eLearning in Developing Countries: October 2-22, 2007

Human factor

Human factor

by Nalin Abeysekera -
Number of replies: 7

I have been involving with the students and lectures as well as school teachers in Sri Lanka.I am always conscious on this topic. We have our own problems. But I think we can generalize it to Asian Perspective. Many people talk about infrastructure, resources, and so on…yes they can be considering as barriers. but I think we need real champion…real leader to initiate e-Learning in countries like Sri Lanka….because there are problems always from the Environment….(PESTLE factors)….to address to these human factor is very important. We should talk about transformational leaders…!!!!<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

In reply to Nalin Abeysekera

Re: Human factor

by Dr. Nellie Deutsch -
Nalin,
You make an excellent point when you mention the human element and transformational leadership. However, what about teacher training? Research in online learning suggests the importance of teacher training. According to research findings, "students need to see effective communication modeled by instructors" in order to benefit from online learning. Although  most of the interaction in online discussions is student-to-student, timely feedback from facilitators is crucial (Tallent-Runnels, Thomas, Lan, Cooper, Ahern, Shaw, & Liu, 2006). How do e educational institutions in Sri Lanka and other developing and non-developing countries address the issue of teacher training?

Tallent-Runnels, M. K., Thomas, J. A., Lan, Cooper, S. Ahern, T. C., Shaw, S. M., & Liu, X. (2006, Spring). Teaching courses online: A review of the research. Review of Educational Research, 76(1), 93-135.
In reply to Dr. Nellie Deutsch

Re: Human factor

by Nalin Abeysekera -

In sri Lanka we have been trained through Distance Education Partnership Programme - DEPP (depp.nodes.lk), We National Online Distance Education Service (NODES) Community and once you login there (depp.nodes.lk/course) you can identify how well Dr. Chulantha Kulasekara and the staff doing continuously develop the knowledge of the community.. DEPP always focus on Tutoring and Mentoring (Assess the required knowledge and skills of tutors and mentors, develop job descriptions, undertake training programmes, and create training materials, and present a plan for recruiting, selecting and monitoring performance of tutors)<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

And at Open University in Sri Lanka we have been trained under Capacity Enhancement Programme (OUSL-CE).Still this is new to the country and I know other universities of the system too conducting programs.

In reply to Nalin Abeysekera

Re: Human factor

by Dr. Nellie Deutsch -
Nalin,
Would it be possible for educators from other countries to join in the discussions and share learning and mentoring ideas?
In reply to Dr. Nellie Deutsch

Re: Human factor

by Nalin Abeysekera -

Sorry for the late reply…these are things we are experiencing as barriers in developing countries…(connectivity)..

About educators from other countries to join in the discussions…. Yes, it is great…then we can share the knowledge as well as experience…!!!!!!

In reply to Nalin Abeysekera

