Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant on Monday launched ‘Dishtavo’, an online channel for holistic teaching and virtual orientation for higher education. Sawant said that Goa would be the first state in the country to create such infrastructure for higher education.
The government is also planning to provide ‘e-mitra’ — a facility in which each student who does not get network will be paired with one who does, so that they can study through ‘Dishtavo’, which is an acronym (digital integrated system for holistic teaching and virtual orientation).
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A recent Goa University survey found that slow internet connectivity in the state’s remote areas is a major impediment in the e-learning scenario. “The majority (74%) of respondents were unsatisfied with the speed of the Internet,” TOI reported the survey as saying, adding that the situation was worse in rural areas.
Students can access Dishtavo content 24×7. Speaking at the inaugural function, Sawant said that no other state has taken such an initiative. Sawant said that Goa is also the first state to provide online training to its teachers, adding that this is “permanent infrastructure” for students.
Sawant said that many people have approached the directorate of higher education (DHE) to set up channels costing crores of rupees, but the DHE has done this with mere thousands. “I like the e-mitra concept of DHE which will help students study online.”
Around 3,500 videos have been recorded and around 1,000 have been uploaded on the channel. Around 2,500 videos are currently being edited. By the time the channel completes a year, 20,000 videos would be made ready, he said.
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Director of higher education Prasad Lolayekar said that if someone doesn’t have access to internet network, the student can download or upload videos as and when they’re in range.
He also said that a video script is available mentioning what’s expected of students, and what kind of assignments they’re expected to do. Reference books and other study materials are also on the channel, he said. “We want to cover the entire syllabus through online teaching,” he said.
Around 1,200 teachers from all colleges are involved in the project and have created the videos. Lolayekar said that a 55-member technical team has been formed, and added that Goa university and Chowgule college have helped set up Dishtavo — which is one of several DHE projects aimed at making learning accessible to all.
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