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Education Methodology during and Post COVID
Is it simple?
Many Institutions are running spreadsheets to see how many learners spaced six feet apart will fit in a classroom, planning one-way paths through the workplace, and figuring out adaptations to restrooms, lunchrooms, and entrances. However, there is no way to accommodate the students in the available spaces. The situation is more serious because of great exodus and shift of population from urban to rural areas in places like India.
Until the COVID-19 crisis, online learning comprised a relatively small share of education. Now the situation demands for all the institutions, including IVY League Universities and renowned learning centers, to setup infrastructure to improve student learning, engagement, and experience while operating remotely. Many faculties are using varied methods for imparting lessons such as sending scanned notes via email or WhatsApp or using Webinar or video conferencing. Many States are planning to start DTH channels for education. None of these meet the learner’s requirements.
Learning Framework during and post COVID
Methodology to be adopted
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to take a massive toll on lives and livelihoods in entire world. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected educational systems worldwide, leading to the near-total closures of schools, universities and colleges impacting about 98.6 percent of the world’s student population. 1.3 billion learners around the world were not able to attend school or university. While the epidemic is still affecting the population all over the world and no effective vaccine in site, countries have started to reopen their learning centers, be it schools, colleges or Universities and institutes of higher learning. UNESCO has recommended the use of distance learning programmes and open educational applications and platforms that schools and teachers can use to reach learners remotely and limit the disruption of education. Moving from on-campus to remote learning raises several issues related to infrastructure at both ends, logistics, engagement, access, and suitable content.
WDF University describes the framework, methodology and technology for attention of different educational institutes, Governments, International agencies and investors.
Online education during and post COVID
A video shoot studio floor with facility for video conferencing
Prof. Dr. H. O. Srivastava
Audio production facility for online teaching
Framing methodologies for the global education
Emerging evidence provides some tantalizing glimpses of framing methodologies for the global education. Onus likes on Institutions and the Governments.
Vibrancy typically found on campuses such as video options for counselling, online mindfulness classes
Governments, International agencies and Investers will need to consider increasing the infrastructure of institutions of learning. This will include setting up additional institutions, providing facilities and technology for remote teaching. This will need training of faculty to adopt to new mode of imparting education, interactivity, evaluation etc. They will also need to provide massive support to students to succeed in a remote learning environment, by providing finances for necessary equipment and internet access. States can offer stipends for internet access and laptop rentals or purchases, or they can directly procure and lend equipment for under-resourced students.
Various methodologies for primary schools, colleges and Universities are suggested here. WDF University will be happy to coordinate and help in this endavour.
Education Methodology During and Post COVID for Primary Education
Moving to remote learning
School closures impact not only students, teachers, and families, but have far-reaching economic and societal consequences. The impact is more severe for disadvantaged children and their families, causing interrupted learning, compromised nutrition, childcare problems, and consequent economic cost to families who could not work. While the epidemic is still affecting the population all over the world and no effective vaccine in site, countries have started to reopen their schools. In India more than 200,000 parents have decided not to send their wards to schools endangering them to the risk of COVID till there is a single case of COVID or a vaccine is available. Moving from on-campus to remote learning raises several issues related to infrastructure at both ends, logistics, engagement, access, and suitable content. This is a massive challenge for schools.
Strategies for primary schools
School faculties are using varied methods for imparting lessons such as sending scanned notes via email or WhatsApp or using Webinar.
The virtual classes or on-line education can use radio (Community or Internet) to provide audio classes, Web Portal, web-based audio delivery, or a combination of all these with interactivity using WhatsApp, Google meet, WebEx etc. The videos links given here to showcase a solution. In addition, schools can play a role in scaling outreach, such as through mobile counselling, online mindfulness classes, and other applications and tools. Institutions will need to be much more proactive about their communications with students and their parents. Students will have questions, so institutions should develop and deploy an easy-to-use student portal that addresses commonly asked questions on eligibility, deadlines, and eligible expenses, with links to a simple application portal.
Those with learning disabilities or accessibility needs require particular attention. The priority should be to design specific approaches to suit each need. For example, institutions can record courses and add closed captioning, so that students who are hearing impaired or have auditory processing delays can keep up.
A webinar discussion with Professors and Experts of Agriculture University, Kota, Govt. of Rajasthan (India) about the methodology of remote teaching and learning
Methodology for adoption of technologies for higher learning
Global Education during and post COVID
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to take a massive toll on lives and livelihoods of people around the globe. The pandemic impacted educational institutes worldwide, resulting in almost total closures of schools, colleges and universities and affected about 98.6 percent of the world’s students. 1.3 billion students around the world could not attend school or university. Universities, world over have been severely impacted due to pandemic. Many Universities have started use of distance learning programmes and use educational applications to keep them afloat. They are worried if students would like to enrol in expensive Ivy League Universities for remote learning devoid of campus experiences and personal interaction with faculty members. Harvard University has reduced the seats from 900 to 700 in their MBA classes starting from 2021-22. Moving from on-campus to remote learning needs several issues to be addressed seriously ranging from creating interactive content, setting up technical infrastructure by the Universities, logistics, engagement, access, and delivering everything for which students pay for the expensive education in renowned Universities.
