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Education for Knowledge Era: Open and Flexible Learning

Santosh Panda (Editor) Suresh Garg (Editor)
Synopsis Education is an organic entity. It has evolved to meet the emerging needs and demands from time to time. Starting from the 'Gurukul System', it graduated into the 'Classroom System'. With the realisation that education is a resource for socio-economic development, the demand for life-long learning, Education for All as well as higher education brought education to the centre stage as never before. This generated pressure on the higher education system. Fortunately, the developments in the art and science of communication and its application to classroom instruction came in and ushered in the 'distance education' as a viable mode to cater to large numbers. The ivory towers have been thrown open and education has changed from craft to technology. The transaction of educational curriculum using technology marked the inauguration of 'New Era' in education, which essentially constitutes the 'third stage' of development in education. The emergence of knowledge as a resource - that is renewable and can compensate for the absence or inadequacy of any natural resource -stands out as the event of the twentieth century. The use of tools such as computers, CD-Roms, E-mail and Internet has now enabled offering of flexible learning, which is learner-centric. In these years of rapid changes, focus has shifted to the information highway, and open and flexible learning has come of age with possibilities of strategic partnerships between institutions. The virtual classrooms and virtual universities are viable realities of the future. With the capacity to adopt flexible teaching-learning strategies, providing high quality education and ensuring equity in educational opportunities is a distinct reality. Though the open university system has a history of only about 30 years, so much has happened so soon that leading experts in the field now believe that open/flexible education is the 'wave of the future'. This book, originating from the keynote and special addresses of Professor V.C. Kulandai Swamy, describes and analyses critically the growth and development of Open Distance Learning system to address issues of access and equity, coordination and management, collaboration and networking, funding and cost-effectiveness. The author strongly believes that 'we must do today's job with today's tool; if we do today's job with yesterday's tool, tomorrow we would be out of business'. The present volume is dedicated to this belief.
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About the authors

Santosh Panda

Santosh Panda is Professor of Distance Education and Director, Staff Training and Research Institute of Distance Education (STRIDE); and Head, Inter-University Consortium for Technology-Enabled Flexible Education and Development (IUC-TEFED), Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), Dr Panda has previously served as Director, Research and Policy Division, Association of Indian Universities (AIU) (1994-1997). He was a Visiting Professor in 2004 and in 2005 at the Manchester Metropolitan University, UK and in 2004 at the University of London, UK: and in 2003 was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, USA. As founding head of IUCTEFED, he has been responsible for initiating policy formulation and system-wide implementation of new educational media and technology focusing particularly on interactive multimedia, online and blended learning, and faculty development toward effective transition from traditional distance learning to blended and online learning. Dr. Panda has published 16 books, 32 book chapters, and 48 articles and research papers nationally and internationally; and is Founder Editor of a referred international journals Staff and Educational Development International; co-Editor of internationally referred Indian Journal of Open Learning; Editorial Board Member of Canadian 'Journal of Distance Education', 'International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning and professional Development', 'Malaysian Online Journal of Instructional Technology', American 'International Journal of Instructional Media'. He has consulted and conducted programmes for UNESCO-IICBA and UNESCO-China; World Bank and Global Distance Learning Network; British Council; Commonwealth of Learning; UNDP; Ford Foundation; IDRC; Governments of Lesotho, Nepal and Nigeria; and for capacity building of Indian government bureaucrats on distance training sponsored by the UNDP and the Government of India.

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Suresh Garg

Suresh Garg is a Professor of Physics and currently Pro-Vice Chancellor, Indira Gandhi National Open University, New Delhi. He taught Physics in Hindu College, University of appointed Director, School of Sciences in the University. He has been Commonwealth distance Science Expert at the University of the South Pacific, Fiji from 1996 to 1998. He is member of several national and international professional bodies like CASTME-Asia, and ICTP-India. He is serving on academic, research and management boards of several universities in the country. He has co-authored two books in Physics, edited three books on distance education, and published several research papers in national and international journals of repute. He is the chief Editor of Indian Journal of Open Learning published by IGNOU; and since 2005, he is on the Editorial Board of the AAOU journal. He was an Editor of the Global e-Journal of Open, Flexible and Distance Education from 2001-2004, and Guest Editor of Staff and Educational Development International. He has travelled abroad widely to countries like China, South Lorea, South Africa, UK, France, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Australia, Thailand, Mauritius and spoken on various topics. IGNOU has broadened its international networking particularly in Africa, SAARC national and Middle East with his efforts and guidance at the International Cell. He was the academic content coordinator (Honorary) of South Asia Foundation, Which is engaged in the spread of peace, cooperation, understanding through education and sustainable development among the people of South Asia. He was team leader of UNDP-DOPT project for capacity building of India Bureaucrats through distance learning.

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Bibliographic information

Title Education for Knowledge Era: Open and Flexible Learning
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2002
Edition 1st ed.
Publisher Kogan Page India
Language: English
isbn 8175541784
length xii+167p., Tables; Figures