How IIT Chicago is revolutionizing learning by transforming India’s EdTech sector

The University offers online degree programs at just 33 per cent cost of the total on-campus tuition fee along with the exact same curriculum as the on-campus students

Technology impacts every facet of contemporary life, but the education sector lags in adopting tools that could revolutionize learning. However, the Universities like the USA’s Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT), Chicago are quite progressive and way ahead of the times.

At the present times, when just 3 per cent of global education expenditure goes towards technology, filling the gap in India are Universities like IIT Chicago, which blend education and technology to suit the Indian context and the community of learners, especial students and working professionals.

From homework management to online curricula and worker upskilling, the tech-focussed University is trying to transform the classroom for learners at every stage of education.

Providing UG, Masters and even PhD programs, the university is especially becoming a favourite among working professionals due to the versatility of the programs offered.

The best thing about its online degree programs is that real classroom video lectures (recorded classes) are provided to the students, who can watch them as per their convenience and even multiple times. However, they complete their degree at the same pace as the on-campus students.

“They get the same project work, same assignments, appear in exams on the same date as do the on-campus students. Even they receive the exact same degree certificate but at just 33 per cent cost of the total tuition fee charged for the on-campus degree programs,” says Mr Sri Kumar Panyam, Director India Operations, Illinois Institute of Technology, adding, “The significant difference in fee is what makes the online degree program lucrative for Indian students, especially the working professionals.”

Given that fact that the university provides three modes of study (on campus, online in India and hybrid mode of study), working professionals are provided the option to switch from online mode to on-campus mode, in case they are transferred to the US.

How IIT Chicago is revolutionizing learning by transforming India’s EdTech sector
Sri Kumar Panyam, Director India Operations, Illinois Institute of Technology

Interestingly, the GRE and GMAT tests have been done away with, keeping the pandemic crisis into consideration. Also, the absence of TOEFL or IELTS tests has made the online degree programs of Illinois Tech more lucrative.

That’s not all. Those learners who complete their online degree programs from Illinois Tech are deemed as American graduates who become eligible for a H1B Visa under American Graduate Pool quota. Every year, the number of visa applicants under the American Graduate Pool quota are very less compared to the general quota.

Although, the programs are quite attractive but it is certainly not only about the costs. The phenomenal and strong alumni network of the university is something that makes it stand out.

Speaking about the same, Sri Kumar Panyam, who is also the chief mentor of Indian Students Association in Chicago, says, “We prepare students for professions that require technological sophistication, innovative mindset and entrepreneurial spirit. From magnetic tapes, cell phones, bar code technology to Pentium4 chip, Amazon Alexa and Bira91 Beer, the inventions and innovations of our alumni have changed the course of human history.”

Some of the famous names from India, who happened to study from Illinois Tech, are Rajeev Chandrasekhar (MP from Bangalore), Jamshyd Godrej (Managing Director of Godrej & Boyce), Sanjay Kirloskar (Chairman of Kirloskar Brothers Ltd), GV Prasad (Co-chairman and Managing Director of Dr Reddy’s) and N. Srinivasan (Managing Director of India Cements and owner of Chennai Super Kings).

The list is too long but to specify, almost 75,000 world renowned businessmen, industrialists and others have completed their education from the international university, which speaks about the quality of education on offer.

With two annual intakes, in January (Spring Intake) and August (Fall Intake), this world-class university has established three registered offices in India. Mr Sri Kumar Panyam, along with his team, provide free services including assistance right from the admission and throughout the program at these offices.

Associated with the university from the last six years, Mr Sri Kumar has been interacting with the parents as well as enrolled students. He has also managed to create a useful parent network successfully.

It is pertinent to mention that Illinois Institute of Technology, commonly known as Illinois Tech is a private, independent, not-for-profit university based in Chicago with programs in Engineering, Science, Architecture, Business, Law, Design, Human Sciences, and Applied Technology.

Created in 1890 by the merger of Armour Institute and Lewis Institute, Illinois Tech forayed into India in 1997 when it set up its wholly-owned subsidiary in India – Illinois Institute of Technology (India) Pvt Ltd (IIT IPL), to provide quality Masters and Certificate Education to thousands of working professionals at a subsidized cost. The aim was to provide quality education to people who cannot manage to undertake a fulltime programme in the US. Students who wish to switch to the reputed international university for their higher studies and working professionals who want to upgrade their skills while keeping their job intact can take advantage of this splendid opportunity by visiting the official website

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