Seminars and Workshops

Seminars and Workshops

“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all” – Aristotle

National Seminar – Education for Change: Implications for Teacher

Navrachana University organized a two day National Seminar on the theme “Education for Change: Implications for Teacher Education on 15th and 16th February, 2013. This Seminar was the sixth one in the continuous endeavour for deliberations in the field of education undertaken by the Navrachana College of Education, now under School of Science and Education under Navrachana University. For focused deliberations, the major theme was divided into four sub-themes: Reflections on Purpose of Education, Humanizing the process of Education, Examination Reforms and Search for Alternatives in Education. Forty five papers were received from different institutions in and outside Gujarat.

Mr. Narendra Pachkhede, a Commonwealth Fellow, speaker on the global circuit, anthropologist in education and policy analyst delivered the Keynote Address. He essentially problematised the motion at hand: Education for Change – Implications for Teacher Education. He identified the ongoing tension in the scholarly literature between education as normative condition with varying morphological characteristics, on one hand, or seeing education as socially embedded experience, imagined and lived on the other. Similarly, he conceptualized what the idea of Change invokes. Problematizing this relationship between education and change, he argued: “the aporia dictates that the condition of education for change is also the condition of impossibility of education for change”. In the inaugural address, Prof Veena Mistry, former Provost, Navrachana University, cited various experiences in Teacher Education and the need for deciding a direction for change in it. The theme paper was presented by Prof V D Thomas, Professor, Navrachana University. Prof Gurdev Singh, Provost, Navrachana University accorded a formal welcome emphasized on the concept of design in education.

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Dr. P V Xavier, Principal, proposed a vote of thanks. The major recommendations that emerged from the two day seminar provide a direction for the further action and reflection which are as follows: Reflections on purpose of education in different contexts are vital as it provides direction for implementation; Critical importance to be given to Teacher Education ; the search for alternatives in education can begin initially with making alterations in the current system; the spirit of examinations reforms needs to be inculcated for its effective implementation and the humanist approach which focuses more on the learner and teacher as humans needs to be nurtured.

In the Valedictory Function, Smt. Tejal Amin, Chairperson, Navrachana Education Society,emphasized that the change in schools begins from change in Teacher Education. She also explained the need to integrate the best from different systems of education. Prof Ganesh Devy, Founder and Director, Bhasha Tribal Academy, Tejgadh, in his Valedictory address questioned the need for schools in society. He further directed attention to the changing nature of knowledge and emergence of ‘knowledges’. He further stated that there was need for a large number of teachers. In this connection he shared his experience of educating the tribal children. Thus there was a need for teachers for the marginalized sections of society who are hungry for knowledge. The two days ended with vote of thanks by Dr. Archana Tomar, convener, National Seminar.

A workshop titled Multiple Intelligence: ATheory for Everyone, was organized by the B Sc,B Ed Program, on 18 October, 2013.The theory of Multiple Intelligences was first propounded by Howard Gardener, a Psychologist and Professor at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education in his 1983 book “Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligence”. According to Howard Gardener, all human beings have nine Intelligences: Verbal-Linguistic Intelligence, Logical- Mathematical Intelligence, Musical Intelligence, Spatial Intelligence, Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence, Interpersonal Intelligence, Intrapersonal Intelligence, and Existential Intelligence. This implies that- All human beings have a unique blend of capabilities and skills (intelligences) which can be nurtured and strengthened or ignored and weakened. The purpose behind the workshop was to create awareness amongst both Educators and Guardians regarding Multiple Intelligences in order to better equip them with facilitating learning amongst their charges. The workshop effectively addressed the concerns regarding the diverse learning needs of individuals with individual dominant intelligences. The workshop was convened by Dr. Mandira Sikdar, Coordinator, PhD, B Sc B Ed Programs, and designed by the faculty members of the Program- Dr. Elizabeth Robin, Dr. Darshee Baxi, Dr. Shilpa Popat, Dr. K Poonam Kumar, and Ms. Pramila Ramani.

