Express News Service
CHENNAI: If you are from outside Tamil Nadu struggling to understand the local language, University of Madras is extending you a helping hand. The university’s Institute of Distance Education (IDE) is planning to start a Spoken Tamil certificate course.
Last year, a few nationalized banks approached the university to train its non-Tamil speaking employees in the language to help them interact with their customers better. Accepting the request, IDE, on a pilot basis, designed a module and imparted online spoken Tamil classes to bank employees. It was an instant hit.
Since last year, two batches of bank employees have been trained in ‘Spoken Skills in Tamil’. Sources said the institute has been receiving inquiries from a few other banks and railways to train workers who can’t understand Tamil.
IDE director K Ravichandran said ‘Spoken Skills in Tamil’ course module comprises of 15 sessions of 1.5-hour duration each. “The online classes were conducted on weekends and resource persons from the university, well-versed in Hindi and Tamil, imparted lessons to bank employees. We had also roped in a few retired bank employees, who are good in both languages, to conduct classes as they will be able to teach banking-related terms used on a daily basis,” he said.
The director said the institute is also planning to roll out short-duration certificate course, and is likely to seek UGC nod soon. Meanwhile, Vice-Chancellor of University of Madras S Gowri said she plans to start a ‘Spoken English’ course for government school students free of cost. “When government school students enrol in professional courses they face problems in understanding English.”We can provide a bridge course to such students,” he added.