The Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management Kerala (IIITM-K), the premier institute offering courses in cutting edge technologies, was upgraded to the digital university through an ordinance in January. Making it India’s first digital university.
There has been an overwhelming response since the admissions to India’s first digital university, Kerala University of Digital Sciences, Innovation and Technology, opened here despite COVID-19.
According to sources at the Digital University Kerala (DUK), the call for admissions to its 30 PhD vacancies received nearly 500 applications in the midst of a raging pandemic that disrupted higher education.
The Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management Kerala (IIITM-K), a premier institute offering courses in cutting edge technologies, has been upgraded to a digital university by an ordinance enacted in January.
It will be the first academic program at the DUK, they said.
In addition to the regular PhD, a new option – Industry Regular PhD – also attracted many candidates. As part of the unique ‘Industry Regular’ programme, which primarily utilises the expertise of industry and academia, candidates can propose their workplace or an industry research lab for their PhD, they said.
Scholars will work with industry mentors to solve a real-world problem, which should make it easier for IT professionals to pursue doctoral degrees, without taking a break from work.
The popularity for the doctoral programmes at DUKs is due to the unique topics they offer, such as AI Robotics, Computational Intelligence, Computational Imaging Systems and so forth.
259 candidates chose regular PhD programs while 169 chose part-time programs out of the total 442 applications to its four Schools.
According to a top official, the application process for doctoral programs began on May 3.
“We have received a good response to the PhD programme, showing the growing demand for research in the field of digital technologies,” said vice chancellor Dr Saji Gopinath of Digital University of Kerala.
“Digital University of Kerala has expertise and is offering research opportunities in several emerging fields, now since it has become India’s first digital university, the expectations are higher.” he said.
Vice Chancellor also said that Kerala is aspiring to be a knowledge-based society and needs more talents who are capable of producing knowledge-based products and services.
Next week, PhD candidates will undergo interviews in preparation for the start of the program in August.
The university also plans to start its flagship MSc and MTech programmes in August.
DUK’s MTech courses differ from the usual stream by offering specialised courses in contemporary topics like Artificial Intelligence (AI), AI Hardware, Cyber Security Engineering, Cyber-Physical Systems and Signal Processing, and Connected Systems and Intelligence.
The huge demand for qualified candidates with academic and practical knowledge in the latest technologies will be met through MSc programmes in AI, Cognitive Sciences, Cyber Security, Ecological Informatics, Computational Economics and Computational Social Science (focus on AI, Data and Society) indicate university sources.