Opinion On IT4D 2016 by Manoj Shakya, Assistant Professor of Kathmandu University
IT4D, an international conference was recently completed successfully. IT4D is an annual conference, and the theme for this time was e-learning. The main objective was to create a platform for scholars, policy makers and development workers who would like to subsidize in the education sector with the means of e-learning. Presenters from different country presented their notions in the development of education by means of technology.
DWIT NEWS team had a conversation with one of the active members of this conference, Mr. Manoj Shakya, who by profession, is an Assistant Professor of Kathmandu University in Department of Computer Science and Engineering. Mr. Shakya has been involved in the teaching field for many years and always making his preeminent effort to provide best to his students.
As he is a regular participant from the very 1st session of IT4D conference, we asked him a few questions regarding the event.
What impression do you have about IT4D?
I must say that IT4D is a great event as this is the only conference that is being exclusively conducted by one private college, DWIT. In Nepal, Kathmandu University and Tribhuvan University do conduct such type of conferences but not any of the particular colleges have ever organized such international level conference till today. This is the only conference that has been conducted by one private college and I respect this.
How do you rank IT4D when you compare with other such conferences that are being conducted by KU and TU?
It is a great work on its own. However, if I have to compare with the other conferences that are being conducted by TU and KU, I can't rank IT4D above average as there are some major improvements that need to be done in order to raise its level. Yes, I am sure that it is better than the past two years and it will be upgraded further in coming years.
What is your role in the current session of IT4D? Do you have papers of your own to present?
Oh yes! I have many roles in the current IT4D conference. I am a committee member, author and an audience of this event. I have three papers where I was involved. Among them, paper with the title “Awareness of MOOC among College Students” is my own research paper where I have played the role of the first author. And in the remaining two papers, I have assisted my students of graduation level. As a committee member, I have been actively participating in the event from the very beginning.
How do you personally benefit from this event?
Such events are always productive for me and I always look for a chance to be a part of such events. Particularly talking about IT4D 2016, I get to know people whom I have never met before and increase the number of nodes in my network. For example, today I got the chance to meet Dr. Mahabir Pun and many people like him whom I had never met before. Another benefit is getting a chance to share my ideas with other appropriate people. Having ideas is not always a complete solution, our projects are complete only when we get to present our ideas in such event with many enthusiastic people. We get suggestions for our project and we learn from others’ project. It is one of the best places to learn and improve on one’s work. I had been working on my project but never had a chance to present it until today, which is where I personally benefited a lot.
How is IT4D 2016 different from IT4D 2015 and 2014?
IT4D 2016 has initiated some new ideas which uplift its quality from past year’s events. Some improvements include printing an abstract book which was not in the previous sessions. The theme of this year “e-learning” itself is great and the quality of papers has been improved as compared to past events but still needs a lot of improvement.
What improvement should next session of IT4D make?
In most of the international conferences, one important task is “peer review”. But we lack that here. The papers that are submitted are peer reviewed by experts before they are formally selected for the presentation. This technique would help in accumulating theme based, high quality, scope-oriented paper. Additionally, we should provide ISSN number so that it would be registered internationally.
How can we increase the number of participations in this event?
The more you advertise the more people get to know about it, so, marketing is obviously one of the best ways of increasing participation. And the next is, we need to conduct this with the collaboration of government; this would help in the success and popularity of IT4D.
It was great talking with Manoj Sir, thank you for your time.