International Centre for Distance Education and Open Learning (ICDEOL)
Teaching through distance mode is now recognised as an effective method of instruction in all the advanced countries of the world. In the fast developing socio-economic milieu of today, educational facilities need constant refurbishing and augmentation. It is now acknowledged by the academics of all shades that it is learning which is important and not the channel or the process through which one gets enrolled for education. The educational system in India has been changing from time to time, taking into consideration the socio-political needs and economic conditions of the society. Although the contribution to the various branches of learning by the conventional educational system cannot be underestimated, the fact remains that education through the formal mode has been accessible only to a few. The distance and open education system as an alternative mode of imparting instruction has, over the years, been meeting the demand for education of millions of people at different levels. It is an effort not only to solve the problem of over-crowding in our-educational institutions but also to equip the adult community with the tools and skills to attain professional competence. Over the past four decades various Indian universities have adopted the programme of distance education or open learning. Realising the importance of the system, Indira Gandhi National Open University was established in 1985 in New Delhi.
Immediately after its establishment in 1970, the Himachal Pradesh University took a bold step towards proliferation of knowledge and democratisation of educational opportunities by setting up a Directorate of Correspondence Courses in 1971. The University has played a pioneering role in launching the programme of distance education at the postgraduate level. It was the first to impart instruction at postgraduate level in social-sciences, humanities, commerce and teacher training through the mode of distance education. Research studies at M.Phil. level were also introduced through this medium in the various disciplines. Over the years, the Directorate of Correspondence Courses moved towards absorbing the emerging philosophy of distance education and adopting multi-media approach to impart instruction. In view of this, the Directorate of Correspondence Courses has now been rechristened as the International Centre for Distance Education and Open Learning (ICDEOL). It is located in the H.P. University complex at Summer Hill, a suburb at the western end of Shimla, 5 Km from the main town. Summer Hill Railway Station is a 5 minutes walk from the ICDEOL complex.
The library of ICDEOL at Shimla remains open from 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. throughout the year except on Second Saturday, Sunday and other University holidays.