope you enjoy these books.   Please download our app for all iOS and Android devices available from :

Wisden India Cricket T200 shelf is now available for Free in India

http://in.publiclibraryonline.com/       /        http://in.publiclibraryonline.com/subscriber/collections

Indian engineering student, Vimal Govind Manikandan builds a wearable ironman suit for just Rs 50,000

India TV Lifestyle Desk, New Delhi | 13 Aug 2016 |

Vimal Govind Manikandan, an engineering student from Kerala has built a wearable robot at a cost of just Rs 50,000. The fully functional suit weighs around 100 kg and can lift up to 150kg. The only feature this suit lacks from making it the one Tony Stark owns is that it cannot help you fly. 

Speaking about his innovation, Manikandan told a leading daily, “Actually the future of this product is mainly in defence, industrial weight lifting, material handling etc.” American Society of Research (ASR) had organised a conference in Singapore on Mechanics and Manufacturing (ICMM 2016) and Manikandan there presented his robot. Out of the 13 countries that presented, Manikandan’s paper was selected as the best and will be published in the International Journal of Mechanical and Robotics Research soon.  Manikandan said that he was inspired by Hollywood movies, especially the ones in the Avengers movies, to build the robot.  To note, this is not the first exosuit. His team had also built their first prototype back in 2015, which was much larger but mechanically-powered. –  Courtesy   /       https://youtu.be/z0nErNMBm5Q

Now, you can buy used books on Amazon India

Times of India | Ranjani Ayyar | TNN | Aug 10, 2016 |

CHENNAI: Amazon.in on Wednesday launched a dedicated ‘used’ books store with over 1,00,000 offers across genres such as literature, romance, biography and textbooks .  With the launch of a dedicated used books store, Amazon.in has become a one-stop destination for customers to buy new as well as used books at attractive price points and enjoy fast and reliable delivery.  Over the last three years, Amazon.in has seen phenomenal growth. It has over 9,400 sellers on the platform selling books. “We are excited to launch a dedicated used books store for customers on Amazon.in. Over the years, we have witnessed a growing demand for books from customers and our constant effort has been to bring them more buying choices. With this launch, reading enthusiasts across the country can now buy used books with the same ease and convenience as buying new books,” said Noor Patel, director category management, Amazon India.  The books on the Amazon Used Books store come from sellers who have undertaken to list and sell only genuine products, according to a statement from the company. Used books are graded by sellers as Used-Like New, Used-Good and Used-Acceptable based on their condition. As a launch offer, customers who purchase used books for over Rs 399 from the same seller are offered free shipping.   –  Courtesy   /  http://www.amazon.in/used/books

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