The Department of Higher Education will establish 10 English Language Labs in private colleges apart from the five Government colleges in the current academic year.
Earlier this year, the Department had signed an MoU with IIT-Kharagpur for setting up the labs in five Government and as many private colleges. Work at the Phulbani Government College, DD College in Keonjhar, RD Women’s College, SBR Govt College in Berhampur and SKCG College in Parlakhemundi is expected to end by next month.
The private colleges identified under the project are PN College of Khurda, Rayagada College, LN College in Jharsuguda, Science College in Ganjam, SVM College at Jagatsinghpur, Nayagarh College and Chandikhol College. The labs at Government colleges are coming up at a cost of ` 2 crore while the cost of those in private colleges are being worked out.
Since spoken and soft skills (computer knowledge) are pre-requisites for getting jobs, the need for starting these labs was felt by the State Government.
Sources in the Department said the IIT-Kharagpur has been asked to visit the identified private colleges to study infrastructure requirements and submit the feasibility report by September 10. Sandeep Pal of the Centre for Advanced Communication, IIT-Kharagpur, said the institution had invented an Interactive Software Integrated Learning System (ISILS), an updated electronic tool coupled with digital courseware for language and communication skill development that will be used in the proposed labs.
“Each lab will be equipped with one computer for one student, projector screen and other demonstration equipment,” he said. IIT-Kharagpur has been asked to prepare a project cost for 24-seater and 32-seater labs.