What specific practices make the Department of Educational Technology of Bharathidasan University glorious?
The Department of Educational Technology, Bharathidasan University, Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu is a Teacher Education Department with national and international reputation as a leading centre for study and research with a focus on the integration and application of ICT (Information and Communication Technology) for enhancing the quality of teaching and learning of all subjects and at all levels. This Department has made significant contributions in popularising the applications of ICT among the schools, TTI’s/DIETs, Colleges of Education, Departments of Education, UGC Academic Staff Colleges and Other Educational Agencies, across the State and Nation. The Department has got International Reputation in terms of Commonwealth, UNESCO, British Council, and DFID Projects and Awards on areas like ‘Use of ICT in Education’, ‘Learning to Learn with ICT’ and ‘Reduction of Poverty and Gender Equity through ICT’. The Department of Educational Technology has been selected as the First Teacher Education Department in the entire South India for the award of the UGC’s Special Assistance Programme under Departmental Research Support. The identified thrust areas are Educational Communication and e-Content Development. Under this scheme, the Department would receive funds for a period of five years from 2007 to 2012 for Capacity Development of Teacher Educators in e-Content Development and creation of e-Content materials at various levels.
The Department invites Post Graduate students (M.Ed. students) and Ph.D. students to undertake studies in the field of ICT in education. A strong publications and dissemination programme helps evolve the Department into a clearing house on ICT in teacher education. Organising national and international conferences, seminars and brain storming sessions on specific areas of relevance is a regular feature of the Department’s activities.
What are the new programmes being planned in Educational Technology?
The targeted activities of our Department of Educational Technology under the aegis of SAP include capacity building programmes; production and dissemination of educational progra-mmes; and providing a knowledge sharing forum for the scholars.
The Department plans to network with leading institutions in education and ICT to develop and deliver interventions in pre-service and in-service teacher education, equipping the teachers of the future with the skills and knowledge of ICT, its integration with other subjects and its other applications in enhancing the effectiveness of the teaching learning process.
Developing an online digital repository of e-Content Modules and Short Learning Objects have been planned to catalyse the use of ICT. Undertaking research studies to inform practices and policy perspectives in ICT in education has been and will continue to be one of the major activities of the Department.
What are the e-Readiness challenges in the higher education sector? e-Readiness is the capacity of stakeholders (Administrators, Teachers and Students) to generate e-Learning opportunities by facilitating computer-based technologies. The e-Readiness of the environment is the degree of conduciveness of the environment that an institution provides for the development and use of ICT. In the field of education, it is the teacher education system which is most resistant to change. Most of the teachers do not go beyond chalk and talk and tap the potentials of digital technology for teaching and learning. Through various orientation and refresher courses, we have changed the mindset of the teachers and made them positive minded towards ICT.