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Status of Open Education in Pakistan


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The workshop explored the status of open education in general and MOOCs in particular in Pakistan. In 2011, the modern MOOC movement started, when the first standard MOOC was launched. In few years, MOOCs have received immense coverage in academia, industry, and media. Students can learn any imaginable subject from the world’s top professors and industry experts.

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Status of Open Education in Pakistan

  1. 1. Status of Open Education Dr. Sajid Iqbal and Dr. Ammad Hassan Department of Mechatronics & Control Engineering Department of Transportation Engineering University of Engineering & Technology (UET), Lahore. 05 Mar, 2018
  2. 2. United Nations (UN) has listed education among its millennium development goals (MDGs). Dr. Richard Smalley cataloged education and population as the top ten problems, which humanity will be facing over the next 50 years.
  3. 3. 20 Years ago
  4. 4. In 2050, Pakistan will become the 6th largest nation in the world by population.
  5. 5. The cost of college textbooks has risen rapidly, forcing many students to forgo required materials due to the expense. 65% of students report not purchasing a textbook because of its high price. College textbook prices rose 82% between 2003 and 2013, approximately triple the rate of inflation in overall consumer prices (CPI) during the same time (27%) Digital alternatives have offered little financial relief, and are typically sold on a subscription basis with heavy restrictions on access.
  6. 6. Macmillan Dictionary defined a MOOC as, “a course of study offered over the Internet which is free and has a very large number of participants” . MOOCs have generated a paradigm shift in online education by presenting free high-quality education to anyone, anywhere with Internet access.
  7. 7. MOOCs became famous, when in the fall of 2011, a professor of Stanford University conducted a course on Artificial Intelligence. Enrollment quickly reached 160,000 students from 190 countries; only 23,000 finished it. 2012: Times year of the MOOC
  8. 8. According to IEEE CS 2022 report, with nanotechnology and quantum computing, MOOCs are amongst top ten technologies that could change the world by 2022. The Report predicted that professional degrees from accredited universities will be available through massive online format before 2022.
  9. 9. More than 35 million people have themselves enrolled in MOOCs, and 2015 enrollments figures are twice higher than that of 2014. 1800 new courses have been announced, taking the total number of courses to 4200 from over 550 universities in 2015................ PAKISTANI UNIVERSITY?
  10. 10. In 2012, the CEO of MOOC platform—Udacity, Sebestian Thrun forecasted, “In 50 years, there will be only 10 institutions in the world delivering higher education and Udacity has a shot at being one of them”. Peter Drucker (the founder of modern management) said in 1997, “The current setup is doomed, at least so far as higher education is concerned. Thirty years from now the big university campuses will be relics. Universities won’t survive. . .”
  11. 11. Each new instrument—blackboard, radio, motion picture and television, was labeled the most important advancement since Gutenberg’s printing press. But from the start of new millennium, it has been claimed that Information and Communication Technology (ICT) aids could revolutionize education because they absorb all these earlier innovations. 12
  12. 12. The advent of MOOCs may seem abrupt, but they are the next stage in the development of Open Educational Resources (OERs). From OERs evolved into Open Course Ware (OCW) and now grown into MOOCs. More and more universities are joining this “Open Learning Movement”.
  13. 13. In academia, innovations can be demonstrated through the publication of articles and books, development of new learning resources, and creation of new courses. In 2002, the UNESCO forum coined the term Open Educational Resources (OERs) for defining the educational content that may be freely accessed, shared, modified, and reused. In 2002, MIT OpenCourseWare was initiated as an OER. 14
  14. 14. In 2006, Salman Khan taught mathematics to his cousins over the Internet. From this OER movement, the first MOOC—Connectivism and Connective Knowledge emerged in 2008. At University of Manitoba, George Siemens and Stephen Downes designed and taught this MOOC. The seeds of this revolution are, thus, traced back to the early introduction of Internet in 1989. 15
  15. 15. MOOCs are the newest in the line of disruptive technologies. Disruptive innovation is an innovation, which makes an expensive and complex product simpler and cheaper, and thus draws new customers.
  16. 16. Initially, there was a lot of hype and no one was quite sure what impact MOOCs will have on the future of education. 17
  17. 17. Some MOOC platforms are: Google Course Builder OER University Class2Go
  18. 18. MOOCs can be used as prerequisites and introductory engineering courses. They can also complement continuing professional education (CPD) and certification preparation. 19
  19. 19. The flipped classroom can be a way of using MOOCs in engineering courses. Students watch video lectures at home and in classroom, time is spent on problem solving and collaborative learning. This model may provide teachers more time engaging students and less time lecturing in class. 20
  20. 20. Since the number of introductory courses in mathematics, physics, statistics, and computer programming is increasing so in future more advanced engineering courses will be offered. Some issues in engineering MOOCs are: 21 Laboratory Requirements Business Models Completion Rates Accreditation Plagiarism Pedagogy
  21. 21. 22 Launched in May 1974, AIOU is the first Open University in Asia (as well as Africa) and second in the world. The AIOU is the first in the country, adopting the MOOCs system which has emerged as a popular mode of learning worldwide. VU is Pakistan’s first University based completely on up-to-date ICT aids.
  22. 22. Latif Ebrahim Jamal National Science Information Center (LEJNSIC) launched “LEJ Knowledge Hub” in 2013 and it was first in the world to have incorporated courses from various sources for instant accessibility. “ This is probably the most exciting project that I have undertaken in my lifetime, as it can change the landscape of education in Pakistan. . . ”, said Dr. Rahman while expressing his enthusiasm about the implementation of MOOCs in Pakistan. Highlighting the basic problem of higher education, he further added, “……..The lack of trained faculty was a major hurdle in educating the masses especially in developing world…… 23
  23. 23. American universities have begun to accept MOOCs for credit. Antioch University was the first US institution to offer course credit for MOOCs. Georgia State University and San Jose State University are granting academic credit for MOOCs. Georgia Tech became the first university to launch a whole MOOC-based degree.
  24. 24. In partnership with Coursera, the University of Illinois has been offering the first open online MBA degree—iMBA. Many universities have adopted MIT Micro-Masters model. This trend of integrating MOOC learning with the traditional education is now thriving and institutions have been discovering ways to develop the MOOC system.
  25. 25. Malaysia has become the first country in the world to develop a national policy on credit transfer for MOOCs. The Indian University Grants Commission (UGC) has issued guidelines for its MOOC platform, the Study Webs of Active Learning for Young Aspiring Minds (SWAYAM). The Gazette of India has guaranteed credit mobility for MOOCs as, “No university shall refuse any student for credit mobility for the courses earned through MOOCs”. 26
  26. 26. Before the advent of MOOCs, a small group of teachers and administrators used to discuss subjects like retention, pedagogy and assessment. But such topics are under discussion now and educational research is being emphasized. MOOCs have increased the awareness about the future of education. 27
  27. 27. Despite their advantages, small number of people from developing countries like Pakistan access MOOCs. Low literacy rate, lack of infrastructure, and digital divide hinder the implementation of MOOCs in Pakistan. However, using online courses, our universities/DAI can provide Pakistani youth quality education. 28
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