What is the Role of Computer in Education?

In 1965, Lorence Settlor and Daniel Davis developed most complicated teaching processes in which computer was used for presenting instructions in place of teacher. They divided the teaching process of the computer in two parts:

1. Pre-tutorial phase.

2. Tutorial phase.

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In the first phase, computer assisted instruction is given to the pupils to achieve the specific objectives on the basis of his entering behaviour. In the second phase, instructing material is presented accordingly.

The pupil studies it. Then, the achievement of the pupil is evaluated. After presenting the instruction, computer also controls it. It also provides reinforcement to the pupils.

In the modern age, the use of computers in the field of educa­tion, made in following areas:

(i) All the researchers do all analytical tasks with the help of computers in the research work.


(ii) Computers are also used in educational guidance and counseling.

(iii) Computers’ help is sought for preparing the results of the examinations.

(iv) Remedial teaching of the pupils is also done by the computers.

Computer Programmes


While observing groups of students working with the computer, you would notice that students enthusiastically participate in the learning programme.

The computer’s novelty, the challenge involved in the programme, the wonderful display of tasks-all help in creating and sustaining their motivation.

Learning with the computer is never full and monotonous. Some illustrations given below would reveal a few more qualities.

1. Code breaker:

It is a programme which keeps asking questions and the students supply the answers. In pedagogic terms this question-answer sequence provides an opportunity for useful interaction which is essential for successful learning.

2. VeriTest:

It is part of the text with blanks for the students to fill in. For each blank four alternative appear one after another and the student has to choose the most appropriate one.

Whenever necessary, the student can get the computer to display the correct words. This instant feed-back is apart of the programmed and no other technological instrument can be faster than the computer in providing such instant feedback.

2. Yellow River Kingdom.

It is problem-solving activity. The computer displays a vast kingdom with a lot of resources. The Computer is capable of simulating such complicated situations for the purpose of teaching learning. It can be simulated dangerous situations such as burning forest or division of atom.

Pedagogic Qualities of the Computer

1. Motives the learners.

2. Interacts with the learners.

3. Stimulates situations which are difficult and dangerous.

4. Provides instant feedback.

5. Distance Education.

Such a powerful instrument has several uses in the field of distance education where technological media are a basic necessity.

There is hardly any distance education institution in the world which does not make use of media such as radio and T.V. Regular, though in a small scale, radio broadcasts and TV telecasts are a part of distance education courses in India too.

Some of the major advantages of using computers in distance education are as follows:

(i) Computer brings flexibility and individuality to the study process.

(ii) Computer reduces the isolating of distance learners.

(iii) Computer stimulated students to experiment, design and create solutions to the problems.

(iv) Computer-based study materials are cost-effective when produced on a large scale.

The increasing availability of micro-computers in the developed countries offered major new opportunities for distance education. The computer has various applications for distance learning. It can be used as a teaching medium, a learning tool, and a manager of learning or as an aid to educational administration.

Administrative Applications of Computers

1. Budgeting and monitoring of finances.

2. Keeping students records.

3. Maintaining statistics.

4. Mailing of rest score.

5. Monitoring materials production registers and so on.

6. Student billing.

7. Preparation of payroll, bills and debts ledger.

Instructional Situations of Computer Application

1. Pretesting of student’s knowledge on enrolment.

2. Planning and printing individualized programmes.

3. Compiling tests and scores ere. A number of such data files can be stored in the computer.

4. Monitoring student’s progress.

Other contributions of computers are word processing to aid course development and data processing to aid administration. In addition, electronic mail is also used to communicate, change and exchange materials.

The course teams can also use computers for conferences, establishing a communication channel among multiple writers and other professionals.

‘On-Line’ and ‘Off-Line’ Computers

Computers can be used in distance learning in two modes- local mode and transmitted mode-local mode or ‘off-line’ computer stands on its own as an independent system helping the learner to work on his own.

In transmitted mode, one computer is connected to another computer which is ‘on-line’ and then the operation depends upon communication between these devices.

By inter-connecting the computers, a complex learning Network can be created which could link all distance learners with their teacher and with a central institution.

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