ICT in Education - India & South Asia

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WikiProject: A Survey of ICT in Education for India and South Asia

Minduka Notebook.svg Project Overview

In an increasingly networked and knowledge-based world, education has emerged as a universal need and success factor in developed and developing economies alike. The importance of education has been formalised by the UN in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the individual country specific goals adopted across the globe (e.g. the Indian Development Goals which flow from the MDGs). In the developing economies of South Asia it is been seen as a means to social mobility and financial self sufficiency. Governments across these countries recognizing the significance of education have devoted considerable resources in terms of money and comprehensive programs for improving the access, quality and delivery mechanisms of education.

Thus there has been a groundswell of interest in how Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) can be deployed in the education sector. One of the most vital contributions of ICT in the field of education is easy access to learning resources. It is widely believed that ICTs can be important potential levers to introduce and sustain educational reform efforts, as well as useful aids to both teaching and learning.

Across the globe, ICT has been used in educational initiatives to:

  • Increase access to education (e.g. through virtual classrooms)
  • Improve the quality of teaching and learning (e.g. by providing online content or even training teachers)
  • Improve knowledge sharing and to encourage innovation (e.g. through National Research and Education Networks)
  • Increase the efficiency and effectiveness in planning and administration in education ministries, schools, classrooms and community learning centres

However, the effective integration of ICTs into the educational system is a complex, multifaceted process that involves not just technology but also curriculum and pedagogy, institutional readiness, teacher competencies, and long-term financing, among others. Despite evidence of increasingly widespread use of ICTs in education initiatives around the world, there is little guidance available for policy-makers and donor staff specifically targeted at developing countries contemplating the increased use of ICTs in education. In particular, there is a requirement for clearer guidance on how to help countries in using ICTs to meet internationally agreed goals like the “Millennium Development Goals”.

With the objective of bridging this gap in the shortage of policy guidance on the use of ICTs for education, World Bank, infoDev (http://www.infodev.org) is commissioning a series of regional surveys of ICT and Education. PricewaterhouseCoopers has been engaged for undertaking a Survey on the use of ICT in Education for the South Asian region. This project seeks to gather together in a single resource the most relevant and useful information on ICT in education activities in South Asia. This will serve both as a repository documenting all innovative initiatives, as well as a basis for designing strategies for effective integration of ICT in Education so that the best possible benefits are realized.

Feel free to contribute to any articles relating to WikiProject: A Survey of ICT in Education for India and South Asia and add your name to our list of participants.

Nuvola apps kview.png Scope

The scope of the project is to undertake a survey resulting in a comprehensive report as well as a series of country studies for each of the eight countries in the South Asia region. In the special case of India, it is proposed that, in addition to the overall study, a series of detailed case studies of individual states will be developed (say, at least five) to give a representative flavour of local developments. A similar approach may be followed in Pakistan. In addition, the report and case studies will be complemented by a series of thematic essays on topics of particular relevance to the region, such as gender, higher education, national research and education networks (NRENs) etc.

Data will be collected related to a variety of themes and could, for example, be divided into the following general categories, but not limited to:

  1. General state of ICT use in education
  2. National and regional policies & strategies
  3. How Ministries of Education (MOE) treat ICT issues from an internal organizational and staffing perspective (including organograms of ICT responsibilities at the MOE), as well as their inter-relations with other governmental entities (e.g., Ministry of Employment, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry with responsibility for the ICT sector, etc.), as relevant/appropriate;
  4. Current levels of ICT access and use in the sector and the level of connectedness of schools, colleges, universities etc.
  5. Notable initiatives and programs, including best practice case studies;
  6. Important thematic topics, such as the development of NRENs or the treatment of gender in education;
  7. Constraints on the use of ICT in education, including on achieving a gender balance;
  8. Donor activities;
  9. Use of ICTs in non-formal education and for skills development;
  10. Other notable and relevant information (e.g. gender, literacy);
  11. A resource base of additional information resources;
  12. A contacts database of experts and practitioners within the region that can assist in ongoing work.

Nuvola apps kchart.svg Approach & Deliverables

PwC’s proposed approach to the engagement has been derived out of its appreciation of the project, the objectives of this survey, good practices from our previous experiences across the globe and expertise on similar engagements.

The proposed project will proceed through three distinct phases, namely:

Phase I Design: The overall project design, work plan, survey plan, stakeholder communication plan will be finalized in this phase.

Phase II Execute: Work on the actual survey and secondary research will be done in this phase.

Phase III Report: The Survey Report and the Country Reports will be submitted after several rounds of review and feedback is incorporated.

Activities through the three phases of Design, Execution & Reporting will yield several key work products which will finally lead to the two major reports, namely the Report on Survey of ICT in Education, South Asia and the Country Reports. The key work products are graphically presented below:

ICT in Education key works.PNG

A detailed Task list containing the activities, deliverables and the proposed methodology for undertaking each activity, under different phases can be found in the Link below:
ICT4SouthAsiaEd: Task Console

Specialties.png Stakeholder Workshops / Discussion Groups

At various stages of the engagement, the team will discuss the deliverables as well as the work-in-progress with different key stakeholders to assimilate their feedback and also consult them to ensure that the work is in alignment with the engagement objectives.

Stakeholder Workshop - August, 2009 (Click here)

The First stakeholder workshop, was held on 10th August, 2009 at Delhi (India). This workshop was a prelude to initiating work on the survey commissioned by InfoDev and undertaken by PwC.

