This paper explores pedagogical underpinnings of current Indian open, online, and distance education. Tracing the history of national and cultural adherence to the precepts of American educational theorist and philosopher, John Dewey, the paper notes the Deweyesk perspective has not translated into constructivist distance educational practices. The work surveys the history of distance education in India, and reviews literature in the field produced by Indian academics, whose recent reports suggest that online education may be transforming Indian educational philosophy, bringing a more constructivist approach to teaching on the sub-continent.

The paper is organized into the following sections:

  • A brief history of open, distance, and online education in India
  • The role that John Dewey’s ideas play on the subcontinent
  • Philosophical underpinnings of Indian online education
  • The current state of Indian online education


John Dewey, Web 2.0, Open Education Resources, eLearning, online learning, e-education, constructivism, Pragmatism


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