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Professional & Technical Skills

 
 
 

Professional and Technical Skills

 
 






Partnership between Edinburgh’s Telford College
and Delhi University (Distance and Open Learning), Delhi

New Knowledge
Delivery System:
The Virtual Learning
Environment

In 2008, the global entertainment and media industry was pegged to witness a global Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 6.6 per cent, anticipated to reach USD 2.2 trillion in 2012. This upward thrust was primarily attributed to the emerging markets and increasing penetration of digital technology. The growing need for skilled manpower in the sector offered a tremendous educational potential. At the same time, the fact that more than half of the 300,000 students admitted to Delhi University were on the distance and open learning mode pointed to the fact that the aspirations for higher education in today’s world can be met with equal, if not greater, effi ciency outside the conventional structures of a university. A unique opportunity was visibly present in designing a new method of imparting the necessary knowledge in the easiest way, to the largest number possible.

"Some of my key learning from this collaborative project has been through exchange of ideas, experiences and peer-topeer learning which has opened new avenues for me."

Student, Delhi University
Funded by UKIERI, experts from Edinburgh’s Telford College and Delhi University (Distance and Open Learning) came together to successfully create an effective and highly effi cient new knowledge delivery system – Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) – that increases educational opportunities in media and animation across the world. The development focus was especially towards providing virtual experiences that are difficult or impossible to reproduce in the classroom. The collaboration therefore was supporting and facilitating practices that exploit technology to enhance learning, challenge traditional classroom practices and engage students in motivating, authentic, culturally-relevant and challenging experiences.

In India, where geography and finance are great impediments towards seeking higher education for a majority of the population, the new VLE offers the opportunity of acquiring the necessary employment skills required in a growing market. For Telford, the enriched and effi cient VLE optimises the benefits of online learning apart from granting access to the collaboratively developed digital educational content of superior quality.

The project teams have delivered two design courses of six months each, comprising four-month training and two-month internship. A total of 57 students have been trained over the course of the project and will soon be awarded the certifi cation jointly from Campus of Open Learning, University of Delhi and Edinburgh’s Telford College. The achievement of the collaboration has been towards the development of a joint curriculum that focuses on knowledge transfer and produces a bank of online materials within an agreed framework in areas of high priority, namely media and animation.

In order to ensure that the course content, while being innovative in nature, remained industry-relevant, best practices and value recommendations were invited from agencies such as the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Creative Loop and Adobe User Group.

One of the major achievements of this collaborative project has been in the development of high-value skills training in an emerging sector and its contribution towards reducing the gap between the demand and the supply of trained manpower in the media and animation industry. It has also raised the expectations in recruitment of quality teachers, developing new approaches of delivery, designing new simulating courses and innovative pedagogy.

It can be best summed up in the words of a participating student, “The prosperity of the country depends on education and motivation of the people. It is worth investing in education and building new skills to close the knowledge gaps that may exist. Some of my key learning from this collaborative project has been through exchange of ideas, experiences and peer-to-peer learning which has opened new avenues for me.”