IT for Change helped the Telangana Department of School Education to develop the ICT syllabus and textbook for high school and higher primary school students, and the corresponding teacher handbook, with support from CIET (NCERT) and CEMCA. This is the first such effort based on the National ICT Curriculum, 2013. The textbook emphasises collaboration and creation for learning, in a free and open technology environment.
The Telangana Department of School Education (DSE) is keen to integrate technology into teaching and learning in sustained and meaningful ways. It believes that this requires development of good quality digital resources as Open Educational Resources (OER), teacher training on digital methods and processes to create and use OER as well as the development of a school curriculum, including a student ICT text book and teacher ICT hand book that focuses on building digital skills and competencies in students.
IT for Change has been working with the department to design and develop the ICT syllabus and design and conduct teacher development programs. The ICT syllabus is aligned with the NCERT National ICT curriculum, 2013, which has interpreted ICT in newer and powerful ways, such as moving beyond application learning, encouraging a comprehensive view of digital literacy, seamless subject integration, and emphasizing creation and collaboration in a free and open technology environment. ITfC’s work in developing the ICT student text book and teacher hand book as OER is supported by CEMCA.
Apart from the development of the text book and hand book, ITfC will also support the development of mathematics and science teachers as master resource persons, who will build 'professional learning communities', on the lines of the Subject Teacher Forum – Karnataka Open Educational Resources (STF-KOER) program.
Support has been received from International Development Research Centre (IDRC) through the Research on OER for Development (ROER4D) program, as an action research to evolve a model based on participatory approaches to OER adoption through professional learning communities of teachers. The Telangana experience will provide robustness to the evolution of this collaborative model of OER adoption. ITfC has conducted workshops for mathematics, science and social science teachers over 2015-2017 to support teachers on OER creation and to transact the ICT syllabus in the schools, in partnership with UNICEF and CEMCA.
The state is also in the process of developing an OER policy that will support ongoing / creation in the state. To support the digital classrooms, the state, ITfC has helped department in developing and launching the Telangana Repository of Open Educational Resources (TROER) platform to facilitate teachers to access, create and share OER. The platform uses the MediaWiki collaborative content development platform, which is also being used by Wikipedia, the world's most popular OER repository.
The ICT text book and hand book are hosted on the TROER platform and can be downloaded from the site, since it has been released as OER. Releasing a text book as OER has been a pioneering act on the part of the Telangana education department.