India, Musings

IITs and their branches

Before my son entered IIT, we were doing a lot of research on the various IITs and their branches. While the choice of IITs was relatively simpler, the selection of the branch in the different IITs was a whole lot harder. Each IIT had a slightly different set of branches and we had lots and lots of homework to do to understand the whole process better.

We as parents understood the traditional Engineering branches like:

  1. Civil
  2. Mechanical
  3. Electronics and communication
  4. Electrical and Electronics
  5. Computer Science and Engineering
  6. Metallurgy
  7. Textiles
  8. Chemical

branches

But the IITs boasted of some new branches along with the traditional ones to keep up with the changing trends in technologies. These were the new branches that really made us research more:

  1. Engineering Physics
  2. Data Science engineering
  3. Mathematics and computing
  4. Agricultural and food engineering
  5. Mining engineering
  6. Manufacturing science and engineering
  7. Ocean engineering and Naval architecture
  8. Engineering science
  9. Artificial intelligence
  10. Bioengineering
  11. Biological sciences and Bioengineering
  12. Material science and engineering
  13. Polymer science and engineering
  14. Mineral engineering
  15. Petroleum engineering
  16. Ceramic engineering
  17. Pharmaceutical engineering and technology

Note, that – not all branches are available in all the IITs. For example, as of today, ‘Data science’ is offered only in IIT, Mandi and ‘Artificial Intelligence’ is available only in IIT Hyderabad.

It is also important to note that these are all 4 year B.Tech programs. There are 5 year dual degree and 4 year BS programs as well.

I am sure you are also stumped by the other branches such as “Ceramic engineering”, “Polymer engineering”, ‘Engineering Physics’, ‘Mathematics and Computing’ and many others. Yes, these branches do exist in some of the IITs!! While I haven’t researched the scope of all the branches – we did have to research two branches (‘Engineering Physics’ and ‘Mathematics and Computing’ )since they were close to my son’s line of interest(after Computer Science and other heavily fought traditional branches, which we couldn’t get our hands on)

What were they taught? And what was their scope in the future?

What is Engineering Physics?

From the IIT Bombay website, ‘Engineering Physics’ is “an amalgam of physics, mathematics and electrical engineering courses”. The core courses cover basic areas such as classical and quantum mechanics, electromagnetic theory, photonics, relativity, and thermodynamics along with introductory courses to the various fields.The courses include Mathematical physics, nuclear physics, Quantum physics, laser physics and more.

So, it is Physics, Physics all the way… ๐Ÿ™‚

It is offered by IIT – B(Bombay), IIT-M(Madras), IIT-D(Delhi), IIT-R(Roorkee), IIT -G(Guwahati), IIT – H(Hyderabad), IIT – M(Mandi) and IIT – Dhanbad

With so much of Physics in their curriculum, what is the scope of Engineering Physics students in the future? These are a few of my findings:

  1. Students can get placed in industries such as telecom, microelectronics, lasers and micro devices etc. with amazing salaries
  2. They can also get involved in research and development activities in future
  3. They can opt for higher studies in the same line or
  4. They can also choose an entirely new line of interest

What is ‘Mathematics and computing’?

While I was mulling ‘Mathematics and Computing’ branch I found that it is very,very difficult to get into ‘Mathematics and Computing’ branch in the traditional old IITs.

The ‘Mathematics and Computing’ branch is described by IIT Guwahati website as follows:

“The curriculum for this program is designed to meet the need of sophisticated mathematics in modern scientific investigations and technological innovations. The programme has three components: mathematics, computing and financial engineering which are perfectly blended so that the strong mathematical and analytical components that are in-built in the curriculum form the basis on which the technological aspects of computing and finance are developed”.

The MnC(Mathematics and Computing) branch syllabus however is also supposedly different for each IIT. While many IITs focus on Math – some focus on Computer Science concepts too.

MnC is offered byย  IIT-D, IIT-G, IIT-Kharagpur, IIT – Dhanbad, IIT – Hyderabad, IIT-BHU – Varanasi, IIT – Ropar and IIT Goa.

Scope of Mathematics and computing:

  1. These students have a bright future in computational careers which involve data science, statistics, machine learning, Artificial intelligence
  2. They can also opt for higher studies
  3. Many of these students have also been hired by companies such as Microsoft, Netapp, Zynga and more

Hope you liked the details of various branches in the IITs and the extra detail about the ‘Engineering physics’ branch and ‘Mathematics and Computing’ branch.

