MADRAS: IIT Madras NPTEL translates thousands of technical courses into several regional languages

MADRAS: IIT Madras NPTEL translates thousands of technical courses into several regional languages

MADRAS: IIT Madras NPTEL has translated to Hindi Language as many as 207 technical courses including courses such as the ‘Introduction to Internet of Things’. To ensure accuracy and quality of translations, NPTEL has a team of 1,029 Hindi translators and 139 quality controllers (QCs).

 Moreover, NPTEL has published 199 e-books in Hindi on its website, to expand access to educational resources in the language. Additionally, audio recordings totalling 1,200 hours of video content are available in Hindi, to enrich the learning experience of Hindi-speaking learners.

NPTEL has prioritised major disciplines, notably Computer Science (35 courses), Social Sciences (32 courses), and Electrical Engineering (29 courses). While actively soliciting feedback from course participants, NPTEL received positive responses for translations such as ‘The Joy of Computing using Python’.

The official notification claims that efforts are underway to expand the translation efforts, with courses such as ‘Introduction to Machine Learning’ being translated into Hindi using machine learning tools, accompanied by voiceovers for enhanced accessibility.

NPTEL has translated its courses into 11 languages, including Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Odia, Punjabi, Tamil and Telugu. The aim is to help learners who completed their schooling in regional languages and are transitioning to English for technical education.

Details and access to the translated courses can be obtained from

Prof Rajesh Kumar, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras and NPTEL translation coordinator said, “Every language is a world in itself. Without translation, I would be confined to the borders of my own world. NPTEL strives to break this barrier.”

Prof Abhijit P Deshpande, also a NPTEL translation coordinator and a faculty, Department of Chemical Engineering, IIT Madras said, “NPTEL-IIT Madras is adopting innovative ways to make the translated content available to learners in India. They include the use of subtitles, video Text tracks, Transcripts, books with slides and audio tracks, among others. The key objective is to build capacity in India in high quality translation of science/engineering content.”

NPTEL (National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning), is a joint venture of the IITs and IISc, funded by the Ministry of Education (MoE), Government of India, and was launched in 2003. Initially started as a project to take quality education across the country, NPTEL now offers hundreds of courses for certification every semester to students and working professionals across India.  While originally conceived to democratise access to quality education nationwide, NPTEL has broadened its scope, offering a catalogue of over 700 courses for certification every semester across 22 disciplines. These translated materials undergo rigorous review by Quality Control (QC) experts and are made available on the SWAMYAM and NPTEL websites in various formats, such as PDF transcripts, e-books, subtitles, scrolling text, and audio formats, all accessible free of charge. As on date, over 20,000 hours of video content spanning 244 NPTEL courses including 163 engineering courses have been successfully translated. Technical terminology is retained in English (transliterated) to ensure accuracy and enhance the overall learning experience. These translated transcripts are compiled into books for easy reference, with 980 such books currently available in various regional languages on the NPTEL website, the translation book site, and the Swayam portal.

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