ELUSIVE DIGITAL CLASSROOM EDUCATION

Hav­ing spent about 18 years in an edu­ca­tion sys­tem of a devel­op­ing world, its imper­a­tive for me to see the advan­tages it brings in. Let it be at the school level or the at uni­ver­sity sys­tem, dig­i­tal edu­ca­tion has a lot of poten­tial and hope to bridge the gap cre­ated by below par teach­ing stan­dards. How­ever over the years, as this model is tried and tested, the results are not so encour­ag­ing. I feel so espe­cially after expe­ri­enc­ing the edu­ca­tion sys­tem in a devel­oped world.

I recently read a news (Source: Dec­can Her­ald) where an engi­neer­ing uni­ver­sity boats of hav­ing spent crores of rupees in equip­ping its class rooms with state-of-the art teach­ing giz­mos. Unfor­tu­nately, in the mid­dle of all this hype, an insti­tu­tion fails to real­ize that the best minds are not built with high end teach­ing giz­mos but with enough free­dom to think and also by hav­ing the right teach­ers who encour­age the young minds to think. I more so felt this when I moved over to a fairly new (25 years) uni­ver­sity in Ger­many for my Masters.

Unlike the effort being put on dig­i­tal edu­ca­tion in Indian edu­ca­tion sys­tem, the class rooms over here are fairly sim­ple with bare min­i­mum infra­struc­ture. A typ­i­cal class room con­sists of a mov­ing multi-foldable black­board, a white board, bunch of chalks, marker pens and a pro­jec­tor. The won­der­ful nature of this setup is that the wall is used a screen for the pro­jec­tor and the rest of work are done on the board (in the tra­di­tional style). This setup is good enough to stim­u­late the think­ing in us. But even­tu­ally its the pro­fes­sor who with his thoughts and per­spec­tives makes the stu­dents think. And by far too, the qual­ity of edu­ca­tion is high when com­pared to back in India. This can be gauged by the university’s research out­put and the num­ber of stu­dents option for fur­ther education.

Hence I feel the insti­tu­tions in a devel­op­ing coun­try to should stop rid­ing on the hype of dig­i­tal class­rooms but instead invest time and space in acquir­ing the right teach­ing tal­ent and in devel­op­ing a through prov­ing & stress free environment.

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