SWAYAM portal set for upgrade into ‘SWAYAM Plus’; education ministry to launch soon

SWAYAM Portal is the education ministry’s MOOC platform. It hosts free online courses from public institutions, including ones from IISc and IITs’ NPTEL.

Higher Education Secretary K Sanjay MurthyHigher Education Secretary K Sanjay Murthy

Shradha Chettri | February 14, 2024 | 05:46 PM IST

NEW DELHI: The government’s online learning platform, SWAYAM – full form, Study Webs of Active–Learning for Young Aspiring Minds – is set to get a new feature and it will be called the “SWAYAM Plus”. The education ministry will be launching it soon and the plus feature will include content created by industry platforms.

The SWAYAM portal is a massive open online courses (MOOC) platform of the government of India, which provides courses to students from Classes 9 till postgraduate studies. It offers free courses, but students have to pay a fee to write the proctored exams to obtain certificates.

At present, the platform has content by national institutes, central and state universities, University Grants Commission (UGC), All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), NPTEL (National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning) and others. NPTEL is an initiative by seven Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT Bombay, Delhi, Guwahati, Kanpur, Kharagpur, Madras and Roorkee) and Indian Institute of Science (IISc) for creating course content in engineering and science.

As per the SWAYAM portal, in January 2024, around 34,71,948 students are enrolled in various courses.


Describing the platform as one of the big digital public infrastructure (DPI) projects, higher education secretary, K Sanjay Murthy, said, “We are coming up with a Swayam + feature which will include the eminent industry platforms which have content in it. It could be TCS Ion, anyone who has signed an MOU with us to provide industry-relevant courses on the platform. UGC has allowed 40% of the credit to be taken through it. The courses taken through it will be credited into the APAAR platforms.”

The Automated Permanent Academic Account Registry (APAAR) assigns 12-digit identity numbers to students and is a digital repository where students’ records, achievements, and credentials will be stored. On Tuesday, the education minister inaugurated the national conference on APAAR and said that so far more than 25,000 crore APAAR IDs have been generated.

Industry platform on SWAYAM Plus

As per the data of the ministry, by July 2023, as many as 106 agreements had been signed with various organisations and institutions.

“The MoUs encompass partnerships with both public and private entities to foster innovation, research, and knowledge exchange in multiple domains, ushering in a new era of collaboration in education and industry-academia linkages,” said the statement.

Job Plus, a start-up providing skills training in the hospitality and service sector will be one of the industry partners on the SWAYAM plus.

Natwar Nagar, founder of Job Plus, said: “We have been invited by the ministry of education to be a part of the Swayam plus platform. What we are doing is directly linking the student to his education and learning and get direct employability. In collaboration with Times Pro we have also launched a hybrid learning programme.We allow students of any discipline to do the course and also provide the option to choose the location of the job. The best part is our courses are all industry related.”

Importance of micro-credentials

UGC chairman M Jagadesh Kumar elaborated, “Today we have the concept of micro-credentials. These are short-term knowledge acquiring processes where the courses are offered in terms of credit. One can acquire micro-credentials in different domains and become much more competent. There are so many organisations offering these micro-credentials and that is what we want to bring to the higher education institutions.”

Kumar added, “Nowadays it is not just about acquiring degrees, the focus is on acquiring skills and competency . Students should acquire credits from multidisciplinary areas of study, store them in the Academic Bank of Credit, and accumulate them. Students can simply acquire the credits and become employable.”

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