President APJ Abdul Kalam launches the Edusat Distance Learning project, enabling students throughout India to attend world-class lectures via videoconference.
Education is taking on a whole new dimension in India. In July, Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam launched a revolutionary new education service courtesy of Edusat, the world’s first satellite dedicated strictly to education. Edusat was built by the Indian Space Research Organization of the Department of Space and is a component of the India National Education Project.
As part of the Edusat project, Hughes implemented DIRECWAY broadband satellite service at six sites to provide interactive distance learning via a PC-based teaching system. Not only can students in India now attend world-class lectures by videoconference from their schools, they can also participate in live, interactive sessions with instructors. Students can ask questions and receive teachers’ responses in real time, and instructors can give verbal quizzes, clarify material, and enhance the learning experience with back and forth discussion. The interactive component of this service also enables direct video in which students and teachers can see each other.
Edusat’s primary goal is to offer universal education, even in remote areas, and improve the quality of life in rural parts of the country. For students and teachers in India, satellite distance learning is the next best thing to being there.