The sessions concentrated on providing tools to the participants whereby they can identify multiple intelligences in their children/ students and provide meaningful learning environments and opportunities based on individual intellectual strengths and weaknesses and thereby enable excellence. The workshop received enthusiastic participation with a total of forty two participants attending the same.

Teachers as practitioners and professionals are actors engaged in various professional actions in school. Research is one of the tools to improve professional actions. Instead of someone else doing a research on teachers’ practices/actions, teachers themselves research and reflect on it. In this way, teachers don’t remain as knowledge users but become knowledge makers. Action research is a practical approach towards professional inquiry in any social situation. In the context of school, professional practice can be teaching, management or administration in a school. Action research studies problems related to real classroom situations and/or various work situations in a school set up. After identifying a problem, it is followed by development, implementation and testing of strategy, plan, or procedure aimed at improving a problem situation within the teaching time.

Mr. Adil Khan, Faculty member B Tech, organized a two day Robotic Workshop in association with Robospecies on 9 & 10 October 2013 for the students. B Tech Students Chirag Pathak and Dishant Patel acted as student co-ordinators for theworkshop. Robotic Learning is a highly interesting field, and the designing of a robotic system would require the students to incorporate principles of mechanical engineering, electronics engineering and computer science. Thus, a robotics workshop was an amazing platform for the students to apply the fundamentals learnt during classroom hours. The participants successfully assembled and programmed line following robots. To give the workshop a little competitive edge, the students’ robo creations then competed on a track. The first three groups won a cost free direct entry to IIT Bombay Techfest.

A two day workshop on Ethical Hacking was organized by BCA Program, in association with webcare Techologies, on 3 and 4 August 2013 the workshop covered Ethical hacking &Cyber Forensics. The workshop covered topics like“ “Hacking Legal or Illegal”,”Inside Threads: Operating system hacking & its securities”, “E-mails: Exploitation & its securities”, “Malwares: Trojan, Viruses & worms”, “Playing with Networks”, “Internetworld wide web attacks (website hacking)”, “Mobile Hacking : VoIP and Android”, “Software Reverse Engineering(software cracking )”. The workshop was enthusiastically received by student participants who got a participation Certificate and a tool kit each at the end of the workshop.

National Education Summit – Vibrant Gujarat-2014

Navrachana University hosted a two day Conference on Reinventing Higher Education at the National Educational Summit- Vibrant Gujarat- 2014, on January 10 and 11, 2014. The Reinventing Higher Education Conference adopted an exploratory approach involving educational experts and those entrenched in higher education to learn about the state of higher education, outline challenges confronting higher education and develop recommendations to bring about excellence in higher education. While most conferences offer a dialogical platform to undertake intellectual discourse and develop informed perspectives on important issues, the conference on Reinventing Higher Education undertook an exercise in deconstructing higher education to better understand the landscape that makes up the educational space, uncover the challenges confronting those offering and receiving education, and develop an understanding of interventions needed to bring about changes in the educational fabric.

The first day of the conference consisted of presentations by two institutional builders, Dr. Indira Parikh, Director, FLAME and Professor Abir Mullick, Provost, Navrachana University, who described the development and implementation of innovative educational philosophy and their connection to building excellent institutions. This was followed by presentations by eminent academicians from India and abroad. Included in the list of eminent speakers were- Dr. Kishore Singh, Special Rapporteur on Right to Education, United Nations; Prof. Shilpa Das, from National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad; Prof. Dr. Lydia Szpyrkovicz, Scientific Attache, Embassy of Italy; Prof. Ingrid Paoletti from Politecnico di Milano, Italy; Shri Khursid Batliwala, and Shri Dinesh Ghodke, Directors Sri Sri University.

