Technological Interventions in Open and Distance Learning System: A Case Study of Brittle Bone Disease learners in Kerala
Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI), also referred to as the brittle bone disease is a rare congenital ailment characterised by bones that are very brittle and hence, prone to fractures. Such afflicted persons are often found left with little or no support from the Conventional system or the Open and Distance Learning (ODL) system to pursue their education. Therefore, most of them remain deprived of School Education or Higher Education. Such learners have very specific learning needs and therefore, it calls for appropriate technological interventions under the ODL system to overcome the challenges faced by them due to their debilitating physical conditions. Quality research work in the field of innovative pedagogical technologies for such special learners in ODL system is either absent or at a very nascent stage. This study is a novel effort in this direction to address the glaring gap in the existing practices with respect to providing appropriate technology based solutions to address the learning needs of the special OI learners through the ODL system. An empirical study was conducted among twenty
special learners, suffering from this ailment to identify the most appropriate components for development of a suitable technology driven Learning Management System (LMS) to effectively cater to their learning needs. Structured questionnaire was developed to elicit responses from this sample. Relevant information collected with respect to the specific requirements of such special learners, gave valuable inputs and insights to develop an LMS to cater to the techno-pedagogical needs of the OI learners.