Digitizing School Education
School education in India has undergone massive change or rather is undergoing a massive change. Change in terms of infrastructure, change in terms of curriculum and change in the medium of delivery of education and instruction. Yes, we now have international schools, with hi-tech language labs, science labs, computer labs and so on. In few of these schools, students don’t even carry books and note books to and from their homes. They have lockers where they can keep their books and other paraphernalia in the school itself.
Various such schools have already gone ahead and included digital education. By digital I mean smart classes, in addition to having study from a classic text book, student and teachers now have access to smart classes, digital classes. Educators, content writers, Instructional designers, catering to school education are rapidly building smart digital content for schools focusing on various classes starting from class 1 up to class 12, which is better known as K-12.
Blended learning – a mix of both text book learning and smart or digital text and digital education classes are soon becoming part of school education. To enable the smooth delivery of such learning, smart tablets are being provided. These tablets are at times preloaded with educational content. In fact such ebooks will become part and parcel of every student’s school education. Teaching using both text books and ebooks and elearning modules is believed to make easy comprehension of difficult concepts. Concepts are being easily explained using diagrams, images, and simple animations. In fact, in the very near future, extensive use of educational ebooks will have a major impact on the entire education system. It is likely that there might be an entire shift from text books to ebooks altogether. Digital education or digitizing school education can benefit everyone, teacher, students, and parents. With digital education in place, teachers and parents can keep track of the students/children’s progress, their weak areas, or areas of improvement, the areas where they excel, their progress in terms of class work, home assignments and so on. Many private organizations have made considerable progress in this regard. An organization catering to K-12 education such as Educomp, has made a niche for itself in this training and learning industry. Though there are numerous other companies focusing on digitizing school education that are also facilitating digital school education.
Of course, for all the schools to adapt the digital educational facility such as ebooks, smart tabs and blended learning will take time and in India it is still in its nascent stage, but very soon, we can see some huge progress made in this field. Already, in few schools black boards have been replaced with white boards, there is provision of over head projectors. In addition to getting digital boards in classrooms; students have access to tablets and mobile devices which have preloaded educational content in them.
But, when on one hand we have digital version of text books, ebooks, elearning being adapted in some schools, there are few schools in our country which lack basic facility, such as lavatories, text books, basic sitting arrangements, and teachers. So, there should also be conscious effort made to bring such schools that lag behind at par with other schools so that we have equality in terms of education. Well, only time will tell if such digitizing will act as a boon or a bane in the coming years.
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