Soft Skill Development

By Prof. Priyadarshi Patnaik, Prof. V.N. Giri, Prof. D. Suar   |   IIT Kharagpur
Learners enrolled: 23674
While hard skills teach us what to do, soft skills tell us how to apply our hard skills in a social environment. The focus of the course is to develop a wide variety of soft skills starting from communication, to working in different environments, developing emotional sensitivity, learning creative and critical decision making, developing awareness of how to work with and negotiate with people and to resolve stress and conflict in ourselves and others. 

The uniqueness of the course lies in how a wide range of relevant issues are raised, relevant skills discussed and tips for integration provided in order to make us effective in workplace and social environments. The key areas addressed are conversation skills, group skills, persuasion skills, presentation skills, critical and creative thinking, emotional skills, positive thinking and vocational skills.

INTENDED AUDIENCE : For anyone keen to improve her soft skills, Elective Course, Open course (UG and PG), No restrictions, ideally after class XII

PREREQUISITES : Basic knowledge in communication and a good understanding of English

INDUSTRY SUPPORT : All industries where soft skills are important will recognize the relevance of this course
Course Status : Completed
Course Type : Elective
Duration : 8 weeks
Category :
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit Points : 2
Level : Undergraduate/Postgraduate
Start Date : 24 Jan 2022
End Date : 18 Mar 2022
Enrollment Ends : 07 Feb 2022
Exam Date : 27 Mar 2022 IST

Note: This exam date is subjected to change based on seat availability. You can check final exam date on your hall ticket.

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1:
Communication skills 1: The basics

Topics to be covered:

i. Understanding the communicative environment-I
ii. Understanding the communicative environment-II
iii. What to listen for and why
iv. When to speak and how
v. Starting and sustaining a conversation
Week 2:
Communication skills 2 : Presentation and interaction

Topics to be covered:

i. What to present and how – I
ii. What to present and how – II
iii. Multimedia presentation: Understanding the basics
iv. Communication styles
v. Speaking in groups
Week 3:
Communication skills 3: Visual, nonverbal and aural communication

Topics to be covered:

i. The world of visual culture
ii. Visual perception
ii. The aural: Its relevance and impact
iv. The body and the way it communicates
v. The face, its expressions and what it says
Week 4:
Interpersonal communication 1: Individuals, groups and cultures

i. Building Relationships
ii. Understanding Group Dynamics- I
iii. Understanding Group Dynamics- II
iv. Groups, Conflicts and their Resolution
v. Social Network, Media and Extending Our Identities
Week 5:
Interpersonal communication 2: Emotional and social skills
Week 6:
Developing key traits 1: Creativity, critical thinking and problem solving
Week 7:
Developing key traits 2: Motivation, persuasion, negotiation and leadership

i. Motivating oneself
ii.The art of persuasion-I
iii.The art of persuasion-II
iv. From persuasion to negotiation
v. Leadership and motivating others
Week 8:
Essential and vocational skills: survival strategies

i. Managing time
ii. Managing stress
iii. Resilience
iv. Work-life balance
v. Applying soft-skills to workplace

Books and references


Instructor bio

Prof. Priyadarshi Patnaik

Priyadarshi Patnaik is a Professor of English and Communication in the Department of Humanities & Social Sciences, IIT Kharagpur. He is also the Secretary, Nehru Museum of Science and Technology, IIT Kharagpur, and Rector’s Nominee, Technology Students Gymkhana, IIT Kharagpur. His areas of research include Visual communication, Music and emotion, Communication and culture, Media communication, Translation, and Digital humanities. He has authored and edited more than 14 volumes of text, reference, and creative work. He has a number of research papers, translations, poems, short stories, illustrations and photographs in many national and international journals. He is currently one of the Co-PIs involved with a number of cultural and heritage projects under the MHRD Mega-Project, SandHI. 

Prof. V.N. Giri

Vijay Nath Giri is a Professor and Head in the Department of Humanities & Social Sciences, IIT Kharagpur. He has been teaching subjects related to Communication Studies. He has received many awards including DAAD-Fellowship, Germany. He has published a book, a number of book chapters, and more than fifty research papers in referred journals. He has supervised eight students for Ph.D. degree. He was on the editorial board of ‘Communication Theory” published by International Communication Association, USA and member editorial board “Encyclopaedia of Communication Theory” published by Sage, USA. His current research interests include organizational, interpersonal and intercultural communication, communication styles, and conflict management. 

Prof. D. Suar

IIT Kharagpur
Damodar Suar is a Professor in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Kharagpur and in the Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur. He was the Head in the Department of Humanities & Social Sciences from 2007-2010. Currently, he is the President of National Academy of Psychology India and the Editor of the journal Psychological Studies (Springer). He teaches Research methodology, Organisational behavior, and Psychology. His research focuses on leadership, laterality, cognition, values, post-disaster trauma, disaster preparedness, and pro-environmental behavior. He has authored over 125 scientific/professional articles including book chapters. He has authored a book on Psychological aspects of polarisation phenomenon and co-edited three books. He has produced 25 Ph.D. students, handled more than 30 research/consultancy projects, and co-ordinated 20 training programmes.

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 27 March 2022 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 6 assignments out of the total 8 assignments given in the course.
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IIT Kharagpur .It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning.

- NPTEL team

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