A Descriptive Study: Integration of Technology Bring Flexibility to Distance Education in Pakistan

Abdul Moeed Abid, Abdul Jabbar, Kashif Saeed, Naveed Akhtar, Javed Iqbal


Due to the ability to learn, think and decide, Human is declared as “Better” in whole living creation in the universe. Education is encouraged in all the religions including Islam. As the First word in the Quran is “Iqra” means Read. From the books of Hadith and the example of Battle of Badar, the importance of education can be found.

In the world, normally two types of education sectors are exists, one is regular education with physically existence of classes and second is distance education. In this research, focus of the research team is on Distance Education and Technological Integration in Distance Education along with the flexibility that technology brings to Distance Education in Pakistan.

For this descriptive study the data used is gathered from secondary sources such as web sites of distance education universities in Pakistan, head offices and university magazines. For this research, two major distance education universities are discussed which are Allama Iqbal Open University and Virtual University of Pakistan. The Research describes that Distance Education Starts in 1974 in Pakistan and Pakistan has the honor to be the first country in Asia who introduce Open University concept and distance education and 2nd in the World. Allama Iqbal Open University started its distance education initially by hiring the tutors in the different institutions for its student nationwide. However, with IET development the teaching method converted from traditional tutor system to the tutoring broadcast on television and radio network. But the examination system remains as traditional which was paper based examination system along with the paper based assignments for evaluating the student.

In 2002, First IT Based University “Virtual University of Pakistan” came into being and developed VULMS Virtual University learning management system. Virtual University of Pakistan is the first IT Based and totally equipped with modern information and communication technology. VULMS contains virtual class room which can be accessed by the student by providing unique student ID and password. VULMS contains video lectures of the student having revise listening option which is better than television broadcast. VULMS allow the student to download their assignment through internet from anywhere and also submit them. It also has the complete section of student Fee record, result record and other services like paper rechecking, freeze and unfreeze the semesters, apply for degree and result card etc. In 2008, Virtual University introduced online examination system which replace traditional paper system in distance education and with online system of education the next step of Virtual University was to introduce the facility of making own date sheet option for the students. By realizing that majority of the students in distance education are professional so this service was given to students. While remaining in the announced exam timing students can select dates, timing and exam city on their own for examination as per their availability.

This research describe all the phases of these technological integration one by one phase wise and discuss the impact of these integration in term of brining flexibility for the students of distance education in Pakistan.

Keyword: Education, Distance Education, Technology in Education, Education in Pakistan

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