How Pandemic changed the Education System- Future of Online Education
2020 was probably one of the most looked-forward years in human history. Towards the end of 2019, but social media was flooded with posts claiming 2020 to possibly be the best year in our lives. Most of us decided to go on trips that we earlier kept avoiding, another major lot planned their graduation parties. But the reality was completely different from the expectations that we had.
What should have been one of the best years of our lives turned out to be the worst that most of us had ever been through. Just a few months into 2020 and the entire world was hit hard with the Covid-19 pandemic, pushing the entire world into a lockdown. The first few days mostly felt like a boring monotony but once we saw the brutality of the pandemic, most of our loved ones had already succumbed to it. What seemed like a minor cough and cold went on to claim many lives around the world, and is still doing so.
The pandemic, however, changed a lot of things, some even for the better. Thanks to the lockdown, people got a chance to reconnect with their families, to live the nostalgia of the bygone days. With everyone at home and no factories or vehicles running, pollution was at an all-time low. Most of us even managed to gain touch with nature, thanking her for her bounties and apologizing for all the harm caused. But the major change initiated by the pandemic is the introduction of an online learning management system.
The Pandemic and Education
The pandemic had put a hold on many basic human activities like education, social gatherings, religious congregations, etc. However, education was not something that can be put on hold for long. So, after an initial pause of some months, online learning was introduced to help the students continue learning from their homes.
Initially, it was a lot difficult. Many students and teachers had to struggle with network issues. Some people also faced major losses as they did not have access to technological devices like smartphones and laptops to attend classes on. But many NGOs and notable personalities came up to help the poverty-stricken with devices. Later on, the government also chipped in. Thus within no time, online learning became the new norm, all thanks to the pandemic.
However, an online learning management system was introduced as just a temporary measure as everyone believed that the pandemic would last for just a few months. But here we are, almost two years into the pandemic, still attending online classes. Thus, the educational institutions decided that exams could not be put on hold as there was no guarantee as to when the pandemic would end. Thus, online learning became a full-time thing as several students even graduated through this learning management system.
Pros and Cons of Online Learning
There are always two sides to a coin. It is the same with all other concepts and things in the universe, be it technology, any activity or online learning.
As the pandemic had taken over the world, an online learning management system had become the need of the hour. It helped the students avoid the potential threat of taking a needless gap year, and helped them continue learning. Online learning also made the learning process easier and more efficient as children could now learn from the comfort of their homes. The efficacy of learning gets increased as teachers can take the help of several learning tools to make concepts clear for the students.
The students also learned to study without the constant support of the teachers, thus reducing dependency. And also if children require some help, there is increased scope of communication through online learning. It also helps to increase interaction levels among the students and teachers. There is no need to get up at some ungodly hour and travel hours to get to college. Plus, the pandemic required people to maintain social distance to avoid getting affected by the virus and online learning provided just that to the students.
The one disadvantage of the learning management system in online classes was the breaking away from traditionally acquainted classroom settings. A physical classroom is what students are acquainted with since childhood and thus, learning is often associated with the classroom. But that classroom isn’t present in online learning and this can bother the attention of a lot of students. Most of the students find it difficult to concentrate in the absence of a physical classroom atmosphere, in the physical presence of teachers and classmates.
There is also a potential threat concerning cyber security, especially for the younger students. We never know when they would click on a phished mail or some fraudulent software. Spending a lot of time online might also lead to severe eye problems and is also believed to be associated with stemming depression in children.
Future of Online Education
With the 21st century learning towards digitalisation in most sectors, digitalisation of the learning management system is something that came unprecedented, but for the good. Introduction to online learning has been beneficial for people that tend to opt for homeschooling due to one or the other reason. Plus, it also empowers people to learn at their own pace while also being involved at a job or to pick up from where they once left.
Thus, with a little work on the cons, online education sure has a bright future ahead.