Technology has become an integral part of our education system with the introduction of new-age digital platforms enhancing the academic landscape in India. Students at every level of education, from pre-K to graduate and professional levels, use one or the other means of edtech to enrich their learning abilities. Among these technological advancements, online education has gain momentum with the availability of several edtech companies and various government initiatives making inroads into our education system. The pedagogical evolution and the use of technology in the education sector have turned all focus on the Indian education market, making the country the second-largest market for e-learning after the US.
Making online courses more relevant
Technology must be accessible to all the students, regardless of special needs, different learning styles, or demographics. The most successful strategy for creating an equitable tech experience is to use a platform that employs an accessible design in the earliest content development stages. To make the online education in India more impactful, UGC has permitted higher educational institutions in the country to offer Certificate, Diploma, and Degree Programmes in online mode to the students under the University Grants Commission (Online Courses) Regulations, 2018. With such a reform, it is evident that the benefits served by online learning have convinced even the government to take relevant actions for its betterment.
In critical times of pandemic such as the Covid-19 that has brought the world to an almost complete lockdown, online education is turning out to be the savior in these trying times. Besides, hampering the global economy, the outbreak has disrupted the educational institutions leaving the education sector among the worst-hit sectors. The pandemic has led to the indefinite closure of schools, colleges, universities, and all extracurricular activities suspended, tens of millions of students have been told to go online to study across the globe. This sudden closure of educational institutions across the globe has forced the virtual delivery of a vast number of courses. This also makes us wonder whether the future might just have become the present.
Why online education matters
E-learning tools provide a plethora of educational resources for both educators and students which they couldn’t have access to, no matter what their location or status is. A student can learn from the top professor a continent away and that too in their own preferred time. In a classroom full of 20-30 students, it’s impossible to get the attention of all of them. They won’t cooperate because they’re bored, zoned out, or too focused on the sun outside rather than paying attention to math. Let’s focus on some of the points that make online education relevant:
Easy Access: Online learning helps to eliminate both social and physical barriers, meaning if a student misses his class, he can access the lectures online if made available.
Variety of programs and courses: From traditional university courses to completely online career colleges, higher education today offers a variety of options for students.
Flexibility: Online courses give students/learners the freedom of choosing a time of their own. Students can study and work at their convenience. Course material is always accessible online, and it is unnecessary to make special library trips.
Career advancement: Students can take online courses and even complete entire degrees while working, while in-between jobs, or while taking time to raise a family. This academic work will explain any discontinuity or gaps in a resume as well.
Teacher Development: E-learning is not only beneficial for students but also for the teachers as good teachers love to teach, but the best educators enjoy the opportunity to learn consistently.