Online Learning and Education Technology: A Comprehensive Guide

Online Learning and Education Technology: A Comprehensive Guide

With the change in the education system, the traditional system of learning is being converted into online learning. Now students do not need to go to school or any of the educational institutions, as they are getting everything by sitting in their homes. Online learning has given a lot of flexibility to students as they can now study alone with doing their other work. However, you must still be very doubtful about online education. 

Quick Takeaways

  • Online learning means that you do not need to go to the classroom and can get the learning experience while sitting at home.
  • Some of the course-provide platforms are Chegg, Course Hero, Grammarly, etc. 
  • When you are in the online classroom, you will need to have video conferencing platforms like Google Meet, Webex, etc to get into the class. 
  • To prevent online cheating teachers need to install proctoring software like proctorio, respondus lockdown, etc.
  • Every teacher needs to keep records of the students. Thus for teachers, LMS platforms are created to maintain the records.
  • When the students are given the assignment there may be plagiarism in it. And thus teachers use various tools to detect plagiarism in it.

However, you must read till the end so that you do not miss any of the crucial facts regarding online learning.

What is online learning?

Online education or digital learning means studying online by sitting at the home. You will not need to go to school like the traditional way. Another name for online education is virtual learning. It means you are taking live classes online while sitting at home. There are a lot of edtech platforms like Udemy which will help you to study online while sitting at your home. Digital learning has a lot of benefits:

  • In remote learning, you can study online from any place and at any time you want to. Unlike the traditional education system, you do not need to go to an educational institution. 
  • There is a lot of flexibility with the help of online learning. You can study from any place and you can also learn various skills as well with the help of virtual learning.
  • Online learning has also helped students to earn their degrees in just 6 months. So if you were unable to complete their degree, you can always think of doing these associate degrees.
  • If you have a lot of work to do like part-time jobs or some other responsibilities, you may not be able to study regularly. Thus you can get a lot of recorded lessons to study. 
  • Some online schools also give you refunds and laptops for attending them.
  • You can also get online courses which will help you to learn skills in different fields. One such platform where you can learn the language and use it you will need to get Duolingo gems.
  • If you are bored in the online classroom, you can take a break from it which can not be done in the offline classroom.
  • If you are a teacher you will need to share your notes with your students. Thus you can use a document camera for it to share with the students.

What are different educational apps and platforms available for kids and students?

There are different educational apps and platforms available for kids and students in online learning. Many students have started copying the answers from these platforms. However, the most common apps for education are –

1. Chegg

Chegg is one of the leading online learning platforms in which you can find a lot of learning content on different subjects. This platform makes money by providing study material to the students. There are different services that you will be getting on this platform like digital rental books, question and answers, etc. Till 2021, the platform also offers a service of earning extra income by providing online tutoring service. 

To use chegg you will have to purchase the subscription plan. However, you can access it for free in some ways like creating an account and cancelling the subscription before its free trial or selling out old books on the website. Though you will get a lot of help by using this website, one question that you may need clarification on is whether chegg is worth using or not. There is no doubt that it is a worthy platform as you will be getting a lot of study material related to the subject. The number of users on this platform shows its legitimacy as well. 

Also if you are thinking of copying the content and uploading it to your exams, your teachers will easily detect plagiarism in it. This does not mean that chegg will notify your school that you have used this platform. However, if it is a very serious problem chegg will definitely provide your information to the school. 

2. Course Hero

Just like Chegg, Course her0 is a platform where you can find learning content for various subjects. You can get various notes, videos, materials, courses like data entry, etc. Again you will need to take a subscription for using this platform. However, if you want to use it for free you can always upload your documents, create some new accounts, or play various quizzes on the platform. When you are uploading the content on Course Hero, one thing that you must take care of is that document you are reporting has original content and is not copied. It is because the platform can easily detect plagiarism in it.

Now again one thing you might be thinking of is if course Hero is worthy or not. As you will be getting a lot of learning content for various subjects, it is definitely worth using this platform. You can also get access to various study materials by uploading your own documents. Also, this platform is legal to use, which means it is a safe platform to use. On this platform, you can also get the option of teaching the students. However many previous teachers report that their accounts have been closed without being notified and getting paid.

3. Coursera

Coursera is again an online learning platform where you will get a lot of study material just like the above two platforms. You can always take Coursera plus subscription to access more than 700 courses on the platform. You will get more than 90% of educational programs on Coursera with the help of Coursera plus. There are several online courses available on this platform along with various certifications. These certifications are also sharable with the employer. Thus this platform is definitely worth it to use.  

4. Photomath

As the name suggests, photomath is a platform where you can learn a lot about maths. On this platform, you can easily solve and take the help of difficult mathematical questions. Though photomath was only created to help the students, many of the students have started taking advantage of it in the online examination. 

5. Grammarly

Grammarly is an online learning platform which can help you in writing content and find out errors in it. This platform is specifically designed for making writing assignments like dissertations, college assignments, etc. You can find a free version of Grammarly which only offer you limited services like spelling errors or basic grammatical errors. If you want to use plagiarism services or correct advanced errors, you will need to take a subscription to Grammarly. 

