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  • IMPRESSIONS from a Cross-section

    Topic

    What has been the biggest takeaway from the pandemic?

    Biggest learning was adaptability
    Ever since the pandemic commenced, education systems have come into focus for their quick adaptability to the new normal in terms of training faculties and students alike on the online platform. Fibre2Fashion asked few deans of fashion institutes about what they thought was the biggest takeaway from the pandemic.


    The biggest takeaway is that our students were able to apply their cognitive skills effectively and explored technology to achieve a better learning. Students across India attended master classes from the industry, design academicians and got national and international faculty support.

    Students’ takeaway was self-study as they realised the importance of independence and it was a big eye-opener for everyone. Teachers’ takeaway was keeping a positive approach, patience and high energy, thus bridging the gap between the students and institution.

    The biggest takeaway has been the confidence it has given to adapt to any circumstance and fight with resilience. It also put a whole new focus on the learner and on how he/she can learn in the best possible way. It allowed us to look at education more critically, use multiple modes of teaching, draw from a diversity of resources and reinforce the three-dimensional role of the teacher, facilitator and mentor.

    The biggest learning was adaptability. It brought to the fore the importance of having a strong supportive leadership. As an institute, several new SOPs were put in place to ensure that learning remained uninterrupted. Universal remote access was set up, allowing students to access all their data on the WWI servers as well as the high-end computing resources on campus from their homes. We have used multiple platforms to host classes and introduced new software that has helped continued learning in the absence of materials that were once conventionally used. Master classes, guest lectures and workshops with industry professionals continued online. All theory classes were conducted online, with practicals, workshops and shoots being done on campus in smaller student groups. We ensured the lessons were engaging, interactive and effective, and our students were learning something new with every lesson.

    The pandemic has enabled us to evaluate our role, and especially with regards to design education it has given an opportunity to students to investigate new ways of design practice and significance of design as an agent of change and power. Through our new modes of education, we have highlighted the importance of these skills. The graduating students have witnessed the transition to a hybrid education and gain a broader perspective on the possibilities of design creation..

    Before the pandemic, there was a lack of upgradation of the curriculum/data and teachers through training programmes, participation in webinars/seminars and industry interaction.

    Industry experience should be the criteria for the selection of trainers. Managements need to support and promote teachers’ training programmes. Institutes can offer online fashion education in certain subjects but have to be supported by industry interaction and practicals. With digital couture, digital clothing, and crypto fashion weeks being the new buzz, educationists must remember that learning is a constant process with a willingness to adapt and innovate by both trainers and trainees.

    This article was first published in the?July 2021?edition of the print magazine.

    Published on: 14/07/2021

    DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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