RMIT computer science lecturer, Shekhar Kalra is an expert in web technology and has been recognised by the Department of Education for inspiring students and cultivating curiosity.
The field of information technology (IT) is changing in leaps and bounds and students need to be equipped with the latest knowledge and resources in order to thrive in this dynamic area.
My teaching is focused on helping students develop high-level industry skills in computer science. I’m passionate about teaching the next generation of IT experts; fanning the flames of their enthusiasm and honing their ability to respond to challenges.
As a lecturer in undergraduate and postgraduate studies at RMIT, my expertise lies within the areas of web technology, enterprise level architecture and cloud computing.
The ever-changing and exciting nature of web technology attracted me to this field many years ago. During my master degree, I specialised in internet and web computing and later worked in the industry as a solution architect. The mechanics of this area have changed completely over the past few years – there’s always something new to learn.
These days students are very tech-savvy and technical information can easily be found on the web. As an educator in this field, it’s up to me to make classes interesting and worthwhile.
Teaching, as we once knew it, has changed. The days of standing in front of the class to deliver a monotonous lecture are gone. Lessons need to be interactive in order to evoke the students’ curiosity and programs need to meet modern technological and industry needs. Engagement with industry is now an absolute necessity.
I’ve witnessed many student successes during my career and each story is unique. In one particular case, first year student, Matthew Sullivan came to me with an idea and business model for a commercially viable iPhone app. I was able to help him distil the idea and put him in touch with other students to assist with the development. The app is a called Quick-Q and is currently being developed for commercialisation.
What sets successful students apart from the rest is enthusiasm, a humble disposition and an inner drive to explore new things.
Some of the things I enjoy most about being at RMIT is delving into the technology and engaging with students to teach them practical skills in preparation for their career.
In 2015 I was humbled to receive acknowledgement from the Department of Education, winning a National Office of Learning and Teaching Citation award. In the same year, I also received an RMIT Vice Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching and Learning award and an RMIT Best Sessional Lecturer award.
Due to emerging technologies such as cloud computing, data analytics, ambience intelligence and the Internet of Things, the IT sector has a lot to offer at the moment and it’s definitely where the jobs of the future will be.