University of Calcutta

INSTITUTE OF RADIO PHYSICS AND ELECTRONICS (IRPE)

UGC NETWORKING RESOURCE CENTRE IN PHYSICAL SCIENCES

3 Day Workshop TEACHING OF ELECTRONICS IN COLLEGES
Scottish Church College, Kolkata
November 6-8, 2009

About The School

One of the activities pledged to be undertaken by the UGC-NRCPS is to adopt one or two colleges and to help the faculties and students to augment the academic cum research activities of the adopted colleges.

The UGC-NRCPS in the CAS in Radio Physics and Electronics (RPE), after careful considerations, decided to start a dialogue with the Physics Department of the Scottish Church College (SCC), an old institution in India (established in 1830). The College has been awarded the status “College with Potential for Excellence” by the UGC. After a few round of discussions between the faculties of RPE and of the Physics Department of SCC, the areas of collaboration were identified. The program was then approved by the Principal of SCC and the Department of RPE and the final terms of agreement was submitted to the Vice Chancellor and Syndicate of the University of Calcutta.

It was decided that as a first step of collaboration a joint Workshop should be organized on a common area of interest to both the institutions. In choosing the theme the organizing committee considered the expertise of the teachers of RPE in Electronics and also took note that some misconception prevails amongst the mind of college students about the coverage of the subject. It was decided that the workshop should be based on a theme that might impress upon the students, mostly 2nd year Physics Honours students, that electronics is not devoid of fundamental physics, covers interdisciplinary areas and at the same time has tremendous application potentials. The topics covered are listed elsewhere in this report.

The dates of the Workshop were chosen to coincide with the Reunion of the past and present students of the Physics Department of SCC.

Inaugural Function

The Inaugural Program was held at the Urquhart Lecture Hall, with the Principal of SCC, Dr. John Abraham in the Chair, who gave a welcome address. Prof. G. Ghosh, Head of the Department of RPE, narrated the history of the department and its glorious past and present achievements. Prof. P K Basu, Director-UGC-NRCPS, apprised the audience of the activities of the Centre and of the genesis of the program. Prof. Susanta Sen, Dean (Technology) of CU and an alumnus of SCC, outlined the course structure and purpose of holding such training. Prof. K. Pal, President of Alumni Association described the activities of the Association and its involvement in the program and Sri R. Roy, another ex-student informed students how his training in Physics helped him develop innovative methods in bank accounting. Prof. U. Nandi moved a vote of thanks.

PROGRAM

The program included both theoretical lectures and hands-on-training. The resource persons were derived from both the departments. The following programme outlines the topics covered, the speakers and their affiliations. Student volunteers from the Dept of RPE helped the faculties in conducting the practical work. In all lectures and practical training pedagogy was given the top priority, in view of the fact that all the students had just entered their 2nd year class and subjects like Quantum Mechanics and Statistical Mechanics are unknown to them. All the speakers employed animation in their power-point presentations, used analogies and practical examples to illustrate their presentations.

Feedback from Participants

All the theoretical lectures were highly interactive. The resource persons made it clear that the participants could interrupt them at any time to get things clarified and/or to make further enquiries. There had been overwhelming number of questions. Even the students queued up to ask questions during tea and lunch breaks. Some topics, notably, Quantum Mechanics, needed more time, since that formed the basis for understanding band structure, transport and other properties of semiconductor materials.
The hands-on-training in the laboratory was extremely useful.

Photos

Selection of Candidates

The submitted registration forms were examined and a list of selected fellows was published in the website to enable them to reserve train/air tickets. Due consideration was given to select participants from all over India and to give preference to candidates from North Eastern regions. The following Table may provide an idea how the objective was fulfilled.