The three letters I.I.T. can mean different things to different people. If you are a student or a parent of a 9th grade student or above aspiring to get into an IIT, then you can look forward to a dreadful work schedule in the next few years with your days starting at unearthly hours. If you have gone through an IIT, you would be proud of your achievement. For most others, it is a lottery, as despite having 25 odd IITs in the country, the first year engineering admission count still stands in the order of several thousands, while about 50 times more people take the entrance exam JEE. The IIT stamp has become a trademark in the last 50 years, thanks to their rigorous curriculum and internationally experienced faculty. Several IITians are in great positions all over the world!
Beyond Core Engineering programs Very few seem to know that IITs have a lot more than undergraduate engineering degrees. They have several arts and science programs, master’s and PhD programs, internships and outreach programs that a student in a school or a college should watch out for. All IITs have PhD and two year MSc programs in basic sciences including mathematics, physics and chemistry. IIT Bombay has an interesting master’s degree in Applied Statistics and Informatics (ASI) which is a sought out program in the current data science era. IIT Kharagpur has a school of medical science and technology which has several interesting Master’s programs targeting MBBS degree holders. They even have a plan of starting a MBBS program. IIT Kanpur has recently launched four eMaster’s program for industry professionals.
IIT experience for the masses IITs are also working hard to increase their access. IIT Gandhinagar has a non-degree program by which any student from any college can apply to spend a semester at IIT Gandhinagar. IIT Bombay has several short term online certificate courses, some of which are free if you do not need a certificate. IIT Madras has an 8 month diploma in data science or programming for anyone who has completed two years of undergraduate degree. They need to qualify through an in-person exam.
IIT Madras has launched a new BSc degree program (in programming and data science), which experts believe will be game changing in higher education. It is an opportunity to get an IIT degree by doing courses online with any background sitting anywhere. For the first time, anybody of any age and any background (as long as they have passed 12th standard) can register for this program. While most of the lectures are online, the exams are conducted in centres all over the country (Overseas: Srilanka and UAE). This is a three year program with multiple exit points. There is an exam after four weeks of registering, on topics that are covered in the first four weeks of lectures. After clearing that exam, one can go on to the first year of the program. The courses are divided into foundations level, diploma level and degree level, and one can exit after clearing the foundations level with a certificate or after clearing the courses in diploma level (and foundations level) with a diploma. There is flexibility to complete these levels at an individual's pace subject to limits.
For precise eligibility criteria, the courses and fees, please refer to onlinedegree.iitm.ac.in