Social-philosophical aspects of educational online platform at the russian internet segment

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Abstract


The article is devoted to the analysis of online platforms focused on a modern teacher in the space of the Russian-language Internet. The aim of the article is to identify the most effective online platforms, the integrated use of which will significantly increase the degree of informatization and digitalization of the educational process adequate to the current state of information culture. Such resources make it possible to broadcast various kinds of structured information, demonstrate both the content of the educational activities of teachers and its creative component, transmit and receive information remotely, which meets the requirements of a developing information society. Empirical, structural-functional and structural-typological methods were used in the study. The technological component of distance learning determines a wide range of technical capabilities, a sufficient number of existing Internet resources, and at the same time, equipment of educational institutions, licensed software, and content uniqueness remain problematic. From the standpoint of social philosophy, it is concluded that in the developing information society, the Russian education sector is faced with a situation where domestic educational online resources are ahead of the average level of information culture of teachers with their capabilities.


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Introduction

Modern global processes that have a direct impact on the education system as a whole and on the educational process in particular include intensifying informatization and digitalization, which is reflected in various spheres of social life; and for this reason, these processes and phenomena arouse research interest among representatives of modern Humanities’ various branches: philosophers, sociologists, teachers, cultural scientists, etc. With the rapid advance of technological development, there are increasingly new aspects for research in this area.

Since the informatization of society constantly imposes new requirements on the education system, this area must restructure some of its subsystems in order to be adequate to modern challenges. The goal of education in the 21st century is to form not only a competent specialist but also a self-sustained personality. Moreover, from the perspective of modern science, it is necessary to discuss changes in educational paradigms, which is reflected in the legal form and in material and resource support. Without discussing the legal aspect, it is necessary to pay considerable attention to the types, structures, and capabilities of online platforms of the Russian Internet segment that are aimed at the modern professional teacher.

The object of the research is to explore modern online resources of the Internet’s Russian-speaking segment, which provide various opportunities for expanding the professional activities of teachers in the context of digitalization and informatization in the field of education. The subject is effective online platforms of the Runet aimed at teachers of secondary and higher education.

The purpose of this study is to review several important processes for the intensification of informatization and digitalization of the educational process via online platforms, focused on the modern teacher, in the frameworks of the Russian-speaking Internet users by addressing the following tasks:

  1. To consider the variety of online platforms used in modern Russian education as well as learn the latest technologies of remote training in the fields of secondary and higher education using the structural-typological and empirical research methods;
  2. To analyze the personalization process of Russian secondary education through the creation of personal Internet resources by schoolteachers, as well as the processes of informatization of education from the standpoint of social philosophy using the structural and functional method.

Materials and methods

An integral element of modern education, both higher and secondary, is the digitalization and informatization of the learning process. A competent, structured approach to informatization of education will allow achieving systematic results in each specific subject of the Russian Federation in the shortest possible time. To form effective methods for the development of secondary and higher education at the present stage, it is necessary to identify several basic information and communication technologies (ICTs) introduced and used in the educational process.

Considering modern electronic information educational resources on the Internet, when analyzing modern educational information resources on the Internet, one should note their significant diversity. However, when considering such resources in detail, there are three main types that, although they perform similar tasks, do so using completely different technical methods:

  1. Digital educational resources (DER) are “digitally presented photos, video fragments and video tutorials, static and dynamic models, virtual reality and interactive modeling objects, graphic and cartographic materials, sound recordings, audiobooks, various symbolic and graphic objects, as well as other educational materials necessary for the organization of the educational process” [3].

Visibility is the leading characteristic of digital educational resources. This type of resource is often characterized by the lack of methodological and educational materials as well as thematic subject headings. It is clear that the main purpose of sites with DER is to present audiovisual educational material.

  1. Electronic educational resources (EOR) are “means of software, information, technical and organizational support of the educational process” [2]. A variety of electronic databases of educational data, specialized educational sites, online libraries, electronic collections by subject, and other types of catalogued educational information also belong to this type of resource.

