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Central Institute of Educational Technology, NCERT, New Delhi
State Institute of Education, Chandigarh
Educational Technology Lecture Series
February 27, 2009
Prof. D N Sansanwal
Ex Director, School of Education
Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya, Indore
[email protected]
Gurukul System of Education was in vogue in India. The main characteristics of Gurukul
System were dedicated and knowledgeable teachers, individualized and learner centre
teaching, and self-motivated students eager to learn. This system changed due to
increase in number of students. Consequently, the number of teachers increased. Some
teachers are born but rests of them have to be given rigorous training so as to develop
required competency to become a teacher. Teachers have been conscious about the
quality of their teaching. To enhance the quality, some teachers use teaching aids, like,
charts, models – static & working, specimen, slides, etc. because teachers are given
training both in preparation and use of Audio-visual Aids. It is a known fact that majority
of schools do not have appropriate teaching aids related to the school content. So
teachers have no facility to use A – V Aids during teaching. The use of A – V Aids get
further restricted due to unmotivated persons becoming teachers. Central Government
realized the need of improving quality of education through the use of Television wherein
most competent teacher teaches the topic with the help of most appropriate teaching
aids. This helped in improving the quality of teaching in schools having no teacher to
teach the subject, less competent teacher, schools having poor or no facility of teaching
aids, etc. Programmes offered through television were produced by different State
Institute of Educational Technology (SIET) in different languages. Even the Video
Instructional Materials were produced and made available to teachers; still majority of
schools did not make use of them. Some of the reasons were no facility of TV and VCR,
no electricity, TV and VCR not in working condition, not incorporated in the time table,
lack of initiation on the part of teacher and Principal, etc. Along with A – V Aids, the print
media has to go a long way in improving the quality of teaching and learning. Format in
which the textbooks were written was not beneficial for teachers and students.
Researchers started thinking and using different Theories of Learning for developing
Instructional Material. This gives birth to Programmed Learning Material based on
Operant Conditioning Theory
of Learning.
compared with that of Lecture Method or Conventional Method. Programmed Learning
Material alone as well as in combination with other methods for teaching different
subjects was found to be effective in terms of achievement of students (Bhushan, 1973;
Dewal, 1974; Pandya, 1974; Shitole, 1976; Kuruvilla, 1977; Patel, 1977; Sodhi, 1977;
Verma, 1977; Sansanwal, 1978; Mullick, 1979; Parlikar, 1979; Shah, 1979; Pandey,
1980; Seshadri, 1980; Shah, 1980; Trivedi, 1980; Inamdar, 1981; Man, 1981; Mavi,
1981; Suthar, 1981; Davies, 1982; Ravindranath, 1982; Menon, 1984; Choudhary,
1985; Gautam, 1986; Joshi, 1988; Thaker, 1993; Agashe, 1995; Shah, 2002; Pandit,
2003; Dubey, 2004 & Kaur, 2005). PLM was found to be as effective as Structured
Lecture Method in terms of achievement of students (Chandrakala, 1976; Govinda,
1976). Lecture Method was found more effective than Demonstration Method and
Programmed Learning Method (Ghetiya, 1999). Also students expressed favourable
opinion towards PLM (Govinda, 1976; Chauhan, 1973; Kuruvilla, 1977; Sansanwal,
1978; Mavi, 1981; Davies, 1982; Menon, 1984; Agashe, 1995; Shah, 2002; and Kaur,
2005). In addition to it, the developed Instructional Material was found to be significantly
effective in enhancing creativity (Sharma, 1995), in developing better understanding
about environment (Sharma, 2005) and in enhancing Reading Skills amongst students
(Danikhel, 1998) and Reasoning amongst students (Suri, 2002). The findings of
researches were in favour of Programmed Learning Material (PLM). The PLMs are no
more in use because the development of PLM is tedious as well as costly and time
consuming. The format of PLM has under gone a change along with name. Consequently,
Modules were developed in particular format. At present, the Print Instructional Materials
used in different Programmes offered by Open Universities are in Module format. All
above mention efforts could not improve the quality of teaching to the level of
satisfaction of teachers, students, parents and other stakeholders. Search is on for most
effective tools to be used by teachers for quality education.
The lust for quality is still on. This is the age of INFORMATION dominated by the Digital
Technology. The Digital Technology has influenced all aspects of human life. Education is
not an exception. Now the technology is in the process of change from Digital to Photon.
