Main Article Content
Aim: To identify infrastructure facilities used by the students for digital education as well as to find out the significant difference in knowledge and skills of various online tools before and after lockdown.
Study Design: Exploratory design.
Place and Duration of Study: Students from the government, aided colleges, and state agriculture universities in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana were administered the questionnaire in May 2020.
Methodology: A total of 315 students (age range under 20-40 years) actively participating in online classes were chosen.
Results: The majority of the students possessed mobile phones even before lockdown and used them for digital learning. Students reported an increase in the amount spent on internet connectivity per month (50%), increased usage of data (70%), and increased recharge amount (46%). Since the overall mobile data usage of the students has greatly increased, consequently the amount spent on the internet also has increased after lockdown. Although most students (90.48%) were aware of online education, only 30.79% were enrolled in online classes before lockdown. Three fourth of the students were using smartphones for accessing online classes and more than fifty per cent of the students were spending two to three hours per day in the digital learning process. When it came to knowledge up-gradation, 48.89% of the students have not made use of any e-learning platform, only 21.27% used the Swayam e-learning portal, and 12.06% used UGC MOOCs. During the lockdown, students were actively participating in the online classes, which could be gleaned from their knowledge of various apps. There was a significant difference in the students’ usage of various applications before and after lockdown. There exists a significant difference between students’ knowledge of usage of apps, data, the amount spent, and time spent in the digital learning process during Covid-19. Students who were active in the online classes inadvertently consumed more amounts of mobile data, which gave them continuous network coverage enabling them to finish assignments, attend webinars, and in turn improved their knowledge.
Conclusion: Despite hardships, the students were actively engaged in digital learning during the lockdown period imposed due to Covid-19 by adapting to the new normal mode of online education.
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