This project is to design a Web-based distance learning system, where instructors and students can participate fully in distance learning activities while geographically separated from each other. This project is aimed to design and implement a distance learning system and use internet as the delivery mode. This report discusses in detail background research on distance education and different modes of delivery technologies used. It also discusses advantages and disadvantages of distance learning. It also gives tips for successful distance learning and who should opt distance learning, as it is not suited for everyone. This project presents the design and implementation of this new and inexpensive distance learning system. It was developed using HTML, CSS and PHP. It handles three different kinds of users: student, instructor and admin.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Education is the way toward achieving a generally lasting change in human conduct. It is the primary instrument used to safeguard, keep up and overhaul people’s culture, standards and qualities. In any developing country, education is a veritable device for deciding innovative headway and passing on to the new ages, the current learning of the physical condition. Training likewise fills in as stage for presenting people to any association, giving aptitudes for performing day by day employments, recreation just as teaching sound ethics in the individuals for their own advantage and that of the general public. In synopsis, training is the stage on which more youthful age comprehend the past legacy just as take an interest and contribute seriously to the development and advancement of the general public. Conventionally, education has been practiced across the world in segregated buildings by carefully regimented and standardized classes of students and teachers. This has a consequential effect on both the teacher and the learner. For instance, education is verifiably limited distinctly to the individuals who could be in the classroom and pursue the instructor unbendingly with the pace by which he introduces his lectures, the ever increasing population explosion all over the continent and different educational system in every region of the world brought greater challenges to this method of education. For instance, there is an issue of lacking number of human and material assets to cater for the training of the enormous populace. The number of inhabitants in school age resident in many spots has developed immensely to the degree that solitary a little rate can be offered admission. The student – lecturer and student-classroom ratios have grown to the extent that teaching and learning in the classroom have been less effective. The field of education therefore provides the most fascinating application of computing system, which has consequently attracted considerable attention from educationists and policy makers since the late 1960s when computers were introduced into classrooms. Various information technologies have been applied in learning and teaching, such as Computer Aided Instruction, (CAI), Computer Aided Learning (CAL), Research Packages, Project Monitoring, and Computerized Libraries and so on. As a result of technological advancement in multimedia technology, computer networks and the Internet, computers are now being applied in distance learning premised on on-line and real time teaching and instruction.
A distance learning framework carries education nearer to the individuals and evacuates the pressure and imperatives, which characterize the conventional classroom learning system. The hallmarks of distance learning are the separation of teacher and learner in space and/or time, the control of learning by the student rather than the distant instructor, and non-adjacent communication between student and teacher, mediated by print or other forms of technology. At its most essential level, distance education is a procedure where number of teachings is conducted by remotely located lecturers. Two categories of distance learning systems exist; namely On-line and Off-line distance learning. On-line distance learning, also known as virtual classroom is a type of learning system in which students work on their own at home or at the office and communicate with personnel and different studies by means of email, electronic discussions, videoconferencing and different types of PC based correspondence.. Off-line distance learning on its own is a multi-campus system where a University or Polytechnic establishes many campuses and each of these campuses may be centrally controlled or decentralized.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The role of education for the development of a country is indispensable and countries like Nigeria, countries with very large number of population, with backward technology and few numbers of instructors, are required to contribute more on this division in order to get taught residents with quality and quantity. One methods for doing this is through expanding the quantity of colleges with sufficient human and material assets. Even this may not meet the demand as there are always learners with different constraints which are beyond the capability of universities, moreover the establishment of a university is costly and time taking tasks. So providing education in distance with the existing institutes and academicians can be taken as a best alternative. However the provision of distance education in Nigeria, which mainly uses paper and classrooms as means of delivery, is so passive that there is no interactivity among the students themselves and with tutors. This lack of interactivity is considered as one of factors that affects the quality of distance education. The application of computer assisted distance education can bring the missed interactivity using different tools. In addition to the interactivity, such technique can provide progressive follow ups of the students and avoid the distance barriers in providing the materials. Therefore, this project aims to come up with a web based distance education so as to alleviate or minimize the stated limitations of distance education.
1.3 AIM AND OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The main aim of the study is to Design and Implement a web based system for distance learning for NOUN University, with the following objectives:
- Provide course material on time and with different media types (audio, text and video).
- Provide online exams.
- Provide upcoming events
- Generate grade report.
- Provide a chat room.
SCREEN SHOTS OF THE APPLICATION
1.4 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The scope of the research is focused on designing and implementing a web based system for Distance Learning using innovative technology as a significance tool to drive quality of education using National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Nigeria.
1.5 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
During the cause of the study, I encountered they major challenges:
- Data collection
- Lack of time
- Poor Internet Network and many more.
1.6 DEFINITION OF TERMS
NOUN – National Open University of Nigeria.
e- Learning - e-learning refers to a learning system that we can obtain through the internet using an electronic device.
Education - Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs, and habits.
CAI - Computer Aided Instruction
CAL - Computer Aided Learning.
Technology - the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes, especially in industry.
University- an institution of higher (or tertiary) education and research which awards academic degrees in various academic disciplines.
Distance Learning - Distance learning is a way of learning remotely without being in regular face-to-face contact with a teacher in the classroom.