Indira Gandhi National Open University is a national university with its headquarters in New Delhi, Delhi, India. Named after former Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi, the university was established in 1985 when the Parliament of India passed the Indira Gandhi National Open University Act, 1985 (IGNOU Act 1985) The University has, in a relatively short time, contributed significantly to higher education, community education and continuing professional development
IGNOU, one of the largest universities in the world. It was founded to impart education by means of distance and open education, provide higher education opportunities particularly to the disadvantaged segments of society, to encourage, coordinate and set standards for distance and open education in India and strengthen the human resources of India through education. Apart from teaching and research, extension and training form the mainstay of its academic activities. It also acts as a national resource centre and serves to promote and maintain standards of distance education in India. IGNOU hosts the Secretariats of the SAARC Consortium on Open and Distance Learning (SACODiL) and the Global Mega Universities Network (GMUNET) initially supported by UNESCO. The University is committed to quality in teaching, research, training and extension activities, and acts as a national resource centre for expertise and infrastructure in the ODL (open and distance learning) system.
At present, there are 22 Schools of Study. These schools are responsible for all the academic programmes and courses.
1. School of Humanities
2. School of Social Sciences
3. School of Sciences
4. School of Education
5. School of Continuing Education
6. School of Engineering & Technology
7. School of Management Studies
8. School of Health Sciences
9. School of Computer & Information Sciences
10. School of Agriculture
11. School of Law
12. School of Journalism and New Media Studies
13. School of Gender and Development Studies
14. School of Tourism Hospitality Service Sectoral Management
15. School of Interdisciplinary and Trans-disciplinary Studies
16. School of Social Work
17. School of Vocational Education and Training
18. School of Extension and Development Studies
19. School of Foreign Languages
20. School of Translation Studies and Training
21. School of Performing and Visual Arts
22. School of Computer and designing
The Indira Gandhi National Open University has the following Eleven Divisions to take care of various activities.
- Academic and Coordination Division
- Administrative Division
- Construction and Maintenance
- Computer Division
- Finance and Accounts Division
- International Division
- Library and Documentation Division
- Material Production and Distribution
- Planning and Development Division
- Regional Services Division
- Student Registration and Evaluation
- Advanced Centre for Informatics and Innovative Learning
- Centre for Extension Education (CEE)
- Centre for Corporate Education, Training & Consultancy
- Distance Education Council
- Electronic Media Production Centre (EMPC)
- Indira Gandhi Centre for Freedom Struggle Studies
- Inter-university Consortium for Technology-enabled Flexible Education and Development (IUC-TEFED)
- National Centre for Disability Studies
- National Centre for Innovation in Distance Education
- Staff Training and Research Institute of Distance Education
Instructional System - The University provides multi-channel, multiple media teaching-learning packages for instruction and self-learning. The different components used for teaching/ learning include self-instructional print and audio-video materials, radio and television broadcasts, face-to-face teleconferencing, video conferencing, interactive radio counselling, interactive multimedia CD-ROM and Internet-based learning, and the use of mobile phones for instant messaging.
Evaluation System - At IGNOU, a three-tier system of evaluation is followed:
- Self-evaluation, through devices built into the course material
- Continuous evaluation, through any combination of theory-based assignments, practical assignments, log books and contact programmes
- Term-end evaluation, through examinations, which are conducted at more than 600 centres all over the country and overseas twice a year, in June and December. In the case of programmes with a project component, the evaluation methodology also includes a viva-voce.
E-Gyan Kosh - IGNOU initiated the development of a knowledge repository in October 2005, to store, index, preserve, distribute and share the digital learning resources developed by the ODL institutions in the country. This is named e-Gyan Kosh (www.egyankosh.ac.in). Today e-Gyankosh has emerged as one of the world’s largest educational resource repositories. Over 95% of the self-instructional print material (26,000 volumes) of IGNOU has already been digitised and uploaded on the repository. Over 16,000 video programmes are being provided through a special channel of IGNOU in YouTube with the metadata link in the repository. The repository also has a wiki for collaborative content generation and a blog for discussion on various issues, share ideas and thoughts. Live educational programmes are available through the webcasting platform (www.ignouonline.ac.in/ Broadcast), which at present provides access to broadcast channels Gyan Darshan-1, Gyan Darshan-2 simulcasted with Edusat, and Gyan Vani (Delhi).
Hostels - Separate Hostel for Girls and boys are provided with adequate toilet and wash facilities. There are facilities for drinking water, indoor games, recreation like T.V./ Video etc. in the hostel. The facility is also provided for receiving telephone calls in the Hostel.
Computer Division - This division, based at the headquarters, caters to IT requirements of the whole University. All the three tiers of the University, i.e., the Headquarters at the main campus in Maidan Garhi (New Delhi), the countrywide Regional Centres, and the learner support centres all over the country and abroad are provided services through this division, even in virtual mode through the IGNOU website. The campus LAN consists of about 35 LANs covering the various buildings of the campus. This network is also supported by Wi-Fi wireless connectivity at select places, which is maintained by the Computer Division.
The Public Information Unit - PIU acts as a bridge between the public and the IGNOU. A major activity of the unit is the dissemination of information about the activities. and programmes of the University. It reaches out to the prospective students of the University by providing information about the academic programmes run by the Schools of Study, the instructional systems and admission procedures. The PIU helps in image building of the University and also handles media queries.
Campus Placement Cell - The mission and endeavour of Campus Placement Cell have been to enhance and facilitate the process of gainful employment of its divergent and distributed learner population while pursuing various programmes. Job aspiring students approach CPC to seek advice and assistance for entry-level jobs as well mid-career level employment opportunities matching and commensurate with their personal and academic profiles.
Student Grievance Cell - The division has established the Grievance Cell to redress grievances received from the students. The cell received 8738 complaints from the students, during the period March to December 2008. Research Cell The Research Cell was established in January 2008, to study the student profile across the programmes and to analyse their performance in examinations. The Cell brings out these studies from time to time.
Student Services Centre - Student Services Centre (SSC) operating from the headquarters of IGNOU is the nodal centre in respect of providing learner support services to all IGNOU learners across the country. The Centre provides information and counselling on various programmes and courses of study to the prospective learners. It also redresses the students’ grievances such as non-receipt of letters confirming admission in the academic programme, non-receipt of study material, non-receipt of admit card for appearing in the term-end examination, non-declaration of results of the term-end examination, non-inclusion of marks / grades of the assignments and projects in the grade cards, change in the address, change in the study centre, change in the medium of instruction etc.
Library and Documentation Division - This division is responsible for developing and maintaining the library system of IGNOU, which comprises the Central Library at the headquarters and libraries at the Regional Centers (RCs) and learner support centres (LSCs). The Central Library caters to the needs of academics, administrative and support staff at the Headquarters. The RC Libraries take care of the library requirements of staff, academic counsellors, and academic coordinators. The SC Libraries are primarily meant for students.
Vigilance Cell - Indira Gandhi National Open University was one of the first educational institutions of higher learning to adopt the jurisdiction of the Central Vigilance Commission. The Vigilance Cell, established in 1998, is headed by the part-time Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO). The CVO advises the Vice-Chancellor on vigilance complaints concerning the University teachers, academics, officers and staff to ensure probity and integrity in public administration. This cell exercises vigilance on corruption and unethical practices.