Shortly Photonic Technology will be available for the use of the society. At present
majority of devices are based on Digital Technology. One such device is Computer. The
Computer is an electronic device that has the capacity to store, retrieve & process both
qualitative & quantitative information fast and accurately. The computers were never
developed for improving quality of teaching – learning process. But researchers started
using Computers for teaching purpose. It gave birth to Computer Assisted Instruction
(CAI), Computer Managed Instruction (CMI), Computer Based Instruction (CBI), etc.
People started developing CAI for teaching different subjects at School as well as Higher
Education level. The developed CAIs were compared with the Lecture Method /
Traditional Method and found that the developed CAIs were significantly superior to
Lecture Method / Traditional Method in teaching different subjects (Hayes, 1987;
Perkins, 1987; Cates, 1988; Cohen, 1988; Karvelis, 1988; Lawson, 1988; Yates, 1988;
Bonk, 1989; Conlin, 1989; Drexell, 1989; Fillingim, 1989; Isler-Hamilies, 1989; Koza,
1989; and Prabhakar, 1995) Further, the Traditional method of Teaching was found to
be more effective in comparison to CAI (Hulick, 1987; Oates, 1988; Cosmos, 1988;
Benson, 1989; Park, 1990; and Clem, 1990). The Model of Supplemental CAI was found
to be effective in improving educable mentally handicapped students’ achievement in
Mathematics and Spelling (Ankney, 1987). Language Impaired Children benefited from
written format, like, dialogue with a computer (Ward, 1987). Setting goals, following
instructions, accessing information to accomplish the task, and evaluating performance
benefited students with learning disabilities when they were engaged with CAI activities
(McPherson, 1991). Older Adults successfully used the computer and were able to
improve their knowledge about Health with a CAI lesson (McNeely, 1988). CAI was
effective in Language acquisition (Edfelt, 1989) and teaching abbreviation (Edward,
1989). CAI had a positive impact on reading comprehension for average reader but not
for learning disabled readers (Trahan, 1989). CAI, Tutorial Retrieval Text, and
Programmed Lecture were equally effective in promoting learning (Whitakar, 1990). Use
of software improved achievement in learning calculus and did not cause damaging
effects when access was denied (Cunningham, 1991). CAI was found to be effective in
terms of achievement of Science Process Skills (Vensel, 1988), in increasing Metacognitive Writing Skills (Bonk et al., 1989), in teaching reference skills to seventh grade
students (Driscoll, 1990), in increasing the rate of the acquisition of School Readiness
Skills of pre-school children (Legenhausen, 1991) and in improving writing skill (PowellHart, 1992). In spite of benefit of CAI in different aspects of learning, CAI has not
entered into the Classrooms as most of the developed CAIs were not based on sound
Theories of Learning. People involved in developing CAI were not having the sound base
of Instructional Design. Secondly, the courses are changing, the schools also do not have
sufficient computer facility, teachers are not trained in the use of CAI, etc. The use of
Computers was not only for teaching but also for Psychological Testing, Evaluation;
database Management, Library Management, etc.
Networking of computers gave birth to Information Technology (IT). UNESCO considered
Information Technology as “Scientific, technological and engineering disciplines and
management techniques used in information handling and processing, their application,
computers and their interaction with men and machines, and associated social,
economical and cultural matters”. According to Smith & Cambell (1982), a mosaic of
technologies, products and techniques have combined to provide new electronic
dimensions to information management. This mosaic is known by the name of
Information Technology. OECD (1987) treated Information Technology as “a ter m – used
to cover technologies used in the collection, processing and transmission of information.
It includes micro-electronic and info-electronic based technologies incorporated in many
products and production processes and increasingly affecting the service sector. It
covers inter alias computers, electronic office equipment, telecommunication, industrial
robot and computer controlled machine, electronic components and software products.”
Darnton and Giacoletto (1992) defined IT as the systematic study of artifacts that can be
used to give form or description to facts in order to provide meaning or support for
decision making, and artifacts that can be used for the organization, processing,
communication and application of information. Sansanwal (2000) defined IT as the use
of hardware and software for efficient management of information, i.e storage, retrieval,
processing, communication, diffusion and sharing of information for social, economical
and cultural upliftment.
The Information Technology leads to development of Websites. Government, Corporate
sector, educational institutions, etc. started uploading the information on their websites.
It provides facilities for Chat, e-mail, surfing, etc. It opens up a new source of
information which increased the limitation of access to information. Prior to IT, people
were using only the print material for searching the information. It limited the search.
This limitation has been overcome by the IT.
