Global and Lokal Distance Education - GLOKALde October 2019, ISSN 2148-7278
Volume: 5 Number: 2, Article 1
ACCESS TO EDUCATION IN INDIA: BREAKING WALLS THROUGH OER
‘Digital India’ flagship program of government of India aims to transform the country into digitally empowered society & knowledge economy. As a global commitment of empowering society, Education for All (EFA) is to provide quality basic education for children, youth and adults of all socio-economic background. Information and communication technologies (ICTs) provide the path to ensure easy access of knowledge and information with anytime anywhere flexibility to fulfil educational commitments. With the emergence of the concept of Open Educational Resources (OER), these goals seem to be accomplished effectively. According to Hewlett foundation, OER include free access of all textual, audio, video or multimedia resources, tools or techniques which are in public domain or released under intellectual property license. There are many best practices of using OER platforms for accessibility with equity, but India is in initial stage of disseminating knowledge through OER.
Thus, this paper discusses about the potential of OER in widening access and equity in education to ensure quality education for all. It explores various ways to open the door of basic education to different socially disadvantaged groups including specially-abled children, socio-economic weaker section, and specially the learners who are excluded from formal education due to many defined or undefined reasons. The paper focuses on the policies, consequent current status and global and national best practices of OERs platforms with their future possibilities. Overall, this paper provides an outlook of collections of various OER platforms specially in India such as ePathshala, Digital library of India, NROER, NPTEL etc. to ensure easy access of quality knowledge for personalized teaching and learning.