6. Quizlet

Quizlet is a platform which is again designed to help you in remembering the meaning of different terms with the help of flashcards. On this platform, there are different activities that revolve around flashcards. One such activity on quizlet is you will have to match the definition of the word given on the flashcard. 

7. Edukite

The main aim of Edukite is to provide education free of cost. You can get a lot of various courses on this platform at 0 costs. They also provide a course completion certificate that helps you to boost your skills in CV. There are more than 3000 courses available on Edukite which are absolutely free.

8. Academia

Academia is a platform which provides different articles and research papers on various topics. There are more than 100 million students, scholars, researchers, etc on this platform. If you want to explore your knowledge, you must definitely try out Academia.

9. SparkNotes

SparkNotes is a platform which helps you to get help with your homework. It works like chegg where you can give your questions and get the answer for them. SparkNotes is easy to use and help students to save a lot of time. However many students try to use it for cheating which should not be done. You must only use it for help and not for cheating.

10. Mathway

Mathway is a platform which will help you to learn about different mathematical topics. You will get an online calculator which will help you to solve various problems of algebra, graphing, calculus, etc. Though Mathway was created for helping students, many students have started using it for cheating.

11. Masterclasses

Masterclass is a platform in which you will be getting knowledge about different courses. On this platform, you can find out the different courses that will be taught by professionals in the specific field. You will have to take a subscription for using this platform. However, if you are thinking of getting only a single subject, you can buy a single class on it. It means that you do not need to buy a full subscription for it.

There may be times when you may want to study in your free time. In such,h case you can download the videos and check them whenever you are free. You can use masterclass on your television, mobile, tab, etc. If you have taken the subscription and do not want to use it further you can cancel it.

What are the different platforms where online classes took place?

When you are in online learning it is important to have videoconferencing platforms. However, if you are a teacher you must try to deepen the voice so that the students could get all the information. Following are the different platforms that are mostly used by different tutors to take the online class-

1. Google Meet

Google Meet is a platform which is commonly used in online learning On this platform, you can add or remove participants. You can also share the screen with the other participants in the meeting. The platform also provides a service for recording the session. If you are a teacher you can only see the screen of the student if they give permission to see your screen. Also, it is the best platform to take tests as you can also prevent teaching on this platform. However, there are different hacks when a student sits for an exam. Thus you must take care of if the students are using these hacks or not. 

2. Webex

Webex is another platform via which you can go on with online learning. It is a video conferencing platform where you can share your screen with the students. Again on this platform, you can only see the screen of the student if he/she allows you. If you minimise Webex and use the other website for more than 50 seconds, the Participant Attention Tracking feature will tell your professor that you are not active on Webex

3. Zoom

Zoom is again a platform which is used for taking online classes. On this platform, the teachers meet their students in an online set-up and give them lectures based on the topics related to the subject. You can see the screen of the students on the zoom platform if your students allow you to do it. However, if you are thinking that zoom can prevent students to cheat in an online exam.

How to prevent cheating during online examinations?

When the exams were in the traditional manner, cheating in exams was done smartly. Students used a lot of cheating devices like Bluetooth pens, smart watches, etc. Online examinations have given emerge to a lot of cheating. Most students have started cheating during online examinations. In fact, with the change in time, students have gotten access to various websites from where they have started cheating in their exams and homework too. There are a lot of online platforms like lockdown browsers or procuring platforms that are used to prevent cheating during the online examination-

1. Proctorio

Proctorio is software that is developed to prevent cheating during the examination. It is a useful platform for those who are supervising the online exam. Just like traditional examinations, proctorio platform helps to prevent cheating in online examinations. This platform helps to record the video and the voice of the students. Even if your student does a little movement during the exam, Proctorio will mark a flag for it.

2. Respondus lockdown browser

Respondus browser is the one that will lock the screen of the laptop. With the help of this software, you will get to know if the student is trying to open a new tab on their screen. There are multiple ways by which respondus will detect cheating like eye movement, face detection and also if there is a network issue. Respondus will give you some access to the student screen so that you could see what the student is doing. However, if students are using a phone which is not being detected on the screen then the student can easily cheat.

3. Honorlock

Again by using honorlock you can easily detect cheating as it uses AI to check the behaviour of the students. If a student is found doing a wrong thing, honorlock detects the behaviour and tells the teacher. Also, it will provide the teachers with the IP address of the student, making it difficult for the student to cheat. 

4. ProctorU

ProctorU is again a software which will help you to prevent cheating in online exams. With the help of ProctorU you can easily detect screen sharing. You can easily detect eye movement or location. So if two students are taking exams in the same place, ProctorU can help you to detect it. 

5. Blackboard

Blackboard is software which again locks the screen on which the student gives the exam. It is again the most common platform to proctor the screen of the laptop or the computer. Along with the proctoring services, you can also create courses on various subjects on Blackboard

6. Examity

Examity is the platform which helps you to proctor the laptop or the computer. It is the software that many schools used to prevent cheating during online examinations. Again just like other platforms, Examity helps to detect any unrecognized movement or eye movement. It will lock your browser and thus you may not be able to go to a different screen.