Specific features of EOR are subject-specific catalogues, search engines, and personal authentication block (user’s personal account) on the site. EOR forms a database of educational and methodological developments created by teachers of educational organizations and consists of publicly available online educational subject platforms.

  1. E-learning educational resources (EED) are online platforms with presented software and training modules on subjects—practical electronic works for students to perform. Such sites are a system with two-factor authentication of the trainer and the trainee to form a database of evaluation results and maintain electronic reporting. For the training teacher, it is possible to integrate training data both on their personal Internet resource and the availability of uploading visual data of practical work through a cloud service.

However, despite the increase in the number of high-quality state electronic educational resources, as well as their introduction as elements of the curriculum, they are not able to solve the most important educational task. Digital resources provide access to methodological and educational developments, visual materials, and practical work, but they cannot replace the role of a teacher or curator of the educational process.

When switching to a new state education standard, the teacher is required not only to meet professional requirements but also to meet the level of computer competence that corresponds to modern realities.

The most important of these requirements is the creation of a personal Internet page (professional subject site) of the teacher, different from the official web resource of his educational organization.

Other methods of transmitting information to students by means of, for example, e-mail, or placing author’s educational developments on an electronic resource are not able to fully reflect the entire list of works performed by a modern teacher. It is evidently necessary to create a comprehensive full-fledged website or web page in order to demonstrate the different types of educational, innovative, extracurricular, organizational work of the teacher, his works and creativity. In the Russian Federation, there are several service platforms that serve as basic platforms for posting various types of information and training materials. Below is a list of service platforms with corresponding analysis of the process of personalization of the work for secondary education teachers:

  1. Multiurok (https://multiurok.ru/), a free website builder for teachers, is one of the largest websites in the Russian Federation for creating Internet pages for teachers. It is characterized by a huge amount of multimedia material, a rating system, plenty of competitions, grants and other activities.
  2. Infourok (https://infourok.ru/), materials for teachers, is the largest website in Russia both in terms of the number of registered users (about 2 million people) and in terms of the variety of courses offered, competitions and multimedia material presented by teachers.
  3. The social network of educational workers, Nasha Set (https://nsportal.ru/), is one of the most popular platforms for creating personal Internet pages among Russian teachers. Its distinctive feature is the integration of preschool, primary and secondary school areas on the site. The site contains a large library of articles and educational visual materials in these areas.
  4. The educational portal, “ProShkolu.ru” (https:// proshkolu.ru/), is a popular Russian resource for communication of teachers, their participation in scientific and educational activities, and where it is also possible to create personal Internet pages. It contains a large amount of useful educational information, including an extensive collection of multimedia applications.

It is also important to examine the materials are that are needed to create a website, the process of preparing them for publication, as well as working with designers of specialized sites.

A common feature of all platforms for creating a teacher’s web page is the structure of the personal account on a specific site, which is allocated to new users. This personal account contains pages or modules that are completely missing information at the initial stage.

To design a full-fledged website, submit it for teacher certification and work with educational organizations and colleagues, the teacher must conduct preparatory work on collecting material and filling in information blocks.

The types of information required for a full-fledged site can be divided into four types:

  1. Texts (general ones and materials of educational developments);
  2. Photo (to fill in the teacher’s profile and gallery);
  3. Video (demonstration of the material);
  4. Presentations (visual training material).

For texts that will be used as educational materials on a personal website, it is recommended to pass a check on the resource Antiplagiat (https://www.antiplagiat.ru/)–Russian system for detecting text borrowings–to exclude copyright issues in relation to a particular text published by the teacher.

When uploading photos and videos, one must keep in mind the legal restrictions that apply to published materials. There is a prohibition for propaganda of drugs, alcohol, smoking, religious and extremist organizations, as well as content containing photos and videos with naked children.

