Guidelines for Self study

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In the technological era, imparting and gaining education has also been extensively influenced by technology and with increasing number of technological tools self-studying is on the rise and education is no longer confined to just the classroom. Before also, at the time of examination season, no matter how good teachers and friends are in terms of helping with the preparations, the maximum one will learn and grasp was via self study.  Therefore, from time immortal, self study has always been an integral part of acquiring education but presently, it has gained a greater importance in the times of COVID-19 pandemic when almost all educational institutes are closed and are going for ONLINE teaching and learning process.

In ONLINE teaching and learning process, institution, faculty and students all have their specified roles towards effective dissemination of knowledge to students but self study by students has also an important role to play in the process of learning.  Here, the duties of the institution and faculty members and role of students to play to make ONLINE teaching-learning process more effective are summed up.

Role of Institute

  • Institution’s role is to facilitate, encourage and motivate its faculty to put their best efforts in making the delivery of subject contents in a more student friendly and effective learning environment.
  • Institutes can devise mechanisms to get regular feedback from students about the teaching process as well as can ask the faculty members to submit their lecture schemes along with lecture notes in order to make sure that the teaching resources being given to students are as per the needs and requirements of the students.
  • Institutes should make facilities for online teaching and interactive doubts/problem solving session between students and teacher. Online examination mode with multi choice questions (MCQs) should be preferred and more practice sessions should be arranged before the final examination.

Role of faculty members

Obtaining broad, active, representative and serious participation from students towards online teaching-learning process is often difficult which is further marked by difficulties & disinterest due house hold problems, internet connectivity and students being busy in other activities. This problem is more serious with students at lower level classes as compared to students at higher classes.  Every effort should be made to enlist, motivate and encourage every student’s active participation in ONLINE teaching-learning process. All faculties have a major role to play in the self study process. The faculty perspective on the integrity, quality, and effectiveness of the institution is an integral part of an effective self-study process. Teacher’s role is the supreme in making the online teaching-learning process for students very attractive and effective. Teachers should try to incorporate the following while preparing their course materials for online classes:

  1. The lecture notes can be in the form of videos or pdf/doc files of hand-written/typed or Xeroxed materials.
  2. Lecture notes, however, should be very clear and must adhere to the contents of the course.
  3. Teachers must point about the pre-requites and additional contents for the better understanding of the students.
  4. They should give due importance to problem solving sessions, conducting practice quizzes and possibly short answer type questions also.
  5. Teachers should give detailed assignments (to be answered and checked) to students on the contents of the course at regular intervals i.e., after every chapter.
  6. All the reading resources (books, notes, reports, internet websites etc.) used by teacher himself to prepare the lecture notes which a student can also consult himself should be informed to the students.
  7.  Teachers should always welcome the feedback and questions from students and must try to give them solutions.

Importance of self study

Self-studying has always an integral part of learning but at present with the availability of advanced educational tools as well as rising demand due to COVID-19 pandemic, self learning is becoming a learning method where students direct their own studying-outside the classroom and without direct supervision. Students are able to take control of what (and how) they are learning and self-study can be a very valuable way for many students to learn. The ultimate method of self learning is so much more than just a way of learning. It releases your exclusive ability to tackle virtually any challenge, skill or subject, without regard to your current level of experience, and accomplish your goals even when a formal instruction is unavailable. With so much information available online, it has become easier than ever for students to learn by themselves. Thus, self-study is becoming more popular a way to engage students with what they might be learning in classes and not only all educational institutes are in race but private players are also equally enthusiastic to jump into the field of ONLINE teaching and learning process.  Through self-learning online, students have the ability to access so many resources that now, learning can happen anywhere, anytime. Self-studying is a great method which can be used by anyone to enhance learning experience, whether they are studying for a course or learning about a topic for fun. Using self-study, students are able to go beyond simply learning what their class textbooks and instructors teach them and they are encouraged to further explore topics in which they are interested to develope stronger study skills as a result. One of the major advantages of self-study is that students can take control over their own learning which will make them more interested in learning. There are various advantages of self-learning, some of them being:

  • Self study helps the students to widen their thinking level.
  • It gives freedom of learning without any restrictions.
  • Self-learning would enable the learner to explore the interests of learning.
  • Self-learning is more fun than regular teaching.
  • Self study will build a sense of responsibility in students and they will start accepting responsibility.
  • Self-learning means that you can read different interesting new books, rather than boring notes by teachers or textbooks.
  • Students can make study material on their own.
  • There is no fear of criticism during self study.
  • Students may learn at their own desired time and according to their schedule.
  • Self-learning makes the students to understand and memorize things more naturally as they work themselves, as compared to the regular teaching where teacher’s spoon feed the information into them.
  •  Self-learning gives an opportunity to the passionate students to go in details of a subject and can interact with the subject matter as deeply they would like to go.
  • Self study gives a great opportunity to develop self-confidence and a good work ethic.
  • Students develop the potential to perform better tests because they are already used to tackling problems on their own, which increases their confidence.

Role of a student

When the teacher has uploaded the reading material related to the course for the use of students then it becomes the domain of the student to make an effective self study plan to read, learn, solve and be able to answer the questions on the contents. Making a self study plan is very important document in order to be able to execute the online teaching-learning process for better outcome. Self study plan can have the following components:

  1. Set your objectives as per the topics to be studied.
  2.   Look out for good and reliable information sources. Make sure that contents of lecture notes are containing all the information related to the mentioned topics.
  3. Develop interest and keep learning. Make a plan with effective implementation and cover the topic well.
  4. Read (online) or better you download the contents on the paper and then read (offline). 
  5. While reading online, make sure that the size of the text is enlarged enough so that it is easily readable and does not strain your eyes.
  6. Always take regular breaks during self learning.
  7. You can take help of other reading resources like books or the internet also to read about the topics.
  8. Read line by line for basic concepts and keep on making notes on each topic.
  9. Be prepared to deal with problems. Try to solve all the mathematical derivations and formulae on pen and paper mode and make your notes.
  10. Look out for learning communities. You should share and discuss openly about your learning process with your friends for a better outcome.
  11. Make efforts to solve related numerical and short/long answer types questions on the topics.
  12. Outcome assessment. You can attempt MCQs (MOCK TESTS) on the related topics of course using internet resources.
  13. Where there is a problem in understanding or derivation, you can send me a mail and I will try to resolve the problem.

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