Entering bedrooms to make science exciting to students

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New Delhi: In an effort to draw the best talent to science, the Indian government has come up with an “innovative” way to reach out to students by “entering the bedroom” to make science exciting.

“We are entering the bedroom by making science exciting to parents and students,” Science and Technology Minister Prithviraj Chavan said Thursday after releasing a 10-part serial on making science popular among students and parents.

“We want best students to pursue science and this is an innovative way to reach out to students,” Chavan said. The serial will go on air on the National Geographic channel from Feb 8 and after that it will be aired on Doordarshan and many regional channels. Initially, the science series will go on air in Hindi and English. Later, it will be translated into seven regional languages, including Marathi, Bengali, Telugu and Tamil.

The effort is made as the ministry found that there is a 30 percent drop in the students’ interest in pure science. “The decade 2010-2020 has been declared as innovation decade. We as a country want brightest students in science to do innovation and make the country a developed nation,” the minister added.

“Science has come to be regarded as one of the most powerful instruments of growth and development, especially for an emerging economy like ours. As already announced, we are giving scholarship to 250,000 students at high school level and if 30 percent of them even pursue science at higher level, we will have a great pool of innovators,” Chavan added.

“This is a popular way to convince students and their parents. We want best students in laboratories,” said Samir Bhramhachari, director general of Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), the top science research body of India.

The TV series, ‘Science Mein Twist’ produced by National Geographic, attempts to make science exciting and accessible for school kids to encourage them to pursue science as a career.

It is an attempt to make science stimulating and interesting. It covers topics from space to genetics to geo-science to excite children into exploring career options in science, explained Rajesh Sheshadri, senior vice president of the National Geographic.

According to a government survey, students seem less inclined towards pursuing pure science when it comes to higher degrees. At the class six to eight level, 22 percent say they would like to study science but this number drops to 13 percent among students of classes 11 and 12.


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