IT was limited only to the textual mode of transmission of information with ease and
fast. But the information not only in textual form but in audio, video or any other media
is also to be transmitted to the users. Thus, the ICT = IT + Other media. It has opened
new avenues, like, Online learning, e-learning, Virtual University, e-coaching, eeducation, e-journal, etc. Third Generation Mobiles are also part of ICT. Mobile is being
used in imparting information fast and cost effective. It provides e-mail facility also. One
can access it anywhere. It will be cost effective. The ICT brings more rich material in the
classrooms and libraries for the teachers and students. It has provided opportunity for
the learner to use maximum senses to get the information. It has broken the monotony
and provided variety in the teaching – learning situation. The ICT being latest, it can be
used both at school and higher education levels in the following areas:
Diagnostic Testing
Remedial Teaching
Psychological Testing
Development of Virtual Laboratory
Online Tutoring
Development of Reasoning & Thinking
Instructional Material Development
Teaching at School as well as Higher Education, mostly, concentrates on giving
information which is not the sole objective of Teaching. Along with giving information,
the other objectives are:
developing understanding and application of the concepts
developing expression power
developing reasoning and thinking power
development of judgment and decision making ability
improving comprehension, speed and vocabulary
developing self-concept and value clarification
developing proper study habits
developing tolerance and ambiguity, r isk taking capacity, scientific temper, etc.
With the present infrastructure, class size, availability of teachers, quality of teachers,
training of teachers, etc., it is difficult to achieve all the objectives. Further, most of the
teachers use Lecture Method which does not have potentiality of achieving majority of
above mentioned objectives. The objectives are multi-dimensional in nature, so for their
achievement multiple methods should be used in an integrated fashion. At present ICT
may be of some use. It is a well known fact that not a single teacher is capable of giving
up to date and complete information in his own subject. The ICT can fill this gap because
it can provide access to different sources of information. It will provide correct
information as comprehensive as possible in different formats with different examples.
ICT provides Online interaction facility. Students and teachers can exchange their ideas
and views, and get clarification on any topic from different experts, practitioners, etc. It
helps learners to broaden the information base. ICT provides variety in the presentation
of content which helps learners in concentration, better understanding, and long
retention of information which is not possible otherwise. The learners can get
opportunity to work on any live project with learners and experts from other countries.
The super highway and cyber space also help in qualitative improvement of Teaching –
Learning Process. ICT provides flexibility to learners which is denied by the traditional
process and method. Flexibility is a must for mastery learning and quality learning.
On INTERNET many websites are available freely which may be utilized by teachers and
students for understanding
different concepts,
improving vocabulary, developing
Reasoning & Thinking, etc. ICT can help in preparing students for SAT, GRE, TOEFL, etc.
The common observation is that the quality of teaching in the classroom is on the
decline. More and more students are depending on the private tutorial classes. The
private tuition also has become a business. This phenomenon is not only in India but in
other countries too. There are about 800 students from USA who have enrolled
themselves for Private tuition in Mathematics. It means tuitions are also being
outsourced. This is being done through the use of ICT. There are students who fail to
understand certain concepts or retain certain information. This can be assessed by
introducing the diagnosis in the process of teaching – learning. Today, t his is not being
done. The reasons might be large class size, non-availability of diagnostic tests in
different subjects, lack of training, money and desire on the part of teacher, etc. This is
the age of technology. These difficulties can be easily over come with the help of ICT.
Sansanwal (2005) developed Computer Based Diagnostic Testing in Mathematics and
Sansanwal and Lulla (2007) developed Computer Based Diagnostic Testing in Chemistry.
Both these were tried out in CBSE affiliated schools situated in Indore. These developed
Computer Based Diagnostic Tests work well and helped the teachers as well as students
in identifying the gray area of each and every student. This can be put on the website of
the school and the student can access it from home also. The student can prepare the
topic / chapter and can take the test to find exactly what he has not understood? The
teacher cannot do this manually. The student progress can be monitored and his
performance can be improved. This will develop confidence in students and may change
their attitude towards the subject. It may also help in reducing the suicidal tendency
among students. Students may start enjoying learning. Further, the following are the
main advantages of Computer Based Diagnostic Test.
They do not require any special setting or arrangement. The only requirement is
computer systems and software.
The student can use it even from home if made available on school website.
They do not need any special assistance from teacher. Unlike the paper-pencil
test, it does not require paper setting and paper correction on the part of the
It saves time on the part of the teacher and students.
The feedback is given immediately after the test is over, which gives an intrinsic
reinforcement to the student.
The student finds it more interesting and motivating as compared to the paper-
pencil diagnostic test.
It can be updated from time to time.
It is economical in terms of money as it requires only one time investment.
There are some limitations of Computer Based Diagnostic Testing (CBDT). These are as
The learner might find it uninteresting or monotonous as compared to paper
pencil test.