Stay tuned for more of my personal musings! ๐Ÿ™‚

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India, Musings

Realities of life in India!!

Yes, this is another post about the ‘Realities of life in…India’ not ‘USA’… ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ This post is mostly applicable mostly for families, individuals, couples who return after a foreign visit that lasts for 2+ years or more…so here goes…

  1. We are warmly greeted by “Sirs” and “Madams” in our personal and work environments…I was pleasantly thrown off by this sudden respect…(I did not know what to think of it initially – except,”Please,please don’t call me “Mam” – I don’t mind being called by my first name, however older I maybe to you” ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ !!) In India, I had forgotten, if somebody was older to you even by two years, we automatically became “Mam” and “Sir”!! Luckily, most of my remote acquaintances have only called me as “Jayanthi”…
  2. Remember the “loneliness” that I had written about in my US-India posts? There is nothing like that here… we have friends from our school days, friends from our college days and more friends and still more friends and counting…:) And in a city like Bangalore which has a constantly moving population, the friends circle only grows all the time…and no shortage of family too… So, none of the loneliness business – if at all, we are swimming in a sea of humanity all the time which is lovely!!
  3. As I see it, most of us in India do very well financially and personally too…if at all, the only hitch might be too many people trying to influence others decisions. So, anybody going to the US or other foreign countries for better financial prospects – not to worry – life is good here!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ( for the middle and upper middle class)
  4. India, as I have observed after my US stay has a highly dependent culture. From the time we are young, children are dependent on parents and later in life, parents are dependent on children(again, no right or wrong here – just prefer the “independent” system so that we don’t stress the relationships around us) Consider these points:

a. In the US, children as young as nine months are taught to feed themselves and by the first year, they are eating independently with no help from parents. Contrast that to the Indian culture, where parents are continuously running behind the children with a bowl and spoon in hand helping them eat!!

tea-plantation-2220475_1920.jpg

b. This continues to teenage years and beyond. As young teenagers, their Western counterparts are encouraged to step out of the house and start working at restaurants to understand the value of money. Is this even a feasible thought in Indian culture??(Plus,ย  it is absolutely unnecessary too – but there goes our independent thought!!)

c. Parents in the US are also encouraged to start planning for a child’s college education from the time they are born. Working professionals are encouraged to start saving for retirement once they start working, buy a house and finish paying the mortgage by the time they retire. This ensures that the child becomes independent when they enter college. Adults are independent and have enough money and own the house when they retire too!!

I am sure all this is prevalent in India of today – but up to what extent it is being done(or can be done) in India is highly debated…

d. Who can forget the maids, drivers, baby sitters, cooks of India? Every family’s routine relies heavily on the maids of India. We are heavily dependent on them for our daily chores and life is not same even if they are ‘off’ for a day… ๐Ÿ˜‰

5. Children grow more naturally and are not confused about which way to go – the Indian way or the Western way or grasp both ways…

6. I cannot resist saying this again – but just the freedom to be able to work or study or do what you to do in life without visa restrictions is indeed a huge blessing! I feel for all the women or spouses on H4 visas(H4 visa holders cannot work) who are languishing their lives abroad with fantastic degrees and not being able to put it to good use…

7. In India, we are not the first to receive the cutting edge tech products(like the latest iPhone or the latest iPad) but it does come to us eventually! ๐Ÿ™‚

8. Inter-caste and inter-religion marriages are better accepted now… I cannot imagine such a thing some 20 years ago…

9. India has a much more disciplined and meticulous life. I don’t think I have seen anybody coloring their hair, have interesting hair styles, wear different types of attire to school. Having a school uniform regulates a lot of things for school going kids. Women might try different attires but only in a city like Bangalore or other bigger cities – the smaller tier 1 and tier 2 cities expects women to be fully clad…

10. Engineering and medicine are still the most sought after professions in India! And getting into IIT is still the greatest dream of every Indian parent!!

11. And last but not least, cities like Bangalore, Hyderabad have considerable number ofย  children born in the US. These children have returned back to India with their parents and there are plenty of schools that accommodate them. Even colleges have a separate category on their forms for children born abroad – “OCI”!! So it is all not only “brain drain” …the reality is that there are parents who have decided to come to India for goodย  and India loves to accommodate these returnees!!

Cheers!