NIHIL ULTRA: Nothing Beyond

Educational Multimedia Research Centre (EMMRC)



Like in the previous years EMMRC Kolkata, the only media centre hosted by an undergraduate college, played out its role as a significant player in the evolution of India's 'Knowledge Society' in the same robust manner it has always been known for.

Content creation at the centre and its dissemination through different platforms went on at a brisk pace-despite severe constraints of space and equipment.

In the year 2014, 140 ETV programmes have been produced and sent to CEC. The total duration was 61 hours 45 minutes. 138 of these are syllabus-based, relating to the subjects of Microbiology, Political Science, Mass Communication Video Production and Film Studies. 2 Enrichment programmes have also been produced.

Besides the ETV programmes, the centre has developed 197 e-contents based on the model syllabus prescribed UGC for undergraduate students of the disciplines mentioned above.

After completion of History courseware with 356 e-content modules under Phase I of NME-ICT, the centre had been pursuing e-content development on Political Science, Microbiology, Film Studies, Mass Communication Video Production and Rabindra Sangeet slated for Phase II. However, on special request from CEC e-content development on Microbiology has been shifted to Phase I. This necessitated a complete rescheduling of the centre's plans, including fast tracking of e-content development on Microbiology and putting on hold e-content development on the other four subjects.

Satisfactory progress having been made in the development of e-content on Microbiology, the centre is planning to resume development of e-content on the other four subjects soon, following guidelines on the basis of a revised DPR formulated for the execution of Phase II.

The EduSat platform has been utilized for uplinking 5 lectures on Impact of Globalization on Culture, as also for videoconferencing during the dedication of History e-content courseware to the Nation by the then Hon'ble Minister for HRD on 28th January 2014.

EMMRC Kolkata remains the only centre pursuing regional language telecast, with one weekly episode of 24-25 minutes' duration, which is telecast twice. Barnali, the Bengali bouquet of dubbed general-interest programmes from the CWCR archives, has been earning appreciation from all quarters, including UGC. Between January 2014 and December 2014, the centre has produced 47 Barnali episodes, with a duration of 18 hours and 43 minutes.

Research at this centre has always been given as much emphasis and priority as Production.

This year local surveys were launched to gauge the efficacy of the television lecture programmes as well as e-content on Microbiology syllabus, and interesting results were elicited. Both the versions received appreciation from the students and faculty alike as novel efforts. They agreed that content delivered through the TV lecture programmes were quite useful as audio-visual aids to classroom lectures. They also agreed that the e-content generated out of the lectures were not only more attractive and useful than textbooks but also very useful learning tools compatible with the students' prevalent inclination towards and familiarity with multimedia.

Based on response received from the students, we have decided to make use of social media in creating a platform for interaction with our target audience.

In 2014, two of our programmes have received awards. The programme, Majuli: a unique cultural landscape, produced by Someswar Bhowmik, was adjudged the best film in the Culture & Heritage section of the Woodpecker Film Festival 2013 (Delhi, held in January 2014). Another programme, Frozen History, produced by Sabuj Konar, was awarded the Special Jury Prize under Open Category in the iLead o Scope Festival 2014 (Kolkata).

In the last Prakriti Festival at Calicut (held in January 2014), the centre's programme Prayas: the one rupee revolution, produced by Moasunep Kichu, created a strong impact. Students attending the festival were so inspired by it that several of them committed during the post-show interaction, that they would engage themselves in similar activities in right earnest. Although the festival is non-competitive, such spontaneous enthusiasm of young minds is an invaluable reward that far outweighs any award.

But even more rewarding is the news that EMMRC Kolkata is nearing its dream of functioning from its own building. The host institution, St. Xavier's College (Autonomous), is constructing a new building for the centre as per provisions of the tripartite MOU signed in 1995, despite its modest resources as an undergraduate institution. The civil works are almost complete. The centre is simultaneously aspiring for an upgradation of facilities at the new building - especially with a new, up-to-date production set-up. The detailed proposal submitted by the centre in this respect is under active consideration of UGC. We are looking forward to an inauguration of the new premises sometime in 2015.

Visit EMMRC website, for further details