Have trajectories of various e-learning classes proved to be fragile source of poised classroom lessons or is it yet another added myth? Let us find out the hits and hitches of e-education in India.
While there is no international congress held to lay rules tooverburden students with conservative educational traditions of classroom programs, not much improvisation has been done to curb the effect either.In other words, we’re yet to face situations when the only distance between a classroom lecture and the student will be the click of a button and not long awaiting traffic and fuel bills. Education in India is certainly a cardinal affair and e-education is supposedly the icing on the cake. Since numbers don’t lie the recent research report prepared by Investor Relation Society, affiliated to US based Global Investor Relations Network has suggested that the private education segment in India is alone expected to cross the USD 45 billion mark by 2015, as quoted in Economic Times . It even speculates that education spending in India will be USD 600 billion. Though it is hard to digest but researched. E-Education is all about students attending classes and completing assignments as per their needs and requirements. In his speech at the Techonomy conference, Bill Gates predicted that technology could soon make place-based learning five times less important for college and university students. It was a worthy prediction to make though. Imagine the freedom to attend lectures without the unnecessary boundations with regards to time, venue and resources. A student sitting in Assam can attend lectures of a professor delivering notes in Kerala. The universality of education makes the process more facile- for example, the third law of motion will be the same all over the globe. The progress of students can be well monitored and the students won’t be forced to compromise upon their learning ability unlike in classroom programs where the students are forced to rush or slog according to their peers. The big question arises whether India is yet ready for the big leap on large scale or not. With majority of youth population still struggling for basic amenities like electricity, e-education still seems like a distant dream. On the other hand, Indians are more inclined to conventional methods of classroom training thus accepting e-learning is a major hindrance. Some believe that the discipline of having to regularly attend a classroom program and deal with the teacher in-person will be disturbed with e-learning. In a recent experiment at IIM Ranchi, the authorities asked its students to attend the lectures in the comforts of their hostel rooms utilizing e-learning technology including biometric sensors and camera .It is therefore a matter of personal choice rather than necessity In Indian context, e-education is lately synonymous with Educomp which is a globally diversified education service provider and narrows down its approach to solving critical problems relating to ‘quality of education’ and ‘access to education’ for all. It has been providing smartclass video modules and calibrated assessment for school students and teachers. At the government level, IGNOU, India’s largest Open University, has announced the details of the virtual university for Africa after the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh promised such an institution in May, 2011, at a summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Pan-African E-learning Network of IGNOU will be devised as a robust e-learning network that will go a long way in alleviating the needs of African nations. On a global front, other not-for-profit platforms offering free online courses are MIT and Harvard’s recently launched edX platform and yet another one is Udacity . Other examples of e-education ventures are startups like MadRat Games and Redbyets, Omidyar-backed startup EnglishHelper uses software called RedToMe to improve English skills, SchoolCountry with its products Mathlab and BrainX helps students in Mathematics, iProf uses tablets to deliver test preparation content for competitive exams and so on. On a broader perspective, the e-learning scenario in India is still growing and at an experimental stage. E-learning is not only inexpensive, but also convenient. Yet there are huge digital divides which need to be bridged on an urgent basis for this venture to yield fruits. With rapid globalization, unskilled personnel & quick technological developments – E-learning is surely a boon to many to enjoy a richer learning experience. Image Src. .
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