The second day comprised of two Sessions- In the pre lunch session, first, Dr. Sudhir Jain, Director, IIT-Gandhinagar presented the state of technology education and the need for exposure to social sciences. Then, the FLAME, Pune group of four faculty members presented a format for comprehensive education in social science and innovative practices for exploration, community education and critical thinking. Third, two teams of architecture faculty, one team consisting of two members from BNCA Pune and another team of three members from SPA Bhopal presented the open-educational educational practices in architecture education followed by assessment methods that offer reflective feedback and constructive criticism. Fourth, a video Interview of Padma Bhusan Shri K. G. Subramanium , where he shared his experiences on education at Shanti Niketan. He highlighted the need to develop individual thinking through the involvement of the environment (nature) and practice of peer (student-to-student) supported education. Lastly, Shri Ashoke Chatterjee, Ex-Director, National Institute of Design presented the Jawaja project, a collaborative initiative by IIM Ahmadabad and NID in the 1970s.

The second half consisted of Breakout sessions in which participants undertook a brainstorming exercise on topical issues related to higher education. The groups discussed topics in higher education from all perspectives using their personal and professional experience. They selected a leader to represent the members and a moderator at every table took notes and directed conversation. This was followed by a panel discussion involving all members of the breakout session. The panelists were the group leaders and the panel was directed by a Moderator. First the panelists summarized the table discussion and then presented the recommendations made by the group members. Following the presentation, the audience asked questions and discussed recommendations. Afterwards NUV members drafted a detailed report, along with the conclusions and recommendations regarding the steps needed to reinvent higher Education and sent it to Govt. of Gujarat.

NUV Connects School Education to University

With a rich legacy of quality education from Navrachana Education Society, Navrachana University aims to add value to the field of education. NUV Fraternity is working together to bring out novel changes in the field of Education in General and Higher Education in Particular. Towards this Endeavour an idea of bringing the education community in the Banyan City together, germinated and thus was born the “Education Banyan Club.”

Thus ,On 28 January 2014 launched an informal forum called “Education Banyan Club”, which intends to develop a collective platform for school teachers, administrators, academics and those interested in school education to meet and discuss important issues confronting the academic community, exchange ideas for improvement, and thereby articulate a vision for education and advocate change.

Padma Shri Prof. Sitanshu Yashashchandra Mehta, an educationist and an eminent litterateur of Gujarat was the Guest of Honour and Speaker for the first session of the EBC. On the occasion Prof. Shitanshu Yashaschandra has explained the role of curiosity in the learning and development process. He also emphasized how teachers, administrator can play vital role. The forum discussed about hierarchy of language and preference of language learning in modern era. Prof. Abir Mullick explained how the language is being preserved in the purest form by Indians residing abroad. He also emphasized that it is a need to communicate a child to learn different languages and the power of culture understanding thinking knowledge. Teachers from diverse background add true colors through their experience.

School principals, senior academics and educationists from schools across Vadodara participated in the event and expressed a firm belief that the Education Banyan Club, initiated by Navrachana University will bring improvement in the quality of education in the Banyan City of Vadodara.

Also on the same day Navrachana University Organized a Poster Competetion on “My Education My Dream”. At the invitation of the Gujarat Government, Navrachana University hosted a national conference on higher education called, Reinventing Higher Education ,at the National Educational Summit- Vibrant Gujarat- 2014, on January 10 and 11, 2014. As part of the conference, NUV invited high school students to imagine college education and present their thoughts and dreams in the form of posters. They described dream education through questions like: what is their ideal education? Why is that education important? What type of program, delivery and education system will help them to receive their dream education? Student made a poster on their dream education and presented the information in 350 words.The poster making competition received over whelming response from schools in and around Vadodara and it provided an opportunity for students to express their dreams and aspirations about higher education. The students came up with “Out of the box “ideas and more than 75 students entered in the competition. The posters were on display at the NUV Lobby and the onlookers were impressed by the range and depth of the ideas that students expressed through their posters and words. The posters were judged by Mr. Indro Promit Roy a well known painter, Ms. Manna Shah, Faculty, Arts from Tejas Vidyalaya and Ms. Pallavi Nimbalwar , faculty, Language, from Navrachana University.

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