AIP Fosters E-learning among SVPUA&T Students through OLAT Training
October 30-Novermber 2, 2012 | Meerut, Uttar Pradesh

Today the teaching-learning process isn’t only about delivering lectures and transferring know-how from the speaker to the listener; it could involve meeting a learning goal together. The Agricultural Innovation Partnership (AIP), which aims to equip the Indian agricultural community with cutting-edge tools to ensure effective learning, plans to employ modern teaching-learning methodologies in Indian agricultural universities. Towards this end, AIP has adopted the Online Learning And Training (OLAT). OLAT is a course-based LMS (Learning Management System) with several elements which can be used to benefit the learner using effective tools built within the system. OLAT helps incorporate learning content into a course, organize the learning environment, collaborate through interaction, or assess user achievements. As an effective learning tool it benefits students by ensuring better availability and accessibility of course materials and flexible study (at a time and pace suited to the student), while guaranteeing several other advantages.

In order to ensure the effective use of OLAT by both faculty and students in the AIP partner institutions, AIP conducted a training program for Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel University of Agriculture and Technology (SVPUA&T) faculty during July this year and as part of the same initiative, it conducted hands-on training sessions for the SVPUA&T students from October 30 to November 2, 2012 in the SVPUA&T campus. About 25 undergraduate students attended the sessions. Mr Deepak Sisodia and Mr U. P. Shahi, faculty, SVPUA&T along with Mr. Ravinder M. from Sathguru Management Consultants coordinated the program.

During the four-day program, students were taught how they could access OLAT; search for a course and enroll in it; access course elements online; view and modify Pages; take live tests and evaluate results; create assignments; interact with group members; workaround with group members; provide feedback on the tests conducted; access folders, create blogs, collaborate/interact using content tools, enable discussion Forums, work together via Wiki or calendar, communicate via e-mail or the Chat, and share one’s work with an e-Portfolio.

The students were excited at the new opportunities thrown in their path by the training program. They said that the training has helped them understand how OLAT will empower them to study at a time and location that suits them best and be more responsible for their own learning. OLAT will help them engage with their learning sessions more since it will motivate self-paced learning, which is a natural consequence of the engaging nature of interactive websites. At the same time, they will also get instant feedback which will help them reflect on their errors better. OLAT will also help them broaden and enrich their learning experiences through effective collaborations across the globe.

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