Teaching after the pandemic era has taken a whole new meaning with everything from the teachers’ skill-set to the perspective of education transforming by a lot. It has been a sudden paradigm shift and it is refreshing to see how far the educators have already progressed in this field.
Thanks to initiatives like Digital India and other e-services by the Government of India, online teaching has been achievable by most towns and cities in the country. Nonetheless, there are still some ways in which the virtual and blended learning modules can be improved, especially in this phygital world. Teachers can incorporate some novel strategies which will optimize their classes.
1. Using the online educational resources provided by the government:
MOOCs like SWAYAM, e-PG Pathshala and various e-libraries like Shodhganga, NDL, e-Shodh Sindhu provide access to a vast array of course materials and resources. Such resources can be used freely by teachers to enhance their coursework. Very often, the resources found here are virtually-friendly and can encourage the teachers to create similar modules for teaching online.
2. Creating videos that can be used multiple times:
Teachers are increasingly being asked by institutions to provide video recordings of their lectures in order to lessen their effort while taking multiples classes on the same topic or grade. Pre-recorded videos enable the students to cope up with the classwork at their own pace and refer to it whenever needed. It can also immensely help with the flipped-learning method.
3. Flipped-learning modules:
The flipped-learning module has proven to be quite useful in the phygital educational system as it enables the students to learn the classwork at home and discuss the ‘homework’ and projects with their teachers during college hours. This system works in online courses as students get much more involved with their group or individual projects and thereby contribute more in the class. If the coursework is pre-recorded by the teacher, it also saves their time during class hours.
4. Giving a percentage of the course-work as Self-Study:
Given that most youngsters today are very digitally advanced, there are many elements of certain modules that can be given for self-learning to improve the experience of both, students as well as teachers. Easy parts of the coursework that can be considered as basic knowledge or easily accessible to all can be allotted for self-study. This is to direct students towards understanding primary fundamentals of the course-work which can be discussed in class while concentrating more on the applications or elaborations of the significant components.
5. Making classes more interactive using digital tools:
Most of the online platforms which are used to teach are equipped with adages that can be used optimally to include all participants in discussions from time to time. If teachers learn how to use these applications and involve the maximum number of students, it will greatly enhance the quality of education and interactions during class. Keeping it interactive also encourages the students to feel connected with the class and lessens the feeling of being virtual. But this is easier said than done and needs some amount of proficiency with technology.
6. Making the time-table more achievable:
Unlike a normal physical classroom, the digital classroom relies heavily on the students’ capacity and willingness to participate in the activities of the class. In order to make the curriculum more achievable and participatory by the students, the coursework can be broken down into smaller units and more measurable outputs. The traditional evaluative structure focusses heavily on semester-wise exams and assignments. But, in order to ensure that students are at par with what is being taught, it is necessary to break down the evaluation into ‘bite-sized’ modules that the students can ‘consume’ periodically. The teachers can break down the module into achievable weekly, monthly and semester-wise modules that can be evaluated accordingly. This will ensure the continual engagement of the students and be more useful in checking their progress.
Techniques such as these can be implemented by teachers to improve the phygital education system. Of course, more and more teachers are finding newer and better ways to blend the physical and digital worlds and it will only be a matter of time before ‘blended learning’ becomes the normal pedagogic style in the entire world.
(This is a slightly modified version of an article originally published in BW Education. The original article can be found at http://bweducation.businessworld.in/article/Strategies-Teachers-Can-Optimally-Utilize-In-Phygital-Education-System-/25-01-2021-369519/)