Professional Development through ODL during the Pandemic: A Comparative Study of India and Guyana

Thumbnail Image
Priyadarshini, Anita
Panda, Santosh
Corporate Author
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Commonwealth of Learning (COL)
Report/Paper Number
PCF10 Sub-theme: Building Resilience // The Covid-19 pandemic affected educational systems all over the world, leading to shift from face-to-face teaching-learning to a system of emergency remote learning. There are many studies that have examined the impact of these developments on conventional education as well as open and distance learning (ODL) systems. The present study is a transnational study of learners engaged in professional development in ODL institutions of India and Guyana. The study investigates comparative learner experiences with respect to four dimensions namely, quality of technology, engagement with teachers, student-student dialogue, and education-work-life balance while studying through virtual mode including in a cross-border learning scenario. // The study is a descriptive survey using a mixed mode methodology. The sample comprised 60 learners from India and Guyana enrolled in the Post Graduate Diploma in Distance Education (PGDDE) programme offered by the Indira Gandhi National Open University, India. The findings revealed that there were commonalities among learners in India and Guyana. Learners found live counseling sessions more engaging and interactive. It was seen that social media played a positive role in connecting learners during the pandemic and helping them to form their own learning communities. Learners in both countries felt that the education-work-life balance was disturbed during the pandemic. However there was determination among all learners to complete their online professional development programmes. This study will contribute to leveraging learners’ experiences for formulating future policy and designing practices for continuing professional development in developing countries for achieving SDG 4 for quality education. // Paper ID 8828
Online Learning, Open and Distance Learning (ODL), Professional Development