DST-IBM Collaboration for STEM | 10 Oct 2020

Why in News

Recently, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) India have announced collaborations to scale up the initiatives, Vigyan Jyoti and Engage with Science.

  • Both DST and IBM India aim to create a robust STEM ecosystem that nurtures critical thinkers, problem-solvers, and next-generation innovators.
  • DST and IBM India will work together to further integrate and develop science and technology in the education ecosystem with short term courses, workshops, mentoring, and online science content communication for teachers and students in India.

Key Points

  • Vigyan Jyoti:
    • It was launched by the DST in 2019.
    • Aims:
      • To promote Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) learning among girl students and build confidence and excitement towards these streams.
        • STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in 4 specific disciplines, science, technology, engineering and mathematics, in an interdisciplinary and applied approach.
      • To create a level-playing field for meritorious girls from grades 9 to 12, especially from the top colleges in the areas where girls are hugely underrepresented.
      • To solve the multidimensional problems associated with the meagre representation of women.
    • The programme provides a scholarship, visit to nearby scientific institutions, science camps, lecturers from eminent women scientists, and career counselling.
    • It is currently implemented by Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya (JNV) in 58 districts, with the participation of about 2900 students.
      • JNV is a system of central schools for talented students predominantly from rural areas in India.
      • They are run by Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, New Delhi, an autonomous organization under the Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of Education.
  • Engage with Science:
    • Engage with Science by Vigyan Prasar is another initiative to build interest and create a community of practice with students, teachers, and scientists connecting the high school students to the higher education institutions.
      • Vigyan Prasar is an autonomous body under the DST to help India’s science popularisation agenda through several strategic initiatives.
    • This is an interactive platform that will be built on the Over-The-Top (OTT) platform to encourage and inspire high school students to pursue science and technology for a career.
      • An OTT media service is any online content provider that offers streaming media as a standalone product.
      • The term is commonly applied to video-on-demand platforms, but also refers to audio streaming, messaging services, or internet-based voice calling solutions.
      • It needs access to the internet and smartphones, tablets, laptop/computers.
  • Benefits of the Collaboration:
    • It will make these programmes reach the students and teachers in interactive ways on a large scale which will make learning relevant and foster scientific spirit among the country’s youth.
    • Existing opportunities for meritorious girls to nurture their interest in STEM will be expanded through the learning platforms.
    • The engagement with science platforms will make students interact, participate and get involved with the sampling and active consumption of science and technology content, including Cloud, Big Data, etc. through the usage of digital tools.
    • This will strengthen the DST’s initiative to increase the number of women in technology fields.

Source: PIB