IASbhai Daily Editorial Hunt | 23rd Sep 2020
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.– Steve Jobs
EDITORIAL HUNT #152 :“The Learning Must Go On | UPSC“
The Learning Must Go On | UPSC
Rohit Dhankar is Professor, Azim Premji University, Bengaluru, and Founder Secretary, Digantar, Jaipur, Rajasthan. The views expressed are personal
E-learning in India, a case of bad education
In poorly performing educational systems as in the country, online learning may not usher in a revolution
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Education
Substantiate the online teaching learning hurdles the young generation is facing with the help of a proper framework. Also -(GS 3)
- Quality of Online Education
- Key Issues
- Inequalities in education
- PREVENTING GROWTH : (Read this line twice)-An environment in which some are limited will always in reaction create conditions that prevent the full development even of those who fancy they enjoy complete freedom for unhindered growth.
- QUALITY OF EDUCATION : For good education, one must lead the child’s current interests and abilities organically to logically organised human knowledge.
THE KEY ISSUES
- INEFFICIENT EDUCATION SYSTEM : Our education system was never very efficient even in the best of times.
- SET OF GUIDELINES : There are several sets of guidelines by National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) and the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) for this purpose.
- LEARNING MUST GO ON : The Internet space is teeming with learning schemes, teaching videos, sites and portals for learning opportunities.
- ACADEMIC CALENDAR : The content issued is Alternative Academic Calendar videos of teaching, digital editions of textbooks, and links to other such material.
- CONSIDERATIONS : There are three pertinent issues in this whole effort of online education and schemes that need serious consideration.
- An exacerbation of inequality
- The pedagogical issues leading to bad quality education
- An unwarranted thrust on online education, post-COVID-19.
EXACERBATION OF INEQUALITY
- UNDERPRIVILEGED : It is worth repeating a truism that calamities, be they natural or man-made, affect the underprivileged the hardest; COVID-19 is no exception.
- COMPARATIVE DISADVANTAGE : A similar but less noticed deprivation is being visited to children of the vulnerable people, which may push them to comparative disadvantage.
- MISSING TREND : In our society there is no large movement that may generate any hope of an improved situation in terms of equality and social justice.
- FRAGMENTED APPROACH : These State plans to assume semi-literate or illiterate parents teaching children, community involvement, mobile pools, and so on.
- THE ONLY ACCESS : As a result, whatever online or digital education is available is for students with only online access.
- DIGITAL INDIA : Thus, digital India may become even more unequal and divided than it already is.
LEARNING ENHANCEMENT GUIDELINES
- THE SURVEY : The NCERT declares in its Learning Enhancement Guidelines LEG that 60-70% students, teachers and parents consider learning satisfactory.
- QUANTUM OF LEARNING : The happiness or otherwise of the student while learning is, of course, important, but it says nothing about the quantum and depth of learning.
- HURDLES : Listening to lectures on the mobile phone, frequent disconnections and/or having blurred video/audio can hardly and organically connect the child’s present understanding with the logically organised bodies of human knowledge.
NO FOCUS ON CONCEPTS
- POOR CONTENT : If one sees videos of teaching mathematics, science, history, and the English language, one can hardly avoid noticing problems with them.
- AMBIGUITIES : In the science and mathematics videos, in particular, there are many misconceptions and ambiguities.
- FACTUAL VS CONCEPTUAL : The emphasis is more on ‘tricks’ to remember for success in an examination than laying the stress on conceptual understanding.
- QUALITY OF TEACHING : Many American educators have questioned the quality of teaching and have pointed out inadequate or plainly wrong concepts.
- SECONDARY EDUCATION : The secondary students are in a better position still because of their relative independence in learning and possible self-discipline.
- PEDAGOGY : Pen and newspapers in the hands of even ‘guided’ semi-literate parents will be good enough to present a plan on paper, but will be completely useless for the child’s learning.
THE THRUST, POST-COVID-19
- NEW REVOLUTION : It has been presented as a harbinger of a revolution in education for more than three decades now.
- ORIENTATION IS IMPORTANT : Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in the classroom helps but has no benefits or negative impact in poorly performing systems.
- REMODELLING : Alternative modes of education for the whole academic session including Internet-based, radio, podcast, community radio, IVRS, TV DTH Channels, etc.” should be developed.
- OVER-EMPHASIS : The importance of an institutional environment cannot be overemphasised when one thinks of online teaching.
- STUDENTS PLAYGROUND : Even when the institutions function sub-optimally, students themselves create an environment that supports their growth morally, socially and intellectually in conversations and interactions with each other.
- CLOSING GATES : The online mode of teaching completely forecloses this opportunity.
- LOOSING EDUCATION GRIP : Our democracy and public education system have, as usual, left the neediest in the lurch and are providing bad education to those who matter.
Education requires well-connected, regular efforts that are incrementally building to help the child focus his attention and to provoke him to distinguish and to discriminate, and develop a habit of staying on task.
SOURCES: THE HINDU EDITORIAL HUNT | The Learning Must Go On | UPSC