Besides the physical and psychological benefits that a digital education can offer, there are also some important aspects of digital education that people should be aware of. Among these are the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on digital education in India and how to evaluate the teaching and learning process through the digital mode.
Physical and psychological health benefits
Considering the increased screen time of students, it’s surprising how little time is spent on activities that are actually beneficial for health. Taking the time to engage in physical activities like running or hiking can provide benefits for physical and mental health. These activities have also been shown to promote cognitive function.
However, it’s not just the students who are taking the health cues from technology. Teachers are being pushed to deliver quality learning without face-to-face time. Teachers are also under stress, and this increased workload can lead to mental health problems. It’s no wonder that depression is a problem amongst youth.
There’s a lot of debate over whether or not digital education has improved the lives of children. The technology used in these programs is no doubt a good thing, but there is a growing concern that overuse of it may have more negative impacts than positive ones.
Accessibility to the online platform
Providing accessibility to the online platform in digital education is essential for creating an inclusive environment online. Students with disabilities may not be able to participate in online learning unless accommodations are provided. There are also challenges that teachers and course designers may face when developing an online course.
The first challenge is the creation of content that is accessible. Content should be designed to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities, including individuals who are visually impaired. Ensure that your online content follows the four principles of accessibility, also known as POUR.
Another challenge is the use of technology. Online learning management systems (LMS) such as Blackboard Inc. are widely used in universities worldwide. However, many are not designed with accessibility in mind. This can result in unintended barriers to learning.
Built-in logic in the learning platform
Using built-in logic in the learning platform isn’t something new. Traditionally, learning platforms have embraced digitization of existing content. But with new technologies, like artificial intelligence (AI), and data analytics, there are new ways to create more personalised learning experiences. Using the LMS as a hub for learning can enable learners to interact with the platform in a more personalized way. Using data analytics to help personalize learning can help to make the experience more enjoyable.
Using the LMS as a hub can help learners to make the most of the countless learning resources available. It can also help to provide learners with a streamlined social learning experience. While it’s true that an LMS can be connected to many ecosystems, the most important thing is that it can be used to deliver insight.
Evaluation of the teaching and learning process through the digital mode
Whether you are an educator or a student, there are many resources you can use to evaluate the teaching and learning process through the digital mode. For example, if you are interested in the evaluation of e-learning, you might wish to explore the TPACK and SAMR frameworks. These frameworks are both useful for informing the design of a digital capability programme for teacher education.
The TPACK framework describes the relationship between pedagogical, content, and technological knowledge. It emphasizes the importance of blending of these three to enhance learning performance. It acknowledges the complexity of maximizing the use of digital technologies in the classroom. However, it is limiting in its use for developing a broader conceptualisation of teacher digital competence.
The SAMR framework, on the other hand, provides descriptive ‘aim points’ for teachers. This is a pragmatic approach that has been widely adopted by schools. However, it does not account for the necessary technological changes that teachers must undergo in order to effectively integrate digital technologies into their classrooms.
Impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on digital education in India
Among the many effects of the Covid-19 pandemic was its impact on digital education in India. It had far-reaching implications on existing educational inequalities worldwide. It forced educational policy makers to optimize their e-learning systems and forged a strong connection between educators and their communities.
The pandemic forced educators to transition from conventional face-to-face learning pedagogies to remote virtual platforms. The transition has brought about a paradigm shift in the way educators deliver quality education.
Covid-19 also sparked renewed attention to the digital divide. The digital divide was originally defined as differential access to technology. It was not about haves and have-nots, but about systematic differences in the digital society. Originally, it was used to illustrate a disparity in access to computers between students from different races.