eLearning in Developing Countries: October 2-22, 2007

Barriers to e-learning in developing countries

Re: Barriers to e-learning in developing countries

by j. Tim Denny -
Number of replies: 0
Nalin

I really like the ideas on creating policy.  Yes it can be said that policy means nothing unless it has proponents behind pushing to ensure the policy is enacted. Yet, I am still a big believer that we must have the policy infrastructure in place so that sector wide stakeholders can refer back to guiding principles.

A few suggestions:
  • each country needs a well written ICT-education policy - of which e-learning should be clearly understood
  • such policy must be followed up with clearly written action and implementation plans

assessment  -- in order for that to occur each country must have a clear view of what education projects are happening, where, when and all results...
  • for this a good open access project database needs to be supported
Inventory
  • a database of all ICT assets can be drawn up so that potential partners know what is available, thereby making their job of delivering programs easier
Feasibility
  • a proper understanding of e-learning feasibility which must include extensive observation of teaching situations, teacher capacities and other elements that lead to a positive or negative recommendation for e-learning should be carried out.
Some thoughts...
I often here the word government in such contexts...   I think government is great when it works, yet when it is ineffective in a developing world context how can we ensure ICT-education continues regardless of a lack of understanding or support of the government sector?  Are there ways to circumvent government and deemphasize their role? Luckily in the Cambodia context we have an ICT-education policy and a leadership that wants to see the changes, yet I know many countries do not have such support.

Major needs in the Cambodia perspective
  • electricity - most all electric generation is diesel generator derived - we need varied sources, alternative energy, rural energy schemes and of course much more affordable energy to persist on ICT initiatives
  • lack of hardware...  of the 253 upper secondary schools only some 10 have a computer lab... leaving a deficit of some 15,000 computers needed to complete administrative and student facilities at a ratio of 1:20
  • teacher training - lack of clear plan, initiatives and understanding of how, what and where to train
  • connectivity -  due to immensely expensive internet access internet is inaccessible in the foreseeable future outside of the big cities..

PEace
Tim
__________________________________
John "Tim"  Denny, Ph.D.  ICT and Education Specialist
Adviser to the Cambodia MoEYS on Science and Technology Education
Executive Director, PC4peace http://www.pc4peace.org
http://www.avuedigitalservices.com/VR/drjtdenny
Co-founder Open Schools Program - Cambodia
    "Honest disagreement is often a good sign of progress."   Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948).