Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Youtube as an educational and entertainment channel ..

Some exciting Youtube statistics I collected (as of July 2017) :

1. Almost 5 billion videos are watched on Youtube daily.  
2. 1.3 billion population on planet earth (of the 7.44 billion-2016) use Youtube 
3. On an average there are 1 billion mobile Youtube views every day ..

No doubt Youtube and videos are getting to be the most widely used entertainment and information tools of the future. Even all the Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) use videos for teaching their students. Most of the Universities use a mix of videos and quizzes to help students learn. I use videos heavily in my E-learning courses at elearning.alliance.edu.in

While it is easy to convey ideas at the school level, one of the greatest doubts higher education Professors have is, can videos based teaching help in higher education. The author believes that if used creatively, with a blend of white board and videos, even higher education can benefit a lot. 

It is said that a picture speaks a thousand words, similarly a video speaks a thousand pictures. Visual systems is an interesting lean manufacturing philosophy (Japanese) where by whatever actions, commands, situations, environments , choices, decisions, information etc are displayed by means of pictures. 

Videos take this information a step further and gives a three dimension view of the situation and the ecosystem around it. It is very comforting for the viewer to observe and imbibe what is good and what is bad from it.  Videos should always be used as an extension to the classroom lectures and not a s a substitute for it. If used carefully, it can be the best teaching mode to be used in a classroom. Used in the blended mode with a bit of oral teaching combined with occasional videos, also called blended teaching, learning can be made really interesting and fun. 


Worldover, Youtube videos are used more for entertainment than as a learning resource. But as a teaching professional, even the entertainment videos I watch on Facebook or Whatsapp social media, I find there is always a learning component to it. It is for us to discern the good from the bad and absorb the positive aspect. 

The research is to find whether there is a still better medium or mix of media that can help in effective learning .. The immersion experience of taking students to different places around the world for a better understanding of the situation, the environment and the eco system surrounding any event is a better way to understand a situation. 

Can every student of the world be able to do it around the world ?  It is definitely possible in one's near surroundings and nearby places. That is the reason why educational tours and industry visits need to be made mandatory along with industry internship in a student's educational life, whatever stream the student is pursuing, be it engineering, medical, law, arts, commerce, pure sciences etc..

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