Azim Premji University has launched schoolbook archive collection

The archive collection now contains over 5600 school books and school book related materials from India and other South Asian countries for over 200 years.

Schoolbook Archive, an open-access digital archive of schoolbooks is being published by Azim Premji University in Bangalore today at 2.30 pm. The schoolbook archive can be accessed on the university website. It currently has over 5600 school books and school book related materials from India and other countries in South Asia for over 200 years.

The release event will be held at 2.30 pm on the new campus, Bikkanahalli Road, Sarjapura and will also be streamed live on YouTube. Anurag Behar, Vice-Chancellor of Azim Premji University, will launch the archive and make it available to the public. Reshmi Mitra, Knowledge Resource Center, Azim Premji University will present objectives, content and ways to access and use schoolbook archives. A panel discussion on “200 Years Journey through Schoolbook in Indian Education” will be conducted by Professor Sharmadip Bose of Azim Premji University’s School of Arts and Sciences. Among the panelists are education expert, Janaki Nair, retired professor of history, Jawaharlal Nehru University and visiting professor, Azim Premji University, Rimli Bhattacharya, professor, professor of English, University of Delhi and K. Subramanian, professor, Homi Vavata Center for Of Fundamental Research, Mumbai and Varadarajan Narayanan, Professor, School of Education, Azim Premji University.

Target users: The schoolbook archive is designed to meet the perceived needs of historically located documents and teaching-learning resources that can be used by teachers and educators, curriculum and textbook developers, textbook illustrators and designers, various aspects of education and historians of educational institutions. And historians of print, language, and script among others in their work. It is also of interest to all citizens to invest in envisioning and implementing a just, equitable, humane and sustainable society for present and future generations of students through our education system.

Distinctive features: The schoolbook archive is a mere repository – not meant to be physical or digital. It distinguishes itself in the following ways –

  • The term schoolbook is understood in a broad sense and is illustrated by the range of content we would like to collect and make available through the portal.
  • The digital archive complements the actual collection of these resources at the Azim Premji University Library in Bangalore as well as the Azim Premji Foundation Library located in 153 block level teaching learning centers in seven states of India.
  • The items hosted on the portal carry a brief description and discuss the trends and structures used to produce school books during that time.
  • The portal is designed to be collaborative. Users can add to these notes and post comments for each item and thus enrich the notes. They may also rate individual resources to the user in terms of their usefulness.
  • The portal hosts webinars and interviews with individuals who are actively involved in creating schoolbooks for use in Indian schools, as well as researchers who have explored various aspects of school book production and use.
  • It contains a separate section on bibliography of school books used in India.
  • With a strong India and South Asian focus, Archives aims to expand its collection over time to explore the resources used for world-class school education with special interest in countries emphasizing public education.

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