1 National University of Science and Technology (NUST) (PAKISTAN)
2 National University of Science and Technology (PAKISTAN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN15 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Pages: 6147-6153
ISBN: 978-84-606-8243-1
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2015
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Technology has confronted many educational challenges, especially in maximizing the reach of quality education in rural areas through the introduction of e-learning environments. The major challenging educational situation in Pakistan is the low literacy rate and poor accessibility to quality education. 25 million out of school children and literacy rate of only 54% is a great threat to Pakistan’s progress. In this context, establishing virtual classrooms is beneficial in the achievement of literacy goals and to abridge accessibility issues. Illiteracy pushed the marginalized children to accept their oppressed condition without challenging it. According to Freire, language is a great tool for emancipation from oppression and empowerment. Freirean critical literacy methodology is based on the adoption of critical pedagogy both in formal and informal learning environments. Freirean methodology has been adopted by many researches and results generated has confirmed its effectiveness for emancipation of marginalized populations.

An action research was conducted to discuss the methodological implications of critical pedagogy and to explore its implementation and effectiveness in virtual classrooms. The paper discusses two themes that are “critical pedagogy and virtual classrooms” and proposes that they both can be mutually supportive educational traditions for emancipation of underprivileged children. The paper then argues for a conscious synthesis that blends the two discourses into a critical pedagogy of rural areas of Pakistan. The primary objective of this research is to emphasize on the spatial aspects of social experience and to promote emancipation through language literacy. A virtual class was established for literacy development of working children using already existing ICT resources deployed within a gaming zone.

This emancipatory study is based on intervention where 6 out of school children of Quetta were taught in a Virtual Classroom using the phenomenon of Language Emancipation. The study examines issues in the language of underprivileged and proposed pedagogy that constitutes important determinants of Emancipation according to Freirean Literacy Methodology. The strengths and weaknesses of the research approach are also discussed. This article follows a qualitative approach in understanding aspects of emancipatory action research. The research concludes in the situation where oppressed is getting more oppressed, Language emancipation can be a viable solution. Its implementation in already running gaming zone has decreased the resources limitation and helped to convert the recreational places into rich virtual learning spaces.
Emancipation, Constructivist Theory, Literacy, Freire’s methodology, Distance Learning, Virtual Classroom.