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Youth icons of Kerala call for tobacco-free educational institutions in the state

Educational institutions, which are the grooming grounds for creating responsible citizens, have to be kept tobacco-free, says Jayachandran

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Use of Tobacco. Wikimedia Commons
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Thiruvananthapuram, August 24, 2016: Popular youth icons of Kerala have appealed to the state government and society to work towards making educational institutions here tobacco-free.

Popular music composer, singer and musician M. Jayachandran, state-award winning actor Parvathy Thiruvothu and Chairman of Kochi-based Startup Village Sanjay Vijayakumar have come together to fight the tobacco menace among youth.

Jayachandran said youngsters start off with cigarettes and tobacco and soon get lured by drugs. He said, “Educational institutions, which are the grooming grounds for creating responsible citizens, have to be kept tobacco-free.”

M. Jayachandran. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
M. Jayachandran. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

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Vijayakumar said, “Kerala spends Rs 1,514 crore a year for cure and care of tobacco-induced cancers and other diseases. Educating youngsters about the ill-effects of tobacco use is important and campuses should be kept tobacco-free.”

Parvathy said that any form of substance abuse comes with a lot of humiliation. She said, “I wish the youth of this generation would explore life and experience the high of an addiction-free life.”

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The Indian tobacco control law COTPA — Cigarettes or Other Tobacco Products Act 2003 — prohibits smoking in educational institutions and all forms of direct and indirect advertisements, promotion and sponsorships, besides prohibiting the sale of tobacco products within 100 yards of educational institutions. (IANS)

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Conventional vs Unconventional Classroom

So where would you be learning, conventional or an unconventional classroom?

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Unlike the conventional learning in a classroom, online training makes the content available for students digitally. Flickr

Learning is the process of acquiring new skills or knowledge and for quite some time students have followed the process of enrolling in an offline centre to learn and study from the material provided but now, there is a new and an unconventional approach to upskilling yourself and that is through online learning.

While I was growing up, if I ever wanted to learn a new skill, I had to travel a minimum of 2-3 kms to the nearest learning or tuition centre to enquire and then enrol for the desired training. Though there were interactions with the teacher, but inhibitions got the better of me and with time, because of all the unresolved doubts, the learning started to become monotonous and I lost interest. But online learning has made that journey for a student interesting, fun and a cakewalk. You can relax in your seat while the knowledge is displayed on your screen and ask all that you wish to.

To begin with, what is online learning?

Unlike the conventional learning in a classroom, online learning makes the content available for students digitally. Students can learn online, anywhere and anytime. Instead of physical copies of books, e-learning uses visual content and gamification.

To help you understand the differences better I would like to compare both the classrooms and the learning associated on the basis of parameters that are essential for an overall learning.

1.       Affordability: 

In offline centres or conventional classrooms there are a lot of miscellaneous expenses incurred and hence the fee structure is designed accordingly.

Whereas in online learning, students’ aim is to learn so companies spend resources only on developing the content and thereby lowering the cost of the training.

From text to graphics, this software does it all. Pixabay
In offline centres or conventional classrooms there are a lot of miscellaneous expenses incurred and hence the fee structure is designed accordingly. Pixabay

2.       Flexibility and convenience:

In a conventional classroom, if you miss a class it gets difficult to grasp the topic and understand what is being taught. The classes have to be attended on fixed days
and timings, offering almost no flexibility. Whereas in online learning, the classes can be taken as per your availability and thus giving you an opportunity to design your own curriculum. You could also watch the classes over and understand the topics in-depth.

3.       Answers to your questions:

While learning, doubts might arise about the topic being taught but students usually hesitate in asking questions in a classroom. Whereas in online learning, you are an anonymous user and your doubts, as frivolous they may be, can be asked without any hesitation.
4.       Practical experience:
The learning journey in a conventional classroom is about reading and grasping, it involves little or none practical applications of the learnings. Whereas in online learning, the training is designed in such a manner that the content is informative and involves practical applications as well. The test and assignments in the module are made to ensure that the student has a holistic growth.

Also Read- Apple Watch Helps Users in US Take ECG

Only 20 percent of the five million students who graduate every year get employed, industry lobby Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) said in a report, published last year.

The competition is stiff and is going to get worse with time so It essential to make yourself stand out from the rest to increase your chances of getting hired. The certificate you will receive at the successful completion of the training will help in making the employer realise that you have relevant skills and in-depth knowledge about the subject.

So where would you be learning, conventional or an unconventional classroom?

About the Author: Sarvesh Agrawal is the Founder and CEO of Internshala, an internship and trainings platform. (Internshala.com)