Educational Satellite (EDUSAT)
The "EDUSAT" or the Education Satellite was launched by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on
20th September 2004 from the SriHarikota Space Research Centre located in Andhra Pradesh, using a G.S.L.V. rocket. The main purpose of this is to provide education to all people, primarily children from remote areas of the country who can not go to schools or colleges. The classes are conducted by various State Education Boards, NCERT, CBSE, Universities etc. in a studio environment using powerpoint presentations as well as the common blackboard. Both interactive as well as non-interactive sessions are offered. As many as 5000 educational institutions participate in this programme and get benefited.
As classes are conducted in a studio environment, it is enough to use the services of a few highly qualified competent teachers and telecast the proceedings to the entire nation. This eliminates the need for a large number of qualified teachers often demanded in other forms of education.
These classes are beamed to predestined areas using EDUSAT similar to regional television programmes on 'Doordharshan'. Students attending the classes could ask questions to the teachers conducting classes through SMS, e-mail or other electronic mode of communication, something similar to a TV talkshow. To enable this, schools / colleges should be having an interactive receiving terminal which is currently being supplied free by ISRO to selected schools / colleges as the whole programme is at an experimental stage. In future when this programme is expanded, schools and colleges will have to purchase this at a subsidized cost of Rs. 3000.
In addition, these classes could be recorded on a CD and converted into computer file and made available on the internet without the interactive session. They will be available from the archives at any later date in future. In a nutshell it could be said that Indian Government is making all out preparations to provide education to all, at a fraction of the present cost using space technology.
1. Distance education will get strengthened.
2. Education could be made available at a fraction of its cost to a large number of students.
3. A large number of students can be educated by a very few extremely efficient teachers who can reach them from the studios located in the universities or education boards i.e. it eliminates the demand for a large number of teachers.
4. Education reaches the door steps of students; there is no need for students to go in search of good education.
5. Students can receive education at their own pace and convenience especially in the case of those who are employed.
In short we can say instruction through EDUSAT will give a thrust to Home-schooling.