Complete details about Atal Tinkering Laboratories

Giving homage to former prime minister Mr. Atal Bihari Bajpai, the NITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India) has launched Atal Innovation Mission (AIM). Atal Tinkering Laboratories (ATL) was launched with a vision to establish science laboratories (labs) in different schools across India.

Focusing on ATL, the writer will attempt to provide complete details of this program, which can be used as a guide for the readers who want to get a fair idea about the same. Starting from the main features of this initiative, the writer will discuss methods provided for extracting benefit from this program. Afterward, with a brief discussion on funding & procedural aspects, the writer shall pin out the latest developments in this program. Lastly, this article will end by commenting on the long-term benefit of this program.

Key features of ATL Program 

Under this flagship initiative, AIM has placed a stepping stone with ATL intending to carve 1 million Indian school students (minimum) into neoteric innovators. For understanding insight vision of this program, its characteristics are summarized below:

1. Encompass Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Skills in school students in the initial stage of their mental development;
2. This program targets Indian school students who are between 12 to 18 yrs of age;
3. Labs development in this program shall have basic like computers, electronics, science, robotics, sensors, 3D printers, and open-source microcontroller boards. Along with this, labs can also do other upgrades which facilitate online & offline meetings;
4. For interaction and maintaining the spirit of competition, national/regional competitions, and problem-solving workshops, lectures should also be conducted;
5. Along with the above time to time exhibitions should also organize wherein designing and fabrication of products etc. can be demonstrated;
6. For all the participating students, an educational kit shall also be provided.

Financial support for ATL

AIM shall assign financial support of Rs. 20 Lakhs to each participating school for a maximum period of 5 yrs. The schools spend half of the portion in establishing labs and another half on operational expenses with this amount.

Procedure for participating in ATL

Any government and private school across India having students from classes VI to X can participate in this program and set up Labs for their students. Pathway for the same is provided on the official website. E-handbook giving roadmap of ATL with its content guide is also publically available wherein all the modules are discussed.

ATL Achievements

Implementing the master plan of AIM, the program of ATL has been accepted by lots of schools which show commendable efforts in fostering entrepreneurship & innovation culture in students.

The main highlights of the ATL program are as under:

  • Till now, 8,700 Labs are set under the ATL program;

  • All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), and Council of Science & Industrial Research (CSIR) has adopted this ATL program in March-April 2021;

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) and NITI Aayog announced a tie-up in March 2021.

Future of ATL

After the school breaks due to Covid-19, the ATL program is a game-changer initiative that can excite students to resume their school life again. If AIM (umbrella mission) ensures regular active faculty & proper maintenance of the labs, it will surely show a remarkable transition in Indian students from ‘game player’ to ‘game changer’.

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