What are Learning Management System (LMS) Platforms?

Just like the traditional education system, in online learning, all the teachers need to maintain various records like attendance, assignment grades, etc. LMS platforms or gradebooks are used by educational institutions to make it easy for teachers to maintain all the needed records. These platforms are not capable of detecting cheating online. Following are the different LMS platforms which are used by most of the tutors-

1. Moodle

Moodle is a platform on which you can maintain all the records of attendance, assignments, grades, etc. As we discussed earlier that these platforms are not able to detect teaching alone. It means that you will need to have proctor software along with LMS platforms. Thus you will need to have proctor software along with moodle. 

2. Aleks

Aleks is an LMS platform which not only helps you to keep records but also provides students with several courses. You can use various platforms to create quizzes through various platforms and upload them on Aleks as a part of regular assessments. When you log in to the platform, you will have to provide all the necessary information which help the platform to recognize you.

3. Wileyplus

Again Wileyplus is a software which is created for maintaining the data. This means that you will only be able to maintain the data of the students and not detect cheating. Wiley plus is a platform in which you will again need to install proctor software for taking the exams. 

4. Canvas

Canvas is a learning management tool which helps you to maintain the data of the students. This platform has 50 million users which show how legit and reliable this tool is. Canvas will also be needed to install proctored software for preventing online cheating. There is no doubt that canvas can not detect screen sharing or track the tab. 

5. Schoology

Schoology is a platform which again helps teachers to maintain the record of their students. Many believe that it can easily detect cheating which is not true. It also needs proctor software to detect cheating. On Schoology, teachers can perform all the class management services.

Are Online Tests valid and Reliable?

Online education means taking online examinations and tests for checking the student’s learning. But one thing that you may be doubtful about online tests is valid or not. Definitely, online tests, assignments, or exams are valid but if taken in a proper manner. It means that if you are using proper proctoring software, these tests become valid. However, still there will be students who will manage to cheat thus you must not only rely on proctoring software.

On the other hand, if we talk about assignments or tests which are not proctored, will definitely have copped content. The copied content in the assignments or the tests is also known as plagiarised content. It is really bad to have plagiarism in the assignment as it will lose your own credibility. The most common type of plagiarism on this platform is incremental plagiarism and patchwork plagiarism. You must also remember that as a teacher you can always get to know if the student has copied the content or not. There are various plagiarism detector tools that you can use to detect plagiarism. You may also know that you can take online acting classes, which may not need any cheating detector. Thus further we have discussed these plagiarism tools in detail for your reference.

Different types of plagiarism detector tools?

The following are various types of plagiarism detector tools-

1. PlagScan

PlagScan is a tool that is very widely used for checking plagiarism in assignments or tests. If you are a new user of this website, you will be getting free credits for 2000 words. After checking plagiarism for 2000 words on PlagScan, you will have to buy the subscription. Depending upon your need of you, there are two types of plans – individual and business. According to various studies, it provides 95% of accurate results. 

2. SafeAssign

One of the most commonly used platforms used by educational institutions is SafeAssign, as it is free for them. However, this does not mean that the students can not use it for submitting the assignment. In fact, most of the students use the safe-assign platform as it gives 92-97% accuracy. When you are using safe-assign you will see the safe-assign percentage which is also known as the safe-assign score.

If the score is 40% or above then definitely it is a bad score. When you are using this platform, you must know that if you have more pages, this platform can take about half an hour to give the result. 

3. Turnitin

Turnitin is a platform which is again very popular for determining plagiarism in the content. It can easily detect copied content and you can also check for plagiarism while comparing a particular document. One thing while using this platform you must also know that Turnitin will keep your paper with itself. However many students find different ways to reduce similarities on Turnitin. One such way is by using paraphrasing tools like Quillbot as Turnitin does not detect it. 

How to copy and paste without plagiarizing?

Following are the ways by which you can copy the content without getting the plagiarism content-

1. Paraphrasing

It means that you are copying the content along with the change in the words. There are many AI tools like Quillbot or Spinbot, which will help you to change the words of the line without getting caught.

2. Citing the sources

When you copy the content from others, it becomes important for you to cite the resources. When you cite the sources it means that you are not taking the credibility of other.

3. Add Quotation Mark

When you are writing a statement which is already available in books or on the internet, then you must try to add them in the quotations. This will help the reader to know that it has already been used before. 

Conclusion

As traditional education is shifting towards online education. Online education has given emerged in a lot of things edtech platforms. In this type of education, you will be getting the education via video conferencing platforms like zoom, google meet, etc. Also for keeping the records of the students schools have provided the tutors with a lot of LMS platforms like moodle. In addition to it, there are many platforms like Chegg where you can get a lot of learning material.

However, when the students are submitting the assignments and exams there may be plagiarism in it. There are many tools that can detect plagiarism in the content like safe-assign, plagScan, etc. Though there are many ways by which you can reduce plagiarism like paraphrasing, citing, etc. 

William Christie
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