Concerning the modules of the structure for a teacher’s personal web page, when creating a teacher’s personal page after the registration procedure, the site user is faced with a certain menu structure provided by the developer. Many educational websites use similar elements with the same information content. The most frequently used site blocks or modules are:

  1. Profile–This is an information questionnaire for the teacher. He or she must fill in a certain number of data points “About me.”.” Each of these items is characterized by text suggestions to the user. Also, the profile page always involves displaying a portrait photo of the teacher.
  2. Photo Gallery–This is a page dedicated specifically for posting photos of the teacher, team, students, the educational process, and extracurricular activities.
  3. Blog–This is the news section of the site containing various relevant information. It should also be noted that this section of the site most often hosts video clips.
  4. Development–This section contains lessons and presentations by a schoolteacher.
  5. Achievements–The site module containing text and photo information in the form of scanned copies of certificates, commendations, diplomas and other award documentation.
  6. Contacts and Feedback–These sections contain information about the educational organization of the teacher. They also give the site’s guest or the student’s parent the opportunity of leaving a text message to the teacher.

When preparing material for creating a personal Internet page, most users do not have sufficient ICT skills to immediately create the right site and fill it with high-quality content. The following design sites are useful:

  1. Jimdo (https://www.jimdo.com/) is a free site management system developed in Germany with eight language localizations. The Jimdo designer is user-friendly with fully editable design templates;
  2. uKit (https://ukit.com/ru) is a Russian constructor of sites from the company uKit Group. It allows someone without programming knowledge to build a business card site with an order form, a single-page site or a small online store, independently optimize key pages for search and publish the site on the Internet;
  3. uCoz (https://www.ucoz.com/) is a free site management and hosting system for sites creation, developed by the uKit Group. UCoz modules can be used in a single bundle to create a full-featured website or separately, for example, as a blog platform, online store, etc.;
  4. Setup (https://www.setup.ru/) is a website builder, an automated service for creating and promoting websites. Due to its user-friendliness, one does not need to have a deep knowledge of programming and web design.”

With the help of above sites, one can create a fully working web page and practice creating individual modules. Privacy settings for these sites allow one to make individual modules visible only to the page-account owner.

However, even after having formed a full-fledged system of information resources for teachers of educational organizations, it is impossible to imagine a fully functioning structure of the educational process with the use of information computer technologies without using various means focused on distance learning.

The most popular forms of such education are widely used today in the field of secondary and higher education. In the Russian Federation, the following types of distance learning technologies using ICT are being introduced into training programs:

  1. Video conference is a meeting organized using video technologies to communicate with people in different places;
  2. Audio conference is a type of remote conference where its participants communicate by telephone or other equipment specially designed for voice communication;
  3. Computer teleconference is a subspecies of video conferencing where personal computers are used, equipped with a module for high-speed Internet connection, a microphone and a digital webcam. When organizing such teleconferences for distance learning, its subjects use twoor multi-channel video and audio systems;
  4. Video lecture is a specific type of training using ICT, which involves the use of video materials that can be stored both on individual electronic media and on web servers;
  5. Chat class is an educational event that takes place using special chat technologies. Chat is a program for communication, where two or more participants, connected to the Internet, communicate in real time via text messages sent from personal computers or gadgets;
  6. Web lessons (web classes) are training sessions conducted remotely, which can take place in the format of various educational activity forms, where modern telecommunications tools and other Internet resources are used.
  7. Teleconferences are classes held for an audience that gathers mainly via email. In the field of education, teleconferences are designed to solve certain educational tasks;
  8. Webinars are a special interactive type of training where students can have the opportunity to interact with the teacher. Students receive a link sent by email, clicking on which they find themselves in the “webinar room,” that is, a section of a specialized site designed to conduct this training;
  9. Web coaching is a specific form of training wherein the teacher (or coach) provides students with a practical video instruction;
  10. Podcast is a short training video created using content on a specific topic.

To effectively implement the use of remote technologies in the educational process, the technical training of an educational organization must meet certain requirements: In the first place, computer class running operating systems should be created; secondly, the network equipment should be installed; lastly, a high-speed Internet access (the so-called guaranteed speed channel) should be organized.

