Updated Jan 15, 2021
Basic Education, Literacy and Communications and Media
Basic Education, Literacy and Communications and MediaSEE LESS
India’s official literacy rate is expected to cross 80% in Census (2021). But over 60% nominally "literate" people cannot read a newspaper or a simple text. In a population of 1.25 billion (age 7+), India has: 1) 400 million (32%) good readers, 2) 600 million (48%) weak-readers, & 3) 250 million (20%) non-readers. A root cause is low quality of schooling: 50% children cannot read a Grade 2 level text, even in Grade 5. Indians live a life of "Learning Poverty" while in school and later in life.
Same Language Subtitling (SLS) is the idea of subtitling mainstream entertainment on TV in the “same” language as the audio. What you hear is what you read. For example, Hindi films and serials with the dialog and songs, subtitled in Hindi; Tamil content subtitled in Tamil, and likewise on all existing Indian language content on TV. There is compelling evidence that: a) SLS on A-V content causes automatic and inescapable reading engagement and b) measurable skill improvement among weak-readers.
|Projected Cumulative Lives Impacted||1,000,000,000|
|New Implemented Countries||India|
|Recruit||The partnership leads will decide when the size of available funding is clear. There is interest at Harvard and MIT (J-PAL and J-WEL) to associate.|
|New Feature||A national open database of clean scripts and song lyrics (this does not exist at present). Technology to automate or streamline the SLS implementation process.|
We conceived SLS (1996), proven it works and moved national policy (2019). Key team members & advisors: 1) Brij Kothari, IIM-A, Faculty 2) Tathagat Bandyopadhyay, IIM-A, Dean 3) Nirav Shah, PlanetRead, COO 4) Megha Pradhan, J-PAL South Asia: https://www.povertyactionlab.org/mpradhan 5) Sanjay Sarma, MIT: https://openlearning.mit.edu/about/our-team/sanjay-sarma 6) David Bloom, Harvard: https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/david-bloom/ 7) Vijay Kumar, MIT: http://web.mit.edu/vkumar/www/
EXECUTIVE TEAM INCLUDES WOMEN AND YOUTH