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Saturday, Aug 13, 2022
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How Free Online Courses Can Bridge the Indian Digital Divide

But when it comes to free online courses, teachers have the liberty to explain and teach important concepts in-depth, with the help of graphical representation.

How Free Online Courses Can Bridge the Indian Digital Divide
Sumesh Nair, Founder & CEO of Board Infinity
How Free Online Courses Can Bridge the Indian Digital Divide
outlookindia.com
2021-11-22T15:36:32+05:30

Over 250 million Indian children were unable to attend school due to the pandemic in 2020, and their academic growth came to a standstill.

This academic hurdle will have a long-lasting negative impact on students, teachers and parents alike. The latter two will struggle to determine students' growth alongside covering the missed curriculum.

Besides, one cannot ignore the fact that each student has their own pace. However, there is one solution that can eliminate all these problems: free online courses for students.

We have discussed here some benefits of free online courses for students, teachers and parents:

Better Accessibility:

Free online courses ensure that students can enrol in any grade for all mediums and subjects that they have missed out on or are interested. They can participate in their choice of subject or topic at any time and hour they want, in a hassle-free manner.

Similarly, students don't have to visit or be present at the school premises to complete their curriculum. Neither do the students have to pay additional school fees. Instead, all they need is a smartphone and a basic internet connection.

Now, internet connectivity in India is accessible in even the remotest of areas. Hence, students can continue their studies despite the pandemic. This accessibility gives more leverage to students, facilitating more students to indulge in these free courses.

Improved Assessment

Earlier, schools and universities had a standard curriculum and grading pattern. This restricted teachers to stick to the concise curriculum and outdated grading system.

But when it comes to free online courses, teachers have the liberty to explain and teach important concepts in-depth, with the help of graphical representation. This helps students learn important concepts, and a better understanding allows students to earn a good score.
Simultaneously, teachers can assess each student's progress through advanced digital tools.

With these tools, teachers can guide each student individually and shape their academic growth.

For instance, if a teacher notices that a student is struggling with a concept, they can personally guide them through it. The students can rewatch the videos and learn a major concept in parts for a clearer perspective.

The most interesting part about free online courses is that parents can examine the concepts and chapters that their kid has learned. They can also verify the same with the teacher.

Cross-culture

Free online courses for most languages allow students to explore different Indian languages and cultures.

For instance, a student in West Bengal can learn the basics of Tamil and Marathi if they are keen to know more about these languages. They can also learn more about the culture, history and lifestyle through these courses.

These online courses introduce students to new avenues that help them nurture as better and well-equipped individuals. Students gain a better perspective about their country and various states.

Collaborations

Educational institutions can contribute resources for seamless online courses. If private and government institutions collaborate, it can help educate students across India effortlessly.
50% of adolescents did not attend their secondary school in 2013-14 due to unknown reasons in India.

In India, every child has the right to education. Free online courses, if done correctly, can ensure that no child is deprived of education. A growing population of educated children will transform into leaders who will take the country towards a better future.

Although setting up a comprehensive program and curriculum for students across India could be challenging but is possible.

Suppose all institutions willingly involve resources and contribute significant time and effort. In that case, we soon will see a day where every child is getting educated through free online courses in India.

"It has been rightly said that knowledge holds more value when shared, then kept to yourself."
Conclusion

The silver lining is that the student can study anything—similarly, everyone wishes to learn or develop their knowledge.

A homemaker can indulge in these free online courses and complete her academics at her own pace. A grandmother who wants to learn about the country's cultural heritage because she got the opportunity to go to school! There is no right age to learn something new, so why not now?

India has a wide scope for growth, and education will act as a strong foundation for the overall development of a nation. Today's digital India can fill this educational gap with a smart solution: free online courses.

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