Broadly speaking, two important factors are discernible in communication process:
1. Technology of Mass Instruction: The four types of technology which are largely in vogue are :-
(a) Broadcast on an educational channel;
(b) Broadcast on a commercial channel;
(c) Closed circuit in which instructors are used either to supplement instruction or to provide direct instruction exclusive of classroom teachers’, and
(d) Open type in which filmed lectures are distributed via the closed circuit medium as replacement for classroom teachers.
In all cases the desire is to reach more students with fewer teachers and to obtain ‘quality’ instruction.
2. Technology of Individual Instruction
There arc approximately five types:
(a) Individual reading papers and similar devices.
(b) Individual viewing and listening equipment for existing slides, filmstrips, motion pictures and recordings.
(c) Language laboratories of all types.
(d) Specifically programmed printed material such as scrambled text-books.
(e) True teaching machines of the skinner of press type containing carefully worked out verbal or pictorial programmes to test student reaction and inform of his progress, errors, etc.
A combination of mass instruction system and technology of individual instruction is being probed and tried out.
Communication techniques form the concrete bridge to help the learner reach the goal. Communication involves: the communicator (the teacher), the communicated (the public) and the message (Lesson). When the process of communication takes place in a linear direction, as shown below:
Communicator Communication Communicated
(Teacher) (Message and process) (Learner-receiver)
There is only one-sided activity. The teacher alone talks, the pupil may or may not bear or respond. On the other hand, if communication is effected in such a manner that pupils who are the receivers will also responds, as illustrated in the circular or triangular diagram. Teaching and Learning become inseparable and communication, a two-way process.
In the circular or triangular process, communication If, a mutual experience.
The communicator communicates the message. The pupil receives the message from, and reacts and responds to the teacher through his expressions. Thus the teacher gels to know whether or not the pupils have received the message. Such evaluation is an integral part of good teaching.
One who teaches should also learn. A teacher cannot teach satisfactorily, unless she learns also simultaneously as shown by the feed-back in the two-way arrows in the diagram. In order to facilitate the cyclic, circular, triangular, never-ending process of communication, the teacher needs communication-skills, which arc gained through a knowledge of the methods of teaching, outlined in the next chapter. In recent terminology, “method” has been replaced by “technique” and ‘Educational technology’ is used to signify “teaching”.
Ever since the advent of modernization, the concept of ‘Literacy’ is changing to “mediacy”. The concept of ‘chalk-board’ is changing to ‘sky-board’. The concept of classroom too may change. Hence factors concerning communication processes are tending towards the adoption of educational technology, which has the following six full-fledged types. These are:
(b) Software production and communication technology.
(c) Systems technology.
(d) Hardware technology,
(c) Management technology
(e) Planning technology.