The Tamil Nadu Open University was established by an Act (No.27 of 2002) of the Legislative Assembly of the Government of Tamil Nadu to benefit those who have been deprived of and/or denied the access to higher education especially destitute, physically challenged, working men and women, economically weaker sections of the society, and those who discontinued education for various reasons, etc. In the main, it aims to reach the hitherto unreached. The University offers many Programmes in various disciplines.
The efforts of independent learning would be adequately supported through Study Centres, which have been identified in 10 important towns of Tamil Nadu, viz., Chennai, Viluppuram, Trichy, Madurai, Tirunelveli, Vellore, Salem, Coimbatore and Nagapattinam. The University has also established 334 Information Centres at Taluk Levels, to enable those who are longing for but are forced to remain away from the folds of Higher Education. In all the Study and Information Centres week-end counselling sessions will be organized regularly through experienced faculties to ensure student-faculty interaction and for processing of the assignments submitted by the students for internal assessment
With the approval of Government of Tamil Nadu we have launched MBA, Post-Graduate Diploma in Management, Diploma in Management, MA (English, Tamil, History, Economics, Sociology, Public Administration, Political Science and Psychology), M.Com., M.C.A., B.Com., B.A., (English, Tamil, History, Economics and Tourism), B.C.A. Post-Graduate Diploma in Computer Applications, and Certificate programmes in Computing (CIC), Environmental Sciences (CES), Rural Development (CRD), Food & Nutrition (CFN), Teaching Primary School Mathematics (CTPM), Empowering Women through Self-Help Groups (CWDL) Desk Top Printing (DTP), House Electrician (CHE), Plumbing Technician (CPT), Catering Assistant (CCA), Refrigeration & Air-Conditions Technician (CRAT) and Four Wheeler Mechanic (CFM) for the academic year 2004-2005.
All the programmes will have a built-in flexibility to facilitate "mobility" of students by means of credit-based structures. Due recognition and exemption in terms of credits would be given for the courses completed elsewhere. Entry requirements would be relaxed for graduate programmes (B.A. and B.Com.) to facilitate those aspirants who have not formally pursued any programme so far in order to enable them to pursue a course of study of their choice. However, to maintain standards and ensure quality, the students who seek relaxed entry provisions would be required to complete successfully a specially designed preparatory programmes namely Bachelor Preparatory Programme (BPP), concurrently with B.A./B.Com degree as the case may be.
The University has also been recognised internationally when the University became a member of South Asian Foundation and Asian Association of Open Universities. The memberships will help the University to share the resources on Distance Education scheme throughout Asia. Besides, the University has been recognised by Govaty Foundation of France and has awarded & ldquo; France India Heritage& rdquo; recently.
The Distance Education Council of Indira Gandhi National Open University, the apex body for all the Open and Distance Education Institutions in the country is mandated to promote ODL system in the country inter alia by liberally sanctioning Development Grants to Open and Distance learning institutions in the country. The proposal of Tamil Nadu Open University for Development Grant received top priority of Distance Education Council. Accordingly, a three member Committee visited TNOU to assess the financial requirements and after making an objective assessment, based on the report of the Committee, Distance Education Council sanctioned Rs. 55.50 lakhs towards Development Grant to Tamil Nadu Open University.
Launching of all programmes in Tamil, designing, developing and printing of all its study materials and producing its own educational audio/video cassettes are also in the offing. With the supports of Tamil Nadu Government and the Distance Education Council the University will grow in leaps and bounds in the coming days, thereby fulfilling the aspirations and expectations of Hon'ble Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu to give cost effective Higher Education to all those masses who were denied so far, and reach every nook and corner, hitherto un- reached in the State of Tamil Nadu. Obviously, the dreams Of TNOU is to put Tamil Nadu in a predominant position on the educational map of India will come true.