Teachers of today often grapple with too much of paperwork while also handling crowded classrooms and students with emotional hitches. In the process, they become over-stressed owing to increased pressures in classroom management styles and practices in effective teaching. However, the scenario has been effectively addressed with the help of internet education tools – one of them can be quoted as “education portals”
By Inder Kumar, digital LEARNING Bureau
Though the concept of digital learning is new to the Indian environment of autocratic classroom structures, but the 24×7 portals are rewarding to the teachers as well as to those who are in the domain of public policy and planning functions.
Working on a lesson, an assignment, preparing a multiple choice questionnaire or a case study has never been so easy today with the introduction of these websites. Aiming to suit the fast growing complications in education system, the system of plugged-in education also includes resolving classroom management issues, promoting an effective learning management for schools, colleges, universities and organisations. The so called wired system of education also motivates students, especially those dealing with individual differences and emotional problems.
The interactive portals are quite accommodating for a teacher-led classroom learning process. Through rich media presentations, the websites facilitate preparation of online tests with free multimedia resources. Besides catering to content sharing for online K-12 community, the search engine helps students for self-paced learning. Moreover, the portals also serve as an online virtual school where parents and students can interact with teachers, get assignments and share educational material.
The portals provide numerous lesson materials for K-12 teachers and their students. They are designed to be delivered in a variety of formats and classroom settings. The lessons are Internet-based and mostly are free to everyone. Each lesson contains a teacher’s version as well as a student’s version which can be used in a variety of ways. Teachers can use as many of the lessons as they would like and can pass on the same to their students, in the way they wish to.
While talking to Vasundhara Vyas , Marketing Head of Education Initiatives (a group that runs education institutions), it was found that the learning tools available online, i.e. Mind Spark, aid teachers in preparing tests, vis-a-vis creating a real life application based questions so that students can relate to their practical life and learn easily. The online software also eases the burden of result preparation, it comes out with diagnostic reports, simplifies the assessment process and also notifies where a student is lacking and what should be done.
Although, online education system is new to mindset of teachers in India, it is being openly welcomed by many in the education sector. Sudhir Kumar, Assistant Professor at Delhi University’s Ramjas College has found the concept very advantageous for learning. “If students learn online prior to attending their regular class , they become clear with the basics, and this, in turn, makes it easy for the teachers to help students understand the complexities,” he says.
Enabling the transfer of skills via computer and network, the concept of internet education encourages web-based learning, virtual education opportunities and gaining knowledge with digital collaboration. The content is delivered via the internet, intranet or extranet, audio or video tapes, satellite TV, and CD-ROM. The content is made approachable with the support of media in the form of text, image, animation, and streaming video and audio.
“e- Learning offers coaching at a convenient time, at the comfort of home and is unlike private tuition centres”
R S Rawat
General Secretary, ASSOCHAM
Chitra Bhatia, VP, Sanako Corporation is of the opinion that with the help of online learning, teachers can adapt to the needs of students, changing curriculum, content and most importantly, maintaining class motivation. “I do not see e-tutorial as a threat to teachers but a teaching aid that helps both teachers and the students learn faster and better. Most of the successful e-learning content in the market today is driven by teachers and customers are ready to pay higher for the same.” She added that the teacher driven content has various advantages over self driven learning as teachers can adapt learning to the students, they can help the students to manage learning better by helping them in the process of learning which includes – Remembering, Understanding, Applying, Analysing, Evaluating and Creating.
With regard to the future prospects of online learning in India, Bhatia says that online learning is the best option today and for the future as well. It is bound to grow rapidly as we are facing acute shortage of good teachers, physical infrastructure and quality education.
The system of internet education aids in maintaining classroom discipline, motivating work and keeping up relationships with parents. It also helps organise class work, padding insufficient or inadequate teaching materials with supplies and to some extent, rallies around dealing with problems of individual students as well. According to R. S. Rawat, Secretary General of the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), online learning program offering a comprehensive one-stop-shop for education search, the online education system is an upcoming tool for mobilising online learning through education portals. The technology-based course development and management system is increasingly becoming the pick of the litter of many academicians and students. The concept does not aim to replace teacher-based classrooms but only propagates the idea that learning can be advanced with technological development and can be fun as well.