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Awareness of Distance Education among School Children

-by Dr. S. Ganesan
(RD, IGNOU)
Normally the school children know the stages of education from first standard to 12th standard at school level.  Beyond school education, they have little knowledge about college / university level higher education.  Due to the remoteness and isolation of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, the exposure of Open and Distance Learning (ODL) System is minimum to school children.  Then, how to increase their awareness on Open and Distance Education system of learning?  By just asking following questions to school children, they will be sensitized towards distance education methodology of teaching-learning.
* Basic concepts of Distance Education and Open Learning: Are they same?
* Self-learning skills for distance learners:  Why necessary?
* Student support services in Open & Distance Learning system: How it is done?
* Reaching the Unreached Population for higher education:  Jail inmates can study?
* Flexibilities of ODL system:  Mention 8 -10 flexibilities.
* Role of National Institute of Open Schooling for school level education:  To complete 10th Std. or +2 Standard?\
* State Open Universities in India: Write about Tamil Nadu State Open University.
* National Open University - IGNOU: What is its organizational structure in ANI?
* Dual mode Universities: Mention few Centres of Directorate of Distance Education of Tamil Nadu Universities in ANI and the Courses
offered.
* Bachelor Preparatory programme of IGNOU: School drop-outs can study
BA/BCOM/BTS/BSW?
* Under-graduate (UG) degree courses offered in ODL system: List atleast 20-25  UG Courses
* Distance Education as 'Discipline': Write about M.A., in Distance Education.
* Jurisdiction of Universities: Which are the Universities having ANI under their Jurisdiction
* Recognition of degrees obtained from ODL system: Is it at par with regular College
* Modular pattern of Education: Write few lines about Lateral Entry system in admission
* Entrance tests in ODL:  It is conducted for all Courses?
* Gyandarshan - the Educational TV channel of India - in ODL system: Write 5-sentences.
* Credit System - Credit Transfer Process: Explain
* Higher education opportunities in ANI: List all regular colleges / institutes in ANI.
* Mobility of distance learners during study period: Anytime, anywhere is allowed?
* Academic Counselling, Video-class, and Tele-class: Write short notes on each.
* Drop-outs in ODL system: Who is called as 'Drop-out'?
* Web support services: Mention few services provided at IGNOU website.
* Online and offline admission procedures: What it means?
* Suggestions to IGNOU, RC, Port Blair: Write any five ideas.
Thinking on the possible answers, the school children will get some basic knowledge on Distance Education.  To create awareness on Distance Education, the Regional Centre of Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) at Port Blair is organizing Essay Writing Competition on 'Distance Education' during the summer vocation.  (The details are hereunder):
Topic:  Distance Education Opportunities in Andaman & Nicobar Islands Competition Details:   Hand written Mode Essay Writing; can be prepared at home also; Language of Essay:   Essay should be in English (or) Hindi language only Objectives: To create awareness about the Open and Distance Learning System among the School children (9 to 12 Standards) Words Limit:   within the range of 1200 to 1500 words; Diagrams / pictures/photos /graphs / tables / block diagrams etc. are permitted. A-4 size ruled or un-ruled plain paper; both side should be used for writing Essay;  Simple thread to tie-up the papers; use of plastic / binding file / plastic covers/ spiral binding/ stick cover etc. are not permitted; avoid plastics in any form for Essay Competition Eligibility of Participant: School students studying 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th standard in 2019-20 academic session.  One entry per Student is permitted.  Schools within Port Blair city limit only. Fees:  Free-Entry without any charges Period:  From 15th May to 15 July 2019 Last Date of Submission:  15th July 2019 Channel of Submission; Essay in sealed cover is to be routed, through the Principal of the School, to reach the IGNOU Regional Centre, Port Blair, well before last date.  (Student to Principal to IGNOU RC) Organizer: The Regional Centre of Indira Gandhi National Open University at Kannada Sangha Building, Mohanpura, Port Blair, A & N Islands.  Phone 03192-242888, 230111, rcportblair@ignou.ac.in Organizing Secretary:  Dr.T.R.Satyakeerthy, Assistant Regional Director, IGNOU, RC, Port Blair, Mobile: 9446372105 Evaluation: By a team of experts in distance education /English /Hindi; RC will coordinate.
Prizes: First, Second, Third Position and two consolation prizes in Hindi; similarly, for English Essay too (medals) Certificate:  Participation Certificate will be provided to all participants and special Memento will be provided to all participating Schools (as IGNOU-Associate) Certificate Distribution Function:  Will be in the Auditorium of Anthropological Survey of India (250 Seats capacity) Date will be end of July 2019 preferably on Sunday fore-noon. Chief Guest:  Secretary - Education or Director-Directorate of Education, ANI Administration Collaborators:  A joint venture of Directorate of Education ANI Administration,  All Principals of the Schools; National Institute of Open Schooling; Budget:  Nearly Rs.50,000/- estimated.
 By showing the alternative channels of higher education, even the 10th (or) +2 failed student will get his / her motivation to continue higher education through ODL mode.  Based on the success in the attempt of IGNOU, it will be expanded further in all parts of ANI and the periodical awareness camps will be organized throughout the year at various Schools in ANI.  Let the awareness spread widely and the academic benefit reach as much student population as possible in our Islands.

(The author is Regional Director of IGNOU, Regional Centre, Port Blair and can be reached at rcportblair@ignou.ac.in (M-8900936718)

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