Express news service
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The teaching-learning process in state higher education institutions is going digital with the adoption of a Learning Management System (LMS). The technological transformation will be facilitated by the Kerala State Higher Education Council (KSHEC) and the new digital university.
LMS is a software application for administration, documentation, tracking, reporting, automation, and delivery of courses and training programs. It is widely used in educational institutions abroad as well as in engineering schools and state polytechnics. From now on, colleges of arts and sciences will also be included in its scope.
The creation of infrastructure for the digitization of higher education institutions is part of the 100-day program announced by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. Following the announcement, a meeting chaired by Minister of Higher Education R Bindu set up an expert committee for its speedy implementation.
“The expert committee will oversee the implementation of the LMS platform in all institutions and organize the training of teachers and students. Simultaneously, digital devices and internet connectivity for students will also be provided,” said the Minister of Higher Education. The Minister stressed that bridging the digital divide is an important task while undertaking technological transformation.
“More than 300 higher education institutions are to report to the LMS which operates through the open source Moodle platform. This is a very expensive proposition if done at the facility level. By centralizing the system and taking care of the server and other requirements in association with the state data center, we can make it profitable. The institutions will only need basic facilities on their side, ”KSHEC vice-president Rajan Gurukkal told TNIE.
The LMS will be operated in smart classrooms at colleges and universities. Arrangements will be made for students to be able to connect from various locations to the smart classroom via digital devices when learning is to go online. This will come in handy on occasions such as pandemic induced lockdown.
“There will be a defined digital portfolio and teachers will be able to use various tools from it for the teaching process. The advantage of using such digital tools is that the creative involvement of the students can be ensured. In addition, the level of understanding of the students can also be easily assessed. This will make the whole process interactive, ”Gurukkal said. The process of implementing LMS in higher education institutions is expected to be completed within 100 days at a cost of Rs 10 crore.
He added that around 2,000 teachers have been trained as part of the digital transformation process.
Training of trainers will be provided to 800 other teachers who in turn will train their peers in LMS. Meanwhile, institutions have been urged to address the lack of digital devices among students. Various proposals, such as creating a pool of digital devices that can be borrowed by needy students, were also discussed.
Additional benefits of LMS
The performance of pupils and teachers in the teaching-learning process should be recorded
Facilitates collaborative learning among students through small study groups
Ensures the openness and transparency of the internal evaluation process
Improving quality through peer pressure among teachers and students