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India unveils free digital learning platform

Over the past year, the Directorate General of Training (DGT) has collaborated with leading players in the industry to increase the digital literacy rate across the country.

The government partnered with the private sector to create the e-learning initiatives, SkillsBuild Reignite and the SkillsBuild Innovation Camp.

The organisation has committed to providing multifaceted digital skill training in cloud computing and artificial intelligence (AI) to students and trainers in National Skill Training Institutes (NSTIs) and Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs).

According to the India Skill Report (2019), only 45.6% of the youth graduating from educational institutions are employable.

DGT, under the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE), is responsible for implementing long-term institutional training to the nation’s youth, through its network of training institutes and infrastructure.

As per recent analyses, the rate of digital evolution is outpacing the rate of digital adoption. Young learners need specialised skillsets to work with advanced technologies. Hence, the DGT is focused on creating opportunities for AI, big data, 3D-technology, cloud computing, and cybersecurity.

SkillsBuild Reignite

This programme intends to provide access to free online coursework and mentoring support. It is designed to help entrepreneurs and jobseekers reinvent their careers and businesses.

Individual business owners can tap into a host of industry-relevant content on topics including AI, cloud, data analytics, and security to reskill and upskill themselves.

One of the platform’s key features is personalised coaching for entrepreneurs seeking help to establish or restart their small businesses, coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Courses for small business owners include financial management, business strategies, digital strategies, and legal support and more.

Also, industry volunteers will serve as mentors to some of the 30,000 SkillsBuild users in 100 communities in at least five major regions worldwide to help reinvigorate local communities.

The SkillsBuild Innovation Camp

The camp is a 10-week program which supports 100 hours of structured learning for clients interested in gaining hands-on project experience to enhance learning and are intent on building their network and enhance their employability.

With the guidance of expert facilitators, volunteers, and coaches, the students will be guided through the design thinking process and learn strategic methods to craft their problem statement, ideate creatively, solve complex problems more quickly, and design an innovative user experience.

The SkillsBuild Innovation Camp concludes with a pitch to facilitators, other teams, stakeholders, and potential employers or investors.

In November 2019, a public-private sector collaboration made the SkillsBuild online learning platform available for Indian students through another DGT e-learning platform, BharatSkills.

Digital classrooms on this platform are available to students and instructors from ITIs and the technical education ecosystem in India.

Within the first six weeks of its deployment in the country, the platform benefited 4,700 motivated learners from 15 states and union territories who have been able to continue their learning despite lockdowns and restrictions.

It currently has impacted 14,135 learners who have completed 40,000 of courses and 77,000 hours of e-learning.

SkillsBuild has been rated as India’s top ten online learning platform by the National Skills Network.

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