Every alternate Sunday, about 50 students meet at a college in Mumbai, for their course in Teacher Education. They meet in three groups, geographically distanced from one another, yet intellectually very close, as they are linked through a software that enables interaction with one another and their tutor. They are referred to as a distributed classroom. On-line workshops and interviews, podcast of lectures, blogs, discussion forums and whiteboards, along with face-to-face interaction at their study centres are part of their routine interaction. This sort of e-B.Ed (as the course is referred to) is perhaps a pioneering effort in teacher education in India. The course is being offered by the Yeshwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University. The participants vouch that this is a very interesting learning experience.
E-learning, on-line learning, and blended learning are terms that have penetrated the system and in a way have changed the face of traditional teaching.
The author is a teacher-educator at Pushpanjali College of Education, Maharashtra. She is closely involved as curriculum designer and resource material generator for an e-B.Ed course. She can be reached at email@example.com.