Learn Sanskrit with IT tools at UoH

Our Bureau Hyderabad | Updated on October 23, 2021

The University of Hyderabad (UoH) has launched a first of its kind online interdisciplinary programme which aims at teaching Sanskrit with the help of computer tools.

The goal of this course, christened as OE102: Samsaadhanii Praveshika, is to develop a confidence in the minds of the student that with the help of these computational tools they can understand any Sanskrit text with some effort.

The Department of Sanskrit Studies, since its inception in 2006, is engaged in the study of Indian Grammatical Theories with a computational perspective. “On the one hand we are looking at how to leverage computer technology to overcome the language barrier, how to reduce the time to learn a new language, and on the other hand we are also exploring the IGT for building these computational tools,'' Amba Kulkarni, the coordinator of the course, said in a release.

The research undertaken by the students during the last 15 years has resulted into a computational platform Saṃsādhanī that hosts several computational tools for accessing and understanding Sanskrit texts.

The department collaborates with a computer scientist turned computational linguist, Gérard Huet from Inria Paris Research Centre, France. The collaboration between these two groups has resulted in a joint system that can analyse any Sanskrit text. This resulted into this innovative course, where the traditional methods of teaching are combined with the modern technology without compromising the ‘understanding’ of Sanskrit texts.

So far 250 have registered for the course including those from abroad, University of Hyderabad and other universities in the country. The students have varied backgrounds from Arts and Humanities to Engineering and Medicine; they range from 20 to 80 years of age, geographically from Fiji to California covering the whole world.

According to B J Rao, Vice Chancellor, UoH the course would be a 'trendsetter' to understand how language analysis, rigour of computation and scientific methods can be utilized for understanding thoughts as well as also understanding the construction of ideas through languages.


Published on October 23, 2021

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