The teacher might find CBDT difficult to administer if he / she is not a computer
It faces certain constraints, like, power cut, w hen it is being administered.
The learner might not take it seriously as he / she is used to the traditional paper
and pencil tests.
The development of CBDT is costly and tedious as compared to paper and pencil
The use of CBDT requires many computers which may not be available in all the
The learners who are not computer friendly might not feel at ease while giving
the test on Computer.
Certain technical problems might crop up which can distract the learner while
giving the test.
All teachers may not be competent to develop diagnostic test and especially
Teacher may not know computer languages that may be used for
developing CBDT.
Once the ICT is used for diagnosis purpose, the next step is to organize Remedial
Teaching Programme. The Remedial Teaching can be done by the teacher if some
common mistakes are identified. It may not be feasible to organize Remedial pr ogramme
for individual students. At this point, the ICT can be used for giving individual Remedial
Programme. It may be Online or off line. The instructional material if designed
specifically for meeting the individual needs of students and uploaded on the School
website and then the ICT can be used for providing Remedial teaching Programme.
At present the paper pencil tests are conducted for evaluating the academic performance
of students. These tests are conducted in the group setting. The content coverage is
poor and students cannot use them at their own. These tests are evaluated by the
teachers and they may not give feedback immediately to each and every student. It may
be due to this that students are unable to know their weakness and do not make any
attempt to improve upon them. The ICT can be made use in the evaluation. One such
attempt has been made by Sansanwal and Dahiya (2006) who developed Computer
Based Test in Research Methodology and Statistics. It has been titled as Test your
Understanding: Research Methods and Statistics. This test can be used by individual
student to evaluate his learning. The student can instantaneously get the feedback about
the status of his understanding. If the answer is wrong, he even can get the correct
answer. It goes a long way in improving the learning and teacher has no role to play in
it. It is left up to students to use it. Such tests can be uploaded on the website for wider
use. The students from other institutes can also make use of it. Not only the students
even the teachers can also use it to assess their own understanding of the subject. If
used by teachers before teaching the topic, they can prepare the topic properly. Such
software can be used for internal assessment. Thus, ICT can be used to improve the
quality of pre as well as in-service teacher’s training.
There are individual differences. Through research some correlates of academic
achievement have been studied. Rarely this information is used by school / college
teachers. Many of them even do not know about such researches. Even if they know,
they do not make use of it at the time of forming the groups for different academic
activities. One of the major reasons is that the school / college does not have a trained
psychologists who can assess the students on some of the correlates of academic
achievement. Further, the psychological testing is laborious and involves money and
time. Even the appropriate psychological tests are not available. This is the age of digital
technology. It can be used to digitalize all the psychological tests including the scoring
and evaluation. The same may be available on the website and students and teachers
can use them whenever required. Even student can use it individually and can share the
result with the teacher who can help the student to improve his academic performance.
The digitalized psychological tests will be easy to use and economical also. Thus ICT can
be used in psychological testing also.
The students understand better, if they do some practical related to the concept. It
makes learning easy and interesting. Laboratory helps in developing scientific temper.
But the fact is that practical are not done by each student in each school. There are
many schools which do not have laboratory. Sometime if laboratory is available, the
instrument is not available. The students are not given freedom to do experiments at
their own. Some good schools have laboratories all classes right from class I to XII. The y
allow students to play with the material available in the laboratory under the supervision
of teacher. The teachers also make use of laboratories during their teaching. At higher
level, the schools are asked not have practical where in animals are used. Animals based
practicals are done in Biology. In short, there are many restrictions under which the
students have to work in the laboratory. Now it is possible to have Virtual laboratory.
Once the Virtual Laboratory is developed, it can provide lots of freedom to students. The
students can manipulate any attribute or variable related to the experiment and can see
how it affects the outcome. Suppose a student wants to study the factors that can affect
the focal length of a mirror. At present in the real laboratory, the student cannot
manipulate many variables that he thinks might be related. But Virtual laboratory can
provide lots of freedom to the student. That is, student can take different types and
shapes of objects, change the distance between mirror and object to any extent, change
the thickness of the mirror, etc. and can see how such attributes affect the focal length
of the mirror. The Virtual Laboratory can be developed using ICT. It may be made
available at the door step of each and every students by uploading it on the Website.