Universities keen to open quickly
School closures have far-reaching economic and societal consequences that impact students, teachers, and families. The impact has been very severe for disadvantaged children and their families, interrupting learning, compromised nutrition to children. The families got disrupted, could not work or lost the job. It must also be accepted that private Universities need funds to continue paying to faculty, administrative staff, continuing research works and for upkeep and maintenance. They can’t afford to keep the University closed for the complete session. As such many Universities are keen to open quickly while the pandemic is still on rise. UNESCO has also recommended the use of distance learning programmes to limit the disruption of education. On the other hand, institutions are lacking accommodation for maintaining social distances in the classes. The parents and students both are afraid to resume studies. In India, 200,000 parents have petitioned the Government not to open the institutions till there is a single case of CORONA in the country. In institutions, there is no way to accommodate the students in the available spaces, maintaining the social distance. The situation is more complex because of great exodus and shift of population from urban to rural areas in places like India. Many students from India are postponing their program for enrolment in foreign Universities. The situation is for wait and watch.
Until the COVID-19 crisis, online learning comprised a relatively small share of education. Now the emerging situation demands for all the institutions to setup infrastructure to prepare e-learning content and its delivery to improve student learning, engagement, and experience while operating remotely. Faculties are using varied methods for imparting lessons such as sending scanned notes via email or WhatsApp or using Webinar or video conferencing. Finance Minister of India announced start of DTH channels and 100 open Universities for education. These measures need a dedicated work of planning, design and development of serious content. Without these, none of the mode meets the learner’s requirements.
Responsibility of Institutions
Emerging technologies provide some tantalizing glimpses of framing methodologies for the global education. Onus likes on Institutions and the Governments. Institutions have to cater to:
• Innovative Content and delivery methodology (Annexure-1)(edutainment)
• Infrastructure for creation of e-learning content
• Engaging technologies Virtual reality, AI, Robotics
• Sense of community
• Vibrancy typically found on campuses such as video options for counselling, online mindfulness classes
Big or small, public or private, colleges and universities are rich in human talent. To succeed in this brave new virtual world, the key is to empower and redeploy this talent to address the most pressing needs. One way to start is by identifying, activating and partnering tech-savvy organizations with expertise in digital technologies and practices to build the infrastructure quickly and train the faculty and students to use online tools.
Responsibility of Governments
Governments will need to consider increasing the infrastructure at State run institutions. This will include setting up additional institutions, providing facilities and technology for remote teaching. This will need training of faculty to adopt to new mode of imparting education, interactivity, evaluation etc. They will also need to provide massive support to students to succeed in a remote learning environment, by providing finances for necessary equipment and internet access. Recently, a student of 9th standard in Kerala (India) committed suicide due to not being able to cope with remote learning in absence of a smart phone. States can offer stipends for internet access and laptop rentals or purchases, or they can directly procure and lend equipment for under-resourced students.
The video link given below discusses the needs, methodology and actions.
Long Term Dividend and opportunity
The above proposal has many long-term dividends. The e-learning content thus built has long self-life and can be used for several years till the course curriculum is revised. Absence or sudden resignation of a teacher does not affect the institution. Less infrastructure is required in institutions. Even for courses needing lab work, limited attendance of students will be required in institutions resulting in reduced exposure of COVID. Institutions can serve a larger area and more students may be on roll.
There are lot of possibilities of cooperation for both renowned foreign and IVY Universities and emerging economies like India for collaboration and cooperation. The strength of expert professors and faculty, excellent labs and exposure of foreign universities on one hand and the strength of beautiful natural almost COVID free places like Ladakh, Mizoram, Goa etc, highly skilled teaching and software professionals who can make excellent absorbing content using AI and other tools for remote learning, economies of operations in India, availability of students who will love to have part classes in India and part abroad on the other hand provide immense opportunity. The locations of higher learning centres namely Ivy league in USA, famous Universities and institutions in Europe may partially shift to more affordable places like India. There is great opportunity and potential of earning billions by educators and investors by providing high quality, affordable, meaningful education in the new world order.
Case Study of Cooch Behar Panchanan Barma University, West Bengal, India
Cooch Behar Panchanan Barma University decided to supplement its class room learning with online audio /video /text courses with interactivity with the students. It also decided to provide online lessons to its thousands of students in 18 affiliated colleges /institutes located at different places in West Bengal. They approached World Development Foundation for consultancy and turnkey solution.
Facilities developed in the University
The facilities developed in the University are listed below.
This is the studio where professor records his lecture or delivers it live. Both audio and video recording facilities have been provided.
Announcer Cum Transmission Studio
This is the heart of the facility where recordings are stored in the archives for future transmission or live transmission is done using streaming media.
Production and post production facility
The facility is use for editing and post production of e-learning content. It has iMac high quality editing facility with necessary software for audio and video post production.
Online delivery of courses
The courses are delivered online using on-demand and streaming media. This can be received on any digital device including android mobile. A special android app with interactivity through WhatsApp has been developed. Please use the sample app given below. You can also download the App and install it on your mobile.