Bennett University’s ‘Bennett Brewings’ event with Dr. Anant Agarwal


16th Feb, 2016, Delhi: Bennett University held the second session in its ongoing ‘Bennett Brewings’ series on 16 February at Delhi’s Taj Palace Hotel. The speaker at this session was Dr. Anant Agarwal Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT and CEO of edX, an online learning destination founded by Harvard and MIT. He is also a member of Bennett University’s International Advisory Council (or IAC), which is composed of educationists, corporate leaders and creative visionaries. The participants in the session included select invitees from the corporate world including many CXOs and HR Heads of leading NCR based corporates.

In keeping with the composition of the audience, the focus of the discussion was on the evolution of corporate education. Dr. Agarwal discussed how effective education is moving towards models of confluence through blended learning. Techniques such as cloud computing, video distribution, social media and gamification have led to this explosion of online and blended learning, taking education to the people rather than the other way around.

He also spoke about studies showing that blended learning can give better results than regular classrooms and how industry and academia are partnering for developing online and blended learning for up-skilling and re-skilling of the workforce. Many industry accredited courses are also under development. According to him “academia needs to engage with industry, as part of understanding and getting feedback on revolutionary new ways of teaching and learning and the new-age credentials of micro courses”. On the association between edX and Bennett University, Dr. Agarwal said “edX is collaborating with Bennett to help create a University that is very innovative and grounds-up, incorporating the best of technology in education”.

University Vice Chancellor Yaj Medury said with the edX partnership, it didn’t make sense to re-create content already available from top faculty. “We will ask students to take some of the relevant courses and the exam from edX and show the certificate and earn credits. At least 8-15% courses will be conducted online. The extra time will be utilized to engage in other academic activities and group discussions that are currently missing in Indian higher education.”

The evening ended with cocktails and a networking dinner where the participants arrived on the discussion over the future of corporate education.