UK Professor advocates for internet usage during exams at World Education Summit

In 6th World Education Summit (7 – 8 February), Dr. Sugata Mitra, a professor at Newcastle University said to introduce the internet as a course in learning. He also suggested to using the internet during examinations. He strictly believes in automated and continuous evaluation of open-ended questions. According to him, dealing with questions is more important rather than dealing with answers.

newcastle university professor sugata mitra
Sugata Mitra has been advocating for merger of internet with learning for a long time

“The future of pedagogy has got to allow spontaneous order as a new method in children’s education in the presence of the internet. Internet must permeate the education system,” Dr. Mitra said at the summit.

With the view of internet education, Mitra said students would allow taking care of their learning while teachers are taking a backseat. However, he is not totally in opposition of absence of teachers. He said that teacher could present remotely as in the Granny Cloud’s concept, in which elders contact with children through skype and offer guidance to them.

According to Mitra, reading, writing and arithmetic has become of less use in this advanced world of technology. He said, “Comprehension, communications and computation are the new basics. It is irrelevant to provide direct factual information manually. And the role of memory in education does not need emphasis-devices are playing that role. Brain retains what it wants to retain.”

Mitra believes that today’s learning method is antiquated and it should be taken over by the internet. He suggested removing existing irrelevant skills and knowledge which are of no use in this modern world. “The internet must be a subject to taught. Networks, Chaos theory and Emergent Phenomena should also be taught,” he said.

Dr. Mitra is presently a professor at Newcastle University, UK. He is best known for his ‘Hole in the wall’ experiment, in which children operate in unsupervised environments. This experiment was employed in around 300 learning stations covering 300,000 children in India and several African countries. In year 2013, he also won the TED Prize.

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