Further each country can think of developing science Website which should give access
to Virtual Laboratory and it must be free of cost. Such a Website will not only help Indian
students but can go a long way in helping students of Underdeveloped and developing
The digital technology has broken the foundries betwee n countries. Human beings do not
feel any type of restriction in communicating with people all over the globe. The access
has become easy. It is a well known fact that all students do not understand all subjects
to the same extent. Some students find subjects, like, Mathematics, Physics, English,
Chemistry, Accountancy, etc. difficult. All educational institutions do have well equipped
laboratories and qualified & competent Faculty. Consequently students do feel the need
of academic support out of the school. Therefore, students go for tuition. These days
students from USA & other countries are enrolled in private tuition classes in India. That
is they are being taught Online. This has become possible only due to ICT. In Online
tutoring the student stays at his home. He logs in to his tutor through the use of
Internet and software. He can see the teacher who is in India and the teacher can see
the student who is in USA. The student asks the question and teacher replies it by
writing on soft board or using power point presentation. This interaction is normally one
to one. It has made the academic life of many students easy. This is how the manpower
available in India can be made use of other countries. Not only Online Tutoring but some
of the students do outsource their assignments. These assignments are completed by
the teachers of other country. Of course, academically it is not correct because the
purpose of giving assignment is not achieved. The student does not develop
academically and he may become weak in the subject. All this is happening just because
of ICT.
Web Based Instruction (WBI) can be developed with the help of ICT. According to WBT
Information Centre (1997), Web Based Instruction (WBI) is an innovative approach to
distance learning in which computer based training (CBT) is transformed by the
technologies and methodologies of the World Wide Web (WWW), the Internet and
Intranets. WBI presents content in a structure format that allowing self-directed, selfpaced instruction on any topic. WBI is media rich learning fully capable of evaluation,
adaptation and remediation, all independent of computer platform.
Ron Kurtus (1998) states that, in its strictest sense, Web Based Training (WBT) is the
communication of information over the WWW or Web with the objective of instructing or
training the user. WBT is actually is in the form of Computer Based Training (CBT) that
uses the Web or company intranet as the delivery medium instead of using disks or CDROMs. Both CBT and WBT are part of a larger classification called Electronic Performance
Support System (EPSS) that includes such communication forms as Online manuals and
Windows Help.
Sansanwal and Nawayot (2001) defined Web Based Instruction as a hypermedia-based
instructional programme that utilizes the attributes and resources of the WWW to create
a meaningful learning environment where learning is fostered and supported.
Sansanwal and Nawayot (2001) developed WBI for facilitating the Reasoning ability of
people. It was a website hosted for three weeks and 72 people belonging to countries,
like, Australia, Africa, America, France, Germany, India, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Nepal,
Singapore, Thailand and UK visited the developed website. Out of 72 visitors, 55 took
the pretest and 45 took both pretest and posttest. The reason of not taking the test was
that the WBI was in English and visiting people did not know English. So language can
be the barrier in WBI. The WBI was found to be effective in facilitating Reasoning Ability
amongst people belonging to different countries and age group. The WBI can be
developed in other subjects too. It will provide variety of Instructional Material to
students and they can choose that suits them best. This will improve the academic
standard. The WBI for developing Reasoning and Thinking will be very helpful for human
beings belonging to different countries and age. This is important in the present context
as most of the Educational Institutions do not pay attention to development of Reasoning
& Thinking. They do not have any period in the time table for Reasoning and Thinking.
These abilities once develop can help individual for solving the day-to-day problems. On
the whole it will improve the quality of life. Thus, ICT can be used for developing WBI for
facilitating Reasoning and Thinking.
At present there is a shortage of qualified and competent teachers in all most all subjects
at all levels. Not only this, even the instructional material available in the print form is
not of quality. This is because many authors have written on those topics that they have
never read and / or done research. Sometime the information given in the books is also
wrong. The book reading is not very enjoyable and does not help students in
understanding the concepts and retaining the information. There are many teachers who
are well known for the specific subject. Their lectures should be digitalized and made
available to all the users. It will enhance the quality of instruction in the classrooms. The
teacher can use them in the classrooms and can organize discussion after it wherein the
new points can be added both by the teacher as well as students. It will make the
teaching effective, participatory and enjoyable. Sansanwal (2006) has done this.
Sansanwal has developed digitalized lectures on Research Methodology and Statistics
and has used it for teaching this subject at master’s level. Other researchers are also
using it. Of course, digitalized lectures will have their limitations of revision and inbuilt
interaction. These lectures can be uploaded on any website and students & teachers can
access any lecture they like.
Another form of digitalized lectures is e – content. The CEC is making efforts to develop
e – content material in different subjects for the benefit of diverse users. The competent
teachers can develop e – content in their own areas of specialization. This has lots of
potentiality to bring quality in teacher education. The ICT can be used in developing
Instructional Material and e-Content.
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