OPEN AND DISTANCE LEARNING (ODL) EDUCATION SYSTEM: PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE â A SYSTEMATIC STUDY OF AN ALTERNATIVE EDUCATION SYSTEM
|Saima Ghosh1, Joyshree Nath 2, Shalabh Agarwal3, Asoke Nath4
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The concept of open learning and distance education system focuses on open access to education and training to make the learners free from the constraints of time and place, and offering flexible learning opportunities to individuals and groups of learners. Open and distance learning (ODL)is one of the most rapidly growing fields of education now a days and it has substantial impact on all education delivery systems[1,2,3]. The new ODL system growing fast because of the development of Internet-based information technologies, and in particular the World Wide Web. The concept of ODL education came from idea where the learners and the teachers can not be in a class room and they should be separated by some geographical distance or may be they can not come close to each other to make the entire education system flexible. The distance education is not a new concept. In the late 1800s, at the University of Chicago, the first launched major correspondence program in the US in which the teacher and learner were at different locations. It is addressed to a wide range of potential partners, governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, specialized institutions, associations, industrial corporations, telecommunication companies, and others interested in this field, to seek their co-operation in meeting today’s urgent education and training needs, through open and distance learning. After the development of Radio during the First World War and television in the 1950s the mode of instruction outside of the traditional classroom had suddenly found new delivery systems. In the present days we have audio and computer teleconferencing which have influenced the delivery of instruction in public schools, higher education, the military, business, and industry. The objective of the present paper is to review open and distance learning in the context of present challenges and opportunities, examine relevant concepts and contributions, outline current global and regional trends, suggest policy and strategy considerations.