THE EDUCATION ONLINE PLATFORM
With still long many months to go for the classrooms to get abuzz, the present adhoc mechanism of bringing schools to the open source free video conferencing platforms may not be answer. The complexity of school teaching, learning, interpersonal rapport, teacher – taught interaction, practicals, exams and evaluation are not so simple that it moves onto the online mode seamlessly, without even any educator even thinking about it. This biggest transformation the education sector has ever experienced is being left to its own fate.
Pedagogy is one area of study and research which pertains to this mode, the consequent efficiency, assimilation and finally the result. It also talks about the ease of learning. When we all talk about ease of business and ease of living, where is the ease of learning? Can education be imparted in makeshift digital arrangements, which neither the students, parents, teachers or managements have any idea. As per the present standpoint, if the teacher is able to speak and the student is able to see her, education is complete.
Nobody has any idea of online education nor are they interested in knowing about it. Do we even know what is bandwidth required to have a online class? Whenever we develop online systems, we draw up the technical specifications based on the requirements and the technology we intend to use.? Do we know the method of storage of digital resources and the access and privileges? Any of these systems need a workflow mechanism to deliver end to end, each nearly playing the same role as in the physical world. How seamlessly we switch to the online education depends on our understanding of the subset at the intersection of education and technology.
Does the teacher have the capability to deliver on the digital medium, without any training whatsoever? Does her skills, technology and time allotted allow for the learning required? The fear is that in this haphazard transition, the students will be the losers. The education leaders / decision makers / educators and the technologists with the boards have to work out the nitty gritty of the technology and role of every stakeholder to the minutest detail, then preparations to be done – both for skills and technology and the supervisory mechanism, all have to happen. For the schools, this is the syllabus for change. Only then curriculum can go online. Common standards will have to be mandated and followed across schools.
COMMON MANDATED SECURE TECHNICAL STANDARDS ARE THE BEGINNING OF MASS ONLINE EDUCATION.
Stay home / stay safe.