In addition, the educational organization must have projection equipment (multimedia projectors, interactive whiteboards), licensed basic software, such as Moodle, E-STUDY, ATutor, Teachbase, and additional remote desktop management software (such as Microsoft Remote Desktop, TeamViewer, AnyDesk).

A separate line should specify the mandatory requirements for information security, including the antivirus and network software for working on the Internet (standard software, such as antivirus program, network firewall, “parental control” among others).

Based on the discussion above, it is important to analyze the processes of informatization in the educational sphere from the standpoint of social philosophy.

In the context of a globalizing society and the development of new information technologies, the problems of informatization in the educational sphere are particularly acute. It is obvious that this issue, both in practical and theoretical aspects, currently appears as one of the most relevant.

First and foremost, it is necessary to talk about a paradigm shift and the formation of a new type of information and communication thinking, characterized by the complexity of modernization trends in modern education, “which are characterized by democratization, humanistic orientation, variability, continuity, individualization and, at the same time, mass character, as well as social inconsistency of traditions and innovations” [1, p. 3]. The modern sphere of education needs innovations that are introduced into the educational process and contribute to the realization of creative opportunities that are constantly emerging in the conditions of information society.

At this moment, the processes of informatization in education are carried out rather unevenly, which is determined by their inconsistency. Current infrastructure of the education sector in the Russian Federation assumes putting informatization programs in the first place, but this is not supported at least technically. One must consider the fact that “informatization” carried out nominally, at the administrative level only, significantly reduces the degree of opportunities for personal development, which has its consequences on the level of education quality. This leads to manifestations of artificial contradictions in the educational system in general.

Essential changes in the informatization of education reveal the need for professional training and retraining of specialists who can make a constructive contribution to the formation of an information and communication environment both at the present stage of its development and in the future, professionally training those who will conduct scientific research and work as teachers in educational institutions. The urgent need for such specialists makes us look at the level of teachers’ and students’ information literacy in a different way. Underestimating the importance of competent informatization of education, implementing its insufficient organization in the educational process, allowing significant gaps in state educational standards in relation to informatization issues, the Russian society is already facing and will continue to face serious problems in training modern specialists who will be uncompetitive and will not be able to constructively build their professional activities in a constantly updated information society.

Conclusion

Based on the analysis of various online platforms used in modern Russian education, it can be concluded that only a comprehensive systematic use of various electronic educational resources will significantly increase the degree of informatization and digitalization of the educational process in Russian educational institutions.

Analysis of the processes of personalization in Russian secondary education through the creation of personal Internet pages by teachers suggests that these resources are characterized by the implementation of several functions simultaneously. First of all, they allow broadcasting of various information processed and structured by teachers in order to consolidate the knowledge of students who can access a specific page at any time. In addition, these resources enable teachers to demonstrate not only the content of their educational activities but also their creative component. Finally, the teacher’s web page with educational and visual materials, to a certain extent, meets the challenges of the developing information society when such resources allow one to get information remotely.

The current technological component of distance learning in the field of education appears in several aspects at once. On the one hand, one can see a wide range of technical capabilities that allow a teacher to work with different types of information and broadcast them almost without losing the quality and value of their own material. It is also noted that there are sufficient existing Internet resources designed to post the results of the teacher’s work. On the other hand, the technical equipment of educational institutions, the availability of licensed software, the originality and uniqueness of the content developed by teachers remain urgent problems.

Thus, analyzing the processes of informatization of education from the standpoint of social philosophy, one is faced with a situation where, at the present stage of development of the information society, the domestic sphere of education faces challenges due to a change in paradigms; where effective online platforms on the Russian segment of the Internet, focused on teachers and their capabilities, are largely ahead of the general level of teachers’ information literacy.

About the authors

Anton V. Gerasimov

Crimean Federal V.I. Vernadsky University

Author for correspondence.
Email: gersimf@gmail.com

Russian Federation, Simferopol

Applicant for the Department of Philosophy of Social and Humanitarian Profile

References

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