“Learning is more effective when it is an active rather than a passive process.” — Kurt Lewin (1890-1947)
How e-learning originated is not known to the world. It is suggested that this very term originated during the 1980’s at the same as another delivery mode online learning. This is when the computer evolution happened and it completely changed the traditional way of looking at classroom learning. Aristotle said, “What we have to learn to do, we learn by doing,” and Einstein echoed, “The only source of knowledge is experience.” Confucius said, “I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.”
What is e-learning? E-learning is a computer based educational tool that enables you to learn anywhere and at any time. Internet plays an important role in e-learning today, although in the past CD-ROMs were used. With technology increasing at a rapid pace it has bridged the gap between online tools available for learning. E-learning lets you share materials, conduct webinars and communicate with professors on a regular basis via message forums. E-learning provides students with the ability to add learning to their daily schedules, effectively allowing even the busiest person to further a career or gain more skills.
The greatest developments in education happened since the launch of the internet. Since people are familiar with the latest technologies it is easier for people to get accustomed to this new age of learning. Message boards, social media and other online communication allows people to keep in touch and discuss course related matters making it a community. With the quick changes in technology, course material need to be updated and readily avaible for its learners. The more things change, the more they remain unchanged. Learning has always been humanity’s lattermost survival skill, just like humans survived during the ice age or learnt to rise after the downfall of the markets and the economy.
E –learning is growing at a rapid pace and analysts suggest that it will reach $107 Billion in 2015, with countries like India dominating this industry. Studies show the Internet has transformed the online learning sector in recent times with an elevation of educational academies, corporate houses as well as training centers sharing expert thoughts and knowledge through online programs.
A Coursera study that evaluated over 50,000 Indian students reported better outcomes in the country than the global average. The online courses have benefitted 90 % Indian students, a 3 % higher than the global average. The study done by Coursera and researchers at the Universities of Pennsylvania and Washington, was carried out on students who had completed a course on coursera that was for three months or more.
A new study by LoudCloud Systems on e-learning research and development firm estimated the e-learning market size in India will grow from $20 billion to $40 billion by 2017. The firm noted that the online education and learning will change drastically in the next three years because online education is not only attracting the student community in India, but a number of businesses across different industries including IT, BSFI and manufacturing. Bajaj Financial Services, TVS Infotech and KPIT Cummins are some of the businesses that have adapted to the trends of e-learning.
The future of e- learning is enticing. S2S teaching platforms (2020 A.D.) states that students learn better and retain more when they actively interact with each other. It plays on the concept of mixed age and ability classrooms and makes use of individual learning to associate different students with peers who they can mentor or teach. Algo-generated lessons (2030 A.D.) is a natural outcome of the push for big data and data mining.Apart from those, new tools such as attention and eye tracking will be used where the student’s input can be monitored and quantified.Hence, lessons can be created that match the student’s targeted learning levels, prior knowledge, and preferred methods of learning. Neuro-informatics (2040 A.D.) Though the current state of the field is far removed from the 2040 applications projected, neuro-informatics will allow an understanding of how the human brain functions and how optimization of learning can be done by taking into consideration the individual’s brain structure. It is possible that Matrix-like technology will be developed that will allow information to be uploaded to the human brain without the need for any system of education.
Today e-learning is perceived as a low cost effective training method. The future of e- learning uses internet technologies like virtual classrooms and self paced instructions by using different applications such as user generated content, digital collaboration and web learning. With the rapid changes in technology and devices there is no doubt that e- learning is the ultimate of the e-world we are submerged in.