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Sunday, September 27, 2020
Education News

Education during COVID-19 and Hurdles in E-learning

Poverty

As technology or e-learning is all set to become the viable intermediary of teaching-learning process, its implementation is not without roadblocks. As MHRD and UGC have streamlined digital education, its implementation is yet to be without practical limitations. Although schools and colleges have framed faculty training policies and workshops, teachers and students continue to rue about dubious software programmes, malpractices and theft of information on the virtual channels. Most of the students grapple with time slots allotted non-availability of books. Approximately 60 million students across the globe are homebound and many belong to remote regions with poor internet coverage. Students with disability find it hardest to cope with online classrooms. As per data released by Office for National Statistics in May 2015, 27 percent of disabled adults have never operated the internet unlike 11 percent of non-disabled adults.

No Internet Access in Remote Regions

Since television and radio are yet to be applied for e-learning, students from remote areas are struggling with or outside the peripheries of online classes. iCloud or YouTube reek of class privileges to these students.  “I teach in a college where many are first-generation learners, coming from low-income households, who don’t have devices with advanced storage capacity. Now, I hear some teachers are holding Zoom classes and that sounds lovely in elite institutions. But my realities are different considering the students I teach,” commented Swati Moitra, a faculty in one of the Kolkata college that has a chunk of students coming from economically backward areas.

No Virtual Labs

The lack of labs has taken a toll on students who are pursuing research or subjects that require advanced, tangible equipment. Theories accessible online, mostly, are poor substitutes for university labs. The acute shortage of books online for higher education and research studies have accentuated the –learning crisis. Most of the students are, additionally, unequipped and in no possession of devices to hoard the content generated by teachers.

 A few schools are also under-equipped to implement online learning in a way that it assesses behavioural shifts in students, learning psychology and learners’ progress with lessons that were previously feasible in classrooms with hand-stitched methods. Many students are increasingly losing motivation besides losing sight of what they are gearing up for.

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