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Digital learning evolves during COVID-19; making it accessible to poor remains a big challenge

Manoj Kumar Rohilla | Updated on: 26 May 2020, 13:36 IST

COVID-19 has changed the way we impart knowledge. With schools shut and coronavirus refusing to go for a long time to come, digital learning is fast evolving as a panacea--get quality eduction behind the secured walls of your home while observing mandatory social distancing.

No learning without gadgets

Looks all very simple. But digital tools and gadgets easily available to students in metros and cities, become alien objects in remote areas of the country. How do you make poor students benefit from developments in digital learning when access to smartphones, laptops, desktops, and the internet remains elusive?

Need to integrate poor students

"Making digital education accessible to poor students living in remote areas or cities remains a challenge and we as a society need to work towards achieving this goal," says Aakash Chaudhry, Director & CEO Aakash Educational Services Ltd.

"Education is not confined to merely sharing a video, it has to be interactive and the communication between students, teachers, and student groups should happen to make the learning beneficial and highly effective," adds Aakash Chaudhry.

During a FB Live Interactive Session on Catchnews.com Aakash Chaudhry highlighted the opportunities and challenges in the field of digital education, and how COVID-19 has forced the industry to evolve very fast to meet the challenges posed by the coronavirus.

The change in the digital learning ecosystem is irreversible and COVID-19 has made people realise the importance of 'online learning' as an effective way to further their learning journey. "Earlier people used to heavily trust offline teaching method only--classroom teaching--but now they are fast realising that online learning is a good option which can open a range of opportunities to all those who can't afford to go to the classrooms due to various constraints," says Aakash Chaudhry.

Train the teachers


Teachers accustomed to blackboard and chalk find it daunting to interact on Zoom, or any other video conferencing platform. To make students get engaged, teachers need to find ways to make them participate in the discussions, seek students' opinions and responses throughout the class, and also regularly assess their progress to keep track of the performance of each and every student. This puts a lot of stress on the teacher, especially when they are not very familiar with the technology. So, proper training sessions should be conducted for teachers to make them technology savvy.

Don't compromise on the quality of education

Experts opine that if unregulated, this online learning alternative could turn into a big mess. There is a need to keep a strict vigil on the institutions and proper guidelines should be framed for all those operating in the field of online education, warn experts.

First published: 26 May 2020, 13:09 IST
Manoj Kumar Rohilla @maanojrohilla

Manoj has worked for nearly all forms of media--print, tv, radio and digital. During the last 22 years, he has worked for DNA India, DD, Zee TV, Nepal 1, Sahara Samay, IBN 7, India News, News Express and Daily Bhaskar. He loves making documentaries. As Deputy Editor he manages and heads news operations of Catch News, and Catch Hindi.