Around ten years ago, Bihar had a huge shortage of teachers and the student-teacher ratio was very critical. Most of the schools were single or two teacher schools, and on average the schools used to open for fewer than 100 days in a year.
Realizing that Bihar can only progress through development of its Human Resources, education was accorded the highest priority in the state in the year 2005-6. Recruitment of teachers was decentralized to Panchayati raj institutions and more than three lacs teachers were recruited as a result of the effort. At that time, too few trained teachers were available, hence two third of the recruited teachers were untrained. The responsibility of training these untrained teachers was given to Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Government of Bihar and IGNOU to provide quality teacher training in the state. Then, a two year D.Ed. training course through distance mode has been facilitated by IGNOU for subsequent three-four years, under which around 1.5 lac teachers were enrolled. But, in a national review it was found that this D.Ed. programme of IGNOU was not able to match the quality expectations of teacher training. Therefore, the Government of Bihar had decided to develop its own mechanism to train the teacher and the accountability was given to SCERT, Bihar.What is the D.El.Ed (ODL)?
The Diploma of Elementary Education (Open and Distance Learning), or D.El.Ed (ODL), is envisaged as a two-year course developed to train elementary school teachers who are already in service. It uses a blend of independent resource-based learning, face-to-face interaction, and ICT to enable teachers to learn and teach at the same time.
What is the purpose of the ODL programme?
The purpose of the programme is to:
Train a sufficient number of teachers to meet the need of the Right to Education Act - 2009. This initially involves the training of 39,100 unqualified serving teachers by 2016.The training will aim to:Help teachers to become more effective classroom practitioners;Contribute to nation building by offering the best learning experience possible to elementary school pupils.Build an enriched infrastructure for the teachers that can also support other needs, initiatives, and programmes in teacher education in Bihar.
What are the objectives of the programme?
The trained teachers of the programme should be better able to demonstrate proficiency in:
Selecting, adapting, and implementing appropriate teaching skills, methods and techniques
Integrating ICT effectively both in the classroom and in their administration of teaching and learning
Facilitating the teaching-learning process more effectively with evidence of improved pupil achievement
Engaging pupils in the co-construction of new knowledge in the classroom
Nurturing pupils to become better citizens
Managing the classroom effectively
Reflecting on and justifying practice with reference to applicable theory, policy and contextual realities.
How much time will the programme take?
The total duration of the D.El.Ed (ODL) is of two years, or an equivalent of minimum 1600 hours of learning in total. It is divided into four semesters with the following details:
Each semester is of six months duration (about 24 weeks).
One 6 days workshop at the beginning of each semester.
Minimum 20 days contact classes in each semester (100 hours), comprising 5 hours on every Saturday or Sunday at study centres located according to student distribution.
Minimum 400 hours of learning in each semester comprising all subjects.
How should programme study time be managed to maximize student success?
In general, distance education retention, pass rates and throughput are lower than for similar programmes offered on a full-time contact basis. Ongoing student support and timely constructive feedback on assessment are important ways to mitigate drop-out and stop-out challenges, but in addition it is important to make the learning process more manageable. In distance education provision, therefore, it is normal practice to offer registration and examination opportunities more often so that students are able to see faster progress, which is motivating, and so that they do not get overloaded, such as needing to write 10 assignments or write 10-12 examinations all in a short period. It is therefore decided that the programme delivery be semesterized so that teacher students need focus on only five to six papers at a time and can manage their study in a better way.