BY DR.ISHFAQ AHMAD SHAH
In India, the Ministry of Education has announced the closure of all education institution across the country since March 16 to contain the spread of corona virus. As the infection continues to increase, so does the number of holidays in educational institutions. However, in order to ensure that the students are not harmed in any way due to the holidays and their learning life is not disrupted, initiative are taken to utilize the digital platform. Most of the school colleges adopted technology for online classes. Today we are facing a lot of difficulties under the lockdown of Covid-19. Online learning has eased this problem going on in lockdown. Now according to the instructions of the school, teachers are teaching children from home so that education is not hindered in any way.
WHAT IS E- LEARNING?
Technology-based e- learning encompasses the use of the internet and other important technologies to produce materials for learning, teach learners, and also regulate courses in an organization. E-learning can enhance the quality of education. Growing programs use online laboratories, simulations, and visualization to help students gain experience and improve their understanding of complex topics. E- learning refers to any education that is electronically enabled. Educational Technology (e- learning) is defined as all type of electronically supported learning and pedagogy, which are inherently functional and aimed at building knowledge in the content of the learner’s personal experience, practice, and knowledge.
THERE ARE TWO TYPES OF E- LEARNING:
Synchronous – This means, “at the same time”. Learners and instructors interact with each other from different place at the same time. In this way, on learning a subject, learner is able to ask question immediately. Synchronous e- learning include audio and video conferencing, live chat, virtual classroom, webinars etc.
Asynchronous: this means “not at a time”. There is no concept to interact in real time between students and instructors. Rather information already exists. For example, web-based training in which we can do an online course, blogs, websites, videos tutorials, e-books, forums etc.
Time saving: Many children go to school far away from their home for study and due to time, that is lost in traveling, they are not able to do any extra curriculum or extra activity.
Convenience: Online classes are quite convenient. Children can sit at home in this pandemic situation and study without going to school. They can sit and study wherever they want.
Flexibility: Teacher can keep the class and postpone it whenever he wants. Teacher does not have to travel and this saves lot of his time. Those students missing out on classes can access easily anytime from the comfort of their home.
Less paper usage: Another advantage of the process of online education is that it reduces the use of paper. The use of paper in studying with a digital technology becomes almost negligible compared to the classroom. Online study tests are also conducted, due to which the use of paper is reduce a lot.
Gaining knowledge of gadgets and softwares: Students are doing their class in video chat, which they are technically perfecting. This is the reason why in today’s date almost all children have a good knowledge of gadgets. The urge to learn new things related to online is increasing among them. Students have learned a new way of using technology with online classes.
Lack of discipline: Students in school always follow discipline and complete their class work and homework at a set time. But online education does not follow fixed discipline.
Bad internet connection: Students who live in small towns and villages mostly unable to attend the online classes due to bad internet connection.
Lower socio-economic: Many of students don’t have smartphones/laptops or money to keep the internet connection while also playing the school fees.
Distraction: In online learning, teachers and students have to manage everything in one room with their family member around them. This can easily distract the learning process.
Course content: The course content was previously designed in relation to traditional classroom. But with the shift to online learning the curriculum needs to be remodeled.
Communication: Sometimes students feel shy to communicate with their teachers and friends due to new model of learning. They are not able to express themselves via live chats, emails or text messages.
Over exposure to screen: Online study requires electronic screen gadgets for conducting class. Students have to look at the screen continuously for long periods of time, sometimes 2 to 3 hours. In this way looking at the screen for a long time may deteriorate the visual and mental health. Most students complaint of headache and eye problems.
Unprepared teachers and students: Not all teachers and students are good at it or at least not all of them were ready for this sudden transition from face-to-face learning to online learning.
Ashfaq Ahmad Shah, Research scholar Microbiology\Immunology, Graphic Era (deemed to be) University, clement town Dehradun, UK.
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