The Indian Express
February 24, 2013
Soon, all Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) schools in the city will have online laboratories (OLabs). CBSE chairman Vineet Joshi, in a circular, said OLabs have been recommended for all schools affiliated to the board.
Online Labs is developed by CDAC, which creates a virtual learning environment. The circular states that OLabs work on web environment and helps in practical experiments. It has been developed for Class IX and X students to enhance their understanding of experiments. The content has been mapped and aligned with the CBSE curriculum. The experiments are demonstrated using interactive simulations based on mathematical models, videos and interactive animations to create real world environments.
"OLabs will be a great help for students especially in rural areas where lab facilities are not up to the mark. Many schools do not have instruments and infrastructure for performing experiments. Hence, these online facilities will help them a lot," said Nirmala Tambe, president, Sahodaya, a cluster of CBSE schools in and around Pune.
It is also capable of assessing a student's observational, procedural and reporting skills, and will allow teachers to track student usage, thus making learning more effective. These virtual experiments will stimulate students interest and learning and will give them the experience of doing real lab work, by graphically resembling with Laboratory equipment and simulating a virtual medium, says the circular. "Students can even download it and practise at home as many times as they wish. The teachers can take laptops to classes and teach the practicals along with theory so that students understand it better," Tambe said. "Although none of the CBSE schools in Pune has yet taken this up, I think all of them will have it soon," she added.
Although OLabs are available free of cost at www.olabs.co.in to all CBSE schools, Tambe said it will be better if they are available in the CD format. "There is a possibility that the school does not have high-speed internet or students do not have internet connection at home. So if OLab data is available in CD format, it will help all," she said.