What is wrong with engineering courses in India? by Hemanth Kumar Tirupati

Answer by Hemanth Kumar Tirupati:

Disclaimer: This answer can be specific to Computer Science at IITs.

Unlike many answers, In most of the courses I have taken, its highly unlikely to get a good grade by just mugging the course content. Every course required us to put a lot of work outside classroom because of quizzes/semester examinations, assignments, surprise tests, course-projects etc., If you don’t pay attention in the class you will have to double that effort. Also most of the courses I have taken are very informative and deal with a wide variety of latest technologies. Though I am little worried about a few outdated professors that’s not my key concern here.

An average undergraduate CS student at IITM does way more courses per semester than a similar undergrad from world class universities like Stanford. This seems to be a good thing as we would be equipped with a greater breadth of knowledge. However, during my journey I have understood that it’s harming creative minds in many ways.

Students doesn’t get enough time to explore the new ideas, they jump into conclusions immediately after being reminded of a deadline to be submitted by that night. We might be able to understand and apply various techniques proposed in the literature but to create something novel we need to explore the uncharted territories, we need to try and fail even if it is for a thousand times. And, for all that time investment is a must.

I just can’t image what could have happened to Mark Zuckerberg at Stanford or Bill Gates at Harvard if they haven’t had enough time to think through their ideas. Not only is this having a serious impact on IITs but also on the future of India.

As my favourite professor always say

Think. Don’t just do. Set aside time to explore ideas. Thinking is more important than reading.

-Hem

What is wrong with engineering courses in India?

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