It involved participation from a range of stakeholders relevant to the study, such as:

  1. Government Departments
  2. Non Governmental Organizations including Academic Bodies & International Donors, and
  3. Private Companies in the field of content development

Paris Workshop - September, 2009 (Click here)

The Second Workshop, was held on 11th September, 2009 at Paris (France).

Chat-icon.png Discussion Threads

The following links to various discussion topics are created to encourage everyone to post their comments and experiences with respect to India and other South Asian countries. Your invaluable contribution to the Survey shall be highly appreciated.

For any further query kindly mail me at: email_swati@yahoo.co.in

Policy Framework for ICT in Education

Government Initiatives in Promoting ICT in Education

Quality Improvement through ICT in Education

Capacity Building for ICT in Education

Financing ICT in Education

Gender Equity and ICT for Education

Innovative use of ICT4Ed & Technological Innovation for developing Low Cost ICT products

Asia globe.gif Country Policies with Regional Initiatives

Postscript-viewer.svg Working Bibliography

This bibliography is the initial phase of this project, while its primary objective is to inform the process of developing reports that will focus on ICT developments in each India and South Asia, it is also being shared openly in the hope that it will be useful to others, and, more importantly, that others will add items and offer suggestions for improvement. The items in this collection have been selected on the basis that they provide data about ICT in education policy development and implementation processes; current projects; constraints in implementing ICT-enabled education; infrastructure development, teacher professional development and training, and digital education content development. The bibliography is therefore a potpourri of studies, evaluation reports, policy frameworks, news items and reports from numerous surveys that have been written since 2000.

We will be adding to the work as the country reports and theme papers proceed. The working Bibliography for each section shall be found under the respective sections.

*Note: all URLs were checked between August - October 2009. We hope you will join in the process.

  1. Victoria L. Tinio, “ICT in Education”, http://www.apdip.net/publications/iespprimers/ICTinEducation.pdf
  2. 2009, “Information Society Statistical Profiles 2009: Asia and the Pacific”, International Telecommunication Union (ITU-D)
  3. APDIP e-Note 17, 2007 “ICT Skill Development in the Asia-Pacific Region, Part two: Bridging the gap between demand and supply”, UNDP
  4. Caroline Haddad, Derek Elias, Shuichi Nakayama and Lucy Hargreaves, 2005, “A Situational Analysis of Education for Sustainable Development in the Asia-Pacific Region”
  5. Canada, Montreal. 2008. “Proposal for Internationally Comparable Core Indicators on ICTs in Education” UNESCO http://new.unctad.org. Prepared for the 2008 Global Event on Measuring the Information Society, Geneva, the paper analyses the selection process and principles behind the selection of the ICT indicators proposed by UIS http://new.unctad.org/upload/Global%20Event%202008/UIS%20paper%20on%20ICTs%20in%20ed%20core%20indicators%20edited%20version%20final.pdf.
  6. A.Gutterman, S.Rahman, J.Supelano, L.Thies, M.Yang, 2009. “White Paper: Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Education for Development” GAID. http://unpan1.un.org/. The paper outlines the importance, challenges and recommendations for using ICT in education for select developing countries. http://unpan1.un.org/intradoc/groups/public/documents/gaid/unpan034975.pdf.
  7. India, New Delhi. 2009 “Facing Global and Local Challenges: The New Dynamics for Higher Education” UNESCO http://portal.unesco.org/geography/en/files/10906/12353684495Maldives/Maldives. Prepared for the UNESCO South, South-West, and Central Asia Sub Regional Preparatory Conference for 2009 World Conference on Higher Education.
  8. “Measuring the Information Society.” 2009. International Telecommunication Union. http://www.itu.int/ITU-D/ict/publications/idi/2009/material/IDI2009_w5.pdf. The paper introduces an ICT Development Index which captures the level of advancement of ICT in more than a 150 countries
  9. “Education For All: Global Monitoring Report” 2007, UNESCO. www.unesco.org/education/GMR/2007/Full_report.pdf. The study includes an assessment of progress towards the 6 Education For All Goals the world is committed to achieve by 2015.
  10. “Global Education Digest 2008: Comparing Education Statistics Across the World” UNESCO. www.uis.unesco.org/template/pdf/ged/2008/GED%202008_EN.pdf. The report is a cross national comparable data to help benchmark the progress towards the Millennium Development Goals
  11. Khuong Vu, 2006. “ICT Penetration and Economic Growth in Developing Asia: Issue an Policy Implications.” National University of Singapore. http://scid-new.stanford.edu/publicationsprofile/1035. The paper provides a global view on the diffusion of ICT and its contribution to economic growth in Asia.
  12. E. C. Lallana “An Overview of ICT Policies and e-Strategies of Select Asian Economies” Asia-Pacific Development Information Programme (APDIP) www.apdip.net/publications/ict4d/ict4dlallana.pdf.
  13. “Promoting ICT for Human Development in Asia, Realising the Millennium Development Goals.” 2004. United Nations Development Program. The paper is a research of nine Asian countries -- China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Viet Nam, exploring the potential of ICT applications towards achieving human development goals.

Nuvola apps kuser.svg Participants

Feel free to add your details in the format shown below.

Participant Nationality Organisation
1. Ms. Mitakshara Kumari India PricewaterhouseCoopers Pvt. Ltd.
2. Ms. Swati Biswas India PricewaterhouseCoopers Pvt. Ltd.
3. Mr. Saurabh Agarwal India PricewaterhouseCoopers Pvt. Ltd.