The Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University (YCMOU) was established by the Maharashtra State Legislative Act No XX of 1989; assented to by the Governor of the State on the 29th April 1989. The major objectives of the University are as follows.
The goal of the University is to become a “Mass Varsity” or the “Lok Vidyapeeth”. Most of its programmes are offered in the regional language (Marathi). The programmes lay a major emphasis on vocational/technical and research level courses. The structure, functioning and philosophy of the University is different from conventional universities. It has relaxed entry rules, flexibility in course combination, flexibility in choosing the place and pace of the study ,provision of individualized study etc. Their basic endeavour is to extend the Universitys outreach so as to carry knowledge to the doorsteps of every aspirant. The open university ploughs innovative path by supporting print material with audio-visual supplements and thereby making the message more effective and enduring as it reaches the deprived and disadvantaged.
These programmes are knowledge and skill oriented.
The academic programmes launched so far are modular and are characterized by the definite number of credit points which are awarded on completion of the programme. A credit point denotes the number of hours the student has to devote to study. Each credit point consists of 30-35 hours of study which includes reading, writing notes , consulting counselors and listening and watching to audio and video programmes. In accordance with the modular structure adopted , a student may take up a few courses collect the credit points for them and obtain a certificate. The some later date he may wish to take up other related courses. A combined collection of these and earlier credits may lead to a Diploma. A similar collection of credit for additional courses may lead eventually to a degree and then to a research programme.
A) Degree Programmes
B) Diploma Programmes
C) Certificate Programmes (C.P.)
D) Preparatory B.A. / B.Com Programme
These Programmes are conducted twice in an year. Post Graduate Research Programme
M.A., M.Com., M.Sc., M.Phil., Ph.D. (in Distance Education, Educational Communication and subject communication), M.Ed. and M.B.A. are the post graduate research programmes already launched. They are supported by study materials by indigenously developed workbooks. Except for M.Ed. and M.B.A. all the five post graduate research Programmes are based on communication in three categories, viz. distance education communication, educational communication and subject communication. Allied Activities Educational Programmes ,their development and operations are supported by the Centre for Instructional Technology, the Print Production Centre and the Audio-Visual Centre and the Training Centre. These centres together help academic division to tune information in a distance education format, enriching it and at the same time making its communication effective.
Educational Services and Network Unlike conventional universities, the open university is unique in many respects – its purpose, the course style and the delivery network. The goal of the university is to become a “Mass Varsity” . So it endeavours to reach every potential learner. The learners are not homogeneous and are from both formal and non-formal stream. Therefore, the study-material needs to be prepared in a communication efficient format for such a heterogeneous lot. Further, the University per se is not a teaching campus. Therefore programme delivery at YCMOU is done through a three-tier system linked with the University headquarters at Nashik. YCMOU has established seven regional centres at major cities of the state . Every regional centre has some study centres, sub-study centres and work centres under its jurisdiction. It is these study three types of centres that function as the interface between the University and the students. The students visit these centres periodically and attend counseling sessions., practical and audio-visual sessions. Student Services Division at the Headquarters and at Regional, District, Study, Sub-Study, Work centres and at Work places and Prayog Pariwar together constitute a programme delivery system. The centers are equipped with necessary infrastructure providing the learners with opportunities to get human support form counselors.
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University has introduced computerization and mechanization in its functions as it accepts guiding principles of cost effectiveness and modernization in organizing office administration. New equipment and techniques are exposed and new software are developed and the old are updated to meet the various requirements of University working.
The Student Evaluation Resource Centre (SERC) a unique feature of YCMOU is primarily engaged in evaluation and has been entrusted with the task of developing evaluation technology. The SERC processes examination material and updates its database of question banks, question papers and development of model question papers with synoptic answers. The “On Demand Examination Project” covers the revised preparatory and Foundation Courses. This will help to make paper setting more rational as it would be programme controlled and computerized. SERC is also developing a data bank of evaluation personnel.
The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICRA) New Delhi has sanctioned YCMOU a Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK). The KVK will act as nodal training and resource centre and will provide opportunities of higher training leading to Diploma or Degree for Village Extension Workers (VEWs), Agricultural Extension Officers (AEOs), Subject Matters Specialists (SMSs) etc. through distance education.
Programmes in Teacher Education The YCMOU has established an in-service teacher training programme in cooperation with the department of Education, Government of Maharashtra. This programme combines the distance education methodology with innovative face-to-face contact activity. To date an estimated 13000 teachers have been benefited from this programme.
The University conducts a Bachelor of Education (B.Ed) programme. Although it fetches a huge number of applications from teachers, only a number of students are admitted to maintain standards of the programme. An inservice training programme for the Heads of Secondary School in the state and the Master of Education Programme (M.Ed.) will be launched soon. Sanvad University is successfully executing the responsibility of publishing and distributing the YCMOU student information news letter “Sanvad”.
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