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Classroom Based Learning To Online Learning, A Paradigm Shift & The Way Forward

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Classroom Based Learning To Online Learning, A Paradigm Shift & The Way Forward

Dr. Raghuveer, Principal, Indore Institute of Science and Technology, Indore, 0

Dr. Raghuveer holds a PhD in Learning Technologies and has been an adviser to leading institutes for the effective implementation of Flipped Classroom through Learning Content Management Systems (LCMS)

The covid outbreak has literally banished the education setup, which otherwise was the most debated as one of the reason behind India’s 2020 dream. Most of the complaints on the education system were on the quality of the teaching & learning process and the lack of interest creation amongst the students. The other aspect that haunted the higher education institutions was that of a career opportunity that it can create for its learners. The mushrooming of academic institutions has led to the creation of more uneducated youth. This is primarily due to the fact that these institutes have never tried to understand their learners and try to address their needs for learning. In our country, if you still ask any kid between 6-10th standard on what exactly they want to pursue, their options may be limited to engineering, medicine, and others.

This is because of the bottom-up approach that our institutions adopt to train our learners. The bottom up approach doesn't give any upper level view to their aspirants rather put them together, treat them together in spite of the learners having different knowledge backgrounds and skill sets. This, over the period of time, spoils the creativity and interest among the minds of the students and makes them think alike. For an example, if you ask a question in a class of 40, the answers you get would mostly be the same. This itself shows that they are robotic rather than being human. If the fingerprints of the learners are 100 percent different, how come their thought prints can be the same. The problem with the system is to expect an answer rather than a question. The moment we start expecting the question from the students, their thought print can be realized, as the human brain raises different questions due to different kinds of interpretation. Learning comprehension is a key issue that our learner faces, which is hardly being given any attention by the educational institutions right from the school level.

The Paradigm Shift
Shifting to an online platform happened in an instance amidst the hardship faced in terms of the bandwidth and the audio/video issues associated with it. Remember; such a transition happened without any explicit training being given to the teachers and the students. This was possible only in the present generation due to the higher penetration of the Smart Devices and the availability of 4G internet. However, with respect to the sustainability of online learning, the fact that is being missed is the liveliness of the session. Teachers do miss it a lot, as they feel like teaching a computer screen rather than the students. Whether we like it or not, these Online Teaching Learning is about to be there for another few months.

In that case, it is up to us to use it wisely and make it effective for the students. It is also the responsibility of the educational institutes to draft a proper plan for utilizing the online platforms in their teaching learning process. This requires the support of a Learning Technologist who can guide the teachers on the various tools that can be integrated into the environment to make the pedagogy a complete one. The classroom
based delivery can accommodate different teaching pedagogy to assist the learner in learning new things; however, all of these can’t be used in an Online Platform. For example, an activity based learning method to learn a concept could be very well choreographed by the teacher by involving the students in a role play activity to explain a concept. The impact that such an activity creates on the minds of the learners greatly helps in understanding and retention of the concept for a long time. However, online platforms do have a positive advantage when it comes to the Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) tools support that can be integrated into the platform at appropriate interval to make the learning an interesting activity.

The classroom based delivery can accommodate different teaching pedagogy to assist the learner in learning new things; however, all of these can’t be used in an online platform


Missing Social Learning in Online Platforms
Group Assignments or workshops greatly help the student groups to participate and learn together. It is in such group activities the learners learn very fast from their peers. It also provides them an opportunity to share their thoughts freely and be creative. Hosting such activities through online platforms should be taught to the teachers through collaborative tools. Even though the effect of Online Collaboration may not be as expected in a typical classroom based one, the forums, collaborative editing, social media based interactions, and others are very much familiar to these younger generations and so they may easily get associated with it. Moreover, the industries like Information Technology (IT), Industry 4.0 - Future factories, and others are going to work this way through remote operation and collaboration. The evolution of automation and Artificial Intelligence is going to revolutionize all the industries in some way or the other, where the manual assistance is least required and managing the activities of different locations over the cloud itself.

“Group assignments or workshops greatly help the student groups to participate and learn together. It is in such group activities the learners learn very fast from their peers.”

From Sanitation to Sensitization
Good or bad, this covid outbreak has created a scenario which was not familiar to us before. Now being human, we have to adapt to the environment very fast in order to survive as well as sustain. Survival phase with respect to saving our work is possible for few of the domains like teaching, IT, and others, was possible due to the adoption of technology by us within a short time frame. However, in order to sustain this in the long run and ensure better productivity in what we do, we must sensitize our stakeholders on the importance of doing the work in a new way. We must move from the Sanitation phase to Sensitizing the people in the right use of technology in order to attain the outcomes of what we do. A good organization does that by bringing the experts on board to regularize their workflow that got affected. This would greatly benefit the team to better utilize the technology and be more productive.

Conclusion
The technology can be used in a positive way to handle any kind of situation. Make or break is up to the individual using the same. But the optimal use of technology lies in the hands of experts who can streamline its appropriate use and make necessary provision for the measurement of the outcomes. The prevailing scenario requires Learning Technologies experts who can help the institutions to plan and use the tools in an appropriate way.

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