IIT Bombay, is all set to become the first IIT to introduce a mandatory course on gender awareness for all students and staff members.
In a bid to create awareness around gender sensitivity in the campus and make it a comfortable space for all, the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay has introduced a mandatory 'Gender Awareness Course'. This obligatory, zero-credit course will be offered to students at all levels, for the first time in the institute's history of 63 years. It is also the first IIT that has included a course like this.
An initiative towards gender inclusivity
As per Director Prof Subhasis Chaudhuri, this Massive Open Online Course on gender awareness is an initiative of the Gender Cell of the institute. The academic council of the institute has made it a pass/no-pass mandatory, zero credit, self-study course for all students. The Women Cell of the institute, renamed to The Gender Cell last year, has been working very hard to make the campus more welcoming, added the director.
The objective of the course
Systemic issues of patriarchy, gender and power inequality that underlie gender stereotypes, discrimination and sexual harassment are covered under this course. It highlights the importance of understanding this in social and cultural context to bring about a change in attitudes, said the conveyor of the cell.
The course was planned after understanding the need to train and enhance the knowledge of students to fit in and contribute effectively in gender-diverse teams, offices and workplaces all over the world. Gender sensitivity and awareness in the global corporate world today, make some for highly valued skills. The course is expected to make the students better prepared for the same.
Course to be available in English and Hindi
The course, imparted in two languages, English and Hindi will be available online. The course, expected to roll out for the students soon, will eventually be available for the staff and faculty as well. It emphasises sexual harassment and how it is an obvious form of gender inequality. It also stresses the institute's responsibility in dealing with this issue and the need for it to be addressed collectively. In order to help other academic institutions to train their members, a proposal to make this online course available for all educational institutes, has been made.
Log on to the official website of the Gender Cell of IIT Bombay to know more about other workshops and trainings on gender sensitivity.