Kathmandu, June 8
The country’s largest and oldest university — Tribhuvan University — has claimed that it has almost completed all preparations to create digital identification of its students, teachers and other staffers to begin online teaching and learning amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
TU said it had cracked a deal with Microsoft to create its own digital domain for almost 500,000 members, including more than 450,000 students.
According to Ridish Kumar Pokharel, executive director at the Office of Planning Directorate, TU, the varsity will now have its own domain to keep information related to curriculum, faculties, colleges, digital library and other resources. The website will have separate pages for colleges (constituent or affiliated) which can be accessed by the college chief and teachers of that particular teacher. “Each student, after being enrolled in the university, will get a unique identity name and the password to access the site, where students can get access to their curriculum and even communicate with their teachers,” Pokharel said. Each student can get around 50 GB data to use the website where they can download their curriculum and research materials and also upload their assignments and research works.
Pokharel, however, also said digitising the entire university could be a challenging task for a country like Nepal.
TU claimed that the new system would help in giving continuity to teaching-learning activities even during the lockdown, however, it is not likely to bear fruit any time soon. TU had announced it would digitise itself five years ago, but is still struggling to set up computers and projectors in its colleges and classrooms and provide internet access.
Despite all odds, the university claims it has almost completed creating accounts for teachers and colleges.
The university has also provided training to teachers on online teaching. It has also started the process of buying servers with high bandwidth for the purpose.
“We are hoping that the new digital platform will help students communicate with teachers, get research materials and focus on their studies even if the lockdown continues,” Pokheral said.
A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 9, 2020, of The Himalayan Time