• By Dr.Urfana Amin Moharken
amagraha Shiksha involves a large number of teachers and other personal that need to be trained to bring out qualitative improvement in elementary education through IMPACT programme.To carry out the challenging task of training since face-to-face mode would not suffice during COVID-19. Hence, special online training program entitled IMPACT was created by NCERT, NEW DELHI to achieve the targets of training of grade II and grade III Teachers through zoom which focuses on supporting Jammu and Kashmir through distance learning/training inputs and materials.
IMPACT, at present a major component under Samgrah Shiksha, is expected to contribute significantly to the attainment of set goals. IMPACT is a UT level programme covering all the 20 districts of J&K up to elementary level and it has been in operation during the pandemic of COVID-19. NCERT as a national center for learning has taken up the responsibility of the Online Teacher Training programmes as a role model. It has redefined the online training intervention as a trendsetter in creating a platform for sharing experiences with the field level units in J&K teacher training programmes for grade II and grade III teachers.
In the context of recurrent training of Grade II and Grade III teachers, the greatest challenge is fear of the spread of virus of COVID -19 which does not allow the institution based face-to-face modality to meet this challenge, but the challenge is being met by organizing training through ZOOM app in online or distance mode. Online Zoom is one of the important delivery mode which aims at providing uniform training to a large and scattered target group. It is one of the popular mode for reaching the unreached and one of the importance weapon of education activities. To fully exploit the potential of online IMPACT training through zoom, teachers were contacted through WhatsApp groups and personal contact numbers and oriented regarding the installation and usage if the zoom app, so as to ensure smooth conduct of the training.Various mock sessions were organized and conducted to improve the efficiency of the learners.
In light of this district Ganderbal also conducted online teacher training program under the umbrella of IMPACT for Grade II and Grade III teachers through technically sound resource persons.The topics covered during the session include Pedagogy of various subjects and languages at elementary level,ECCE, IED and Girls Education. The main purpose of teleconference was to interact with the teachers and field functionaries and orient them on the progress under various interventions in education process.
Since the main aim of the programme was to build capacity of the target group on various sub-themes, i.e., Pedagogy of various subjects and languages,ECCE, IED and Girls Education, DIET Ganderbal undertook a feedback study of the programme to find out the strength and weakness, problems and prospects of the programme with the following broad objectives:
• To study the impact of online IMPACT training program on increasing the level of knowledge and understanding of participants at learning end.
• To study the pace of presentation and expectation of content during online training.
• To study the level of satisfaction of the participants on the language used by panelists and their responses to individual questions/queries.
• To study the perception of participants on TLM (Audio-Video materials) used by the patients during training programme.
• To study the mode of interaction and its availability of interacting with the panelists at learning end.
• To study the role of anchor and facilitator during teleconferencing programme.
Descriptive survey research design was adopted for the study.The sample of the study constituted 192 teachers registered at 2 learning centres,viz Kangan and Tulmulla. Observations were recorded at the learning end.
Feedback proforma developed by DIET Ganderbal on different aspects of the online teacher training was used. The proforma contains questions on various aspects of the training programme, which includes suitability of topic, content, TLM, panelists, role of anchor and facilitators at the learning end. The feedback proforma was supplied to the participants with a request to fill the proforma as per their perceptions about the programme in totality. The data thus collected were analyzed and tabulated on the basis of the objectives of the study. In order to analyze and interpret the data statistical techniques like mean and percentage were adopted.
ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION
Table 1: Basic concepts towards Online Teacher Training
S. No. Item Yes No
1. Have you ever attended online trainingprogramme? 44% 56%
2. Do you find online training as a mode to build your capacity? 84% 16%
3. Did you face any difficulty in attending the online teacher training programme? 56% 44%
Fifty six per cent of the participants attended the teleconference programme for the first time and only 44% of the participants reported that they had attended various online training programs earlier also.
Result Table I further reveals that about 84% of participants believed that it is a good mode to build their capacity. According to them, this mode is helpful in creating awareness within the community members for quality education.
Further 56% participants expressed their satisfaction in attending this programme and 44% of the participants faced difficulties in attending this online IMPACT training program. According to them, they were not informed well in advance about the online mode of the programme.
Table 2: Quality aspects of the programme
S. No. Item Good Average Poor
1. Selection of topic 44% 44% 12%
2. Selection of panelist 64% 36% —
3. Presentation of content 48% 52% —
4. Explanation of concept 12% 80% 8%
5. Use of language 84% 16% —
Above table shows selection of topic for the online teacher training- Pedagogy of various subjects including languages,ECCE,IED, and Girls Education, was viewed most appropriate by most of the participants. However, there were about 12% participants who viewed that the selection of the topic was not appropriate, sub-themes were not specified and no uniqueness was there in the objectives of the programme. A few reported that explanations could be more effective.
64% of the participants expressed their satisfaction with the selection of panelists. However, 36% of participants viewed that the selection of panelists of this teleconference was of average satisfaction. As far as the presentation of the content was concerned, 52% of participants viewed it as average, whereas 48% participants viewed it as very interesting and carried out in an influential manner. Regarding the explanation of the concept of topic, absolute majority of the participants reported it as average. 12% of participants were satisfied in the explanation of the concept of topic. Still 8% were not at all satisfied and rated it as poor quality.
84% of participants expressed that the language used by panelists was easy to understand whereas 16% of participants expressed that the language used by panelists in the online training program was difficult to comprehend.
Table 3: Pace of presentation
S. No. Item Fast Normal Slow
1. Selection of topic — 88% 12%
88% of the participants viewed that the pace of presentation of content was normal as required while 12% of them viewed it as slow. The pace of presentation was satisfactory.
Table 4: Quality of interaction
S. No. Item Very Satisfactory Average Unsatisfactory
1. Relevance of questions asked by the participants 36% 60% 4%
2. Response to questions by panelists 44% 52% 4%
Regarding the relevance of questions asked by the participants, 60% of the participants viewed questions as average and 36% are viewed these as very satisfactory. The questions/queries raised by the participants were relevant and appropriate.
As far as the responses to the questions by the panelists is concerned, 44% of the participants reported that the answers of the questions were very satisfactory and 52% of them reported as satisfactory. Majority of the participants at the learning ends was very satisfied with the answers given by the panelists.
Table 5: Impact of teleconferencing
S. No. Item Great Extent Some Extent Not at all
1. Increase in knowledge 36% 56% 8%
2. Enhancement in understanding and clarity of concepts 24% 72% 4%
Table 5 revealed that 36% of the participants expressed their satisfaction with regard to the gain in knowledge. 56% of them, however, reported that they were benefited to some extent as far as gain in knowledge was concerned. 8% of participants expressed that this online training could not help them gain knowledge on the topics covered. It poses some challenge to the efficiency of content preparation and presentation.
Further, data also revealed that 24% of the participants expressed their satisfaction to a great extent with regard to understanding and clarifying concepts. 72% respondents reported that they were benefited ‘to some extent’ in understanding and clarifying concepts. A few of them (4%) expressed that the online training program could not help them understand the concepts properly.
Most of the participants were dissatisfied with the availability of the mode of interaction. They reported that they had very limited access to android phone for communication with the panelists. At many learning ends the network was not in order. E-mail service was not available. Many participants had to borrow android phones for interaction. Hence, availability and functioning of communication devices pose challenge to make online teacher training a success.
With regard to the quality of the reception of video , 32% of the participants found it very satisfactory while 68% of them reported the quality of video as satisfactory. 40% of participants expressed that audio quality was very satisfactory while for about 60% the audio quality was satisfactory. On the whole, the reception was not a problem in this programme.
Data in Table 7 revealed that a majority of the respondents were not affected by the environmental conditions; hence, they were able to focus on the programme deliberations. A few participants reported disturbances in the environmental conditions. To retain the interest and concentration of the participants, proper environmental controls should be exercised.
Table 8 showed that the role of anchor person and facilitator was observed satisfactory. 64% of the participants expressed that anchoring by the anchorperson was good whereas 28% viewed that his performance was average. The participants had a mixed view about the role of the facilitator at the learning end. 40% of them reported that the role of facilitator was good in facilitating meaningful on air/off air discussions whereas 44% opined that it was average.
Conclusion and Suggestions
The findings of the present study have implications for planning, designing and executing the strategies for future online teacher training programmes. The analyses indicate that we have been able to orient the geographically scattered teachers’ population from one end through online mode. But our specific observations on the basis of the present study suggest strategic planning and implementation. The following conclusions and suggestions have been elucidated from the present study:-
Utmost attention must be given on preparation, presentation and explanation of subject matter/content.
Audio-visual material must be used to support/supplement the lecture.
Attention must be given on theme-wise presentation followed by interaction.
Topic of the subject must be need based and specified from the point of view of the participants.
Adequate and to-the-point replies of each query should be given by the panelists without avoiding any questions.
Participants must use simple and clear language with adequate pace.
Smooth network should be functional and available for interaction.
Environmental conditions must be controlled both at learning end as well as teaching end.
Network failure was demotivating for the participants.
Preparation and interaction were made simultaneously which caused repeated breaks in the presentations.
Resource persons should have full command over the subject matter.
The participants at the learning ends may respond to the questions asked or queries raised by the participants (interactions between or among learning ends).
The topics should be sufficiently elaborated by the panelists and separate time should be given to each topic.
The presentation session should be followed by interaction. They should not go together.
Author is a Resource Person, Master, BHS Dab, Ganderbal. He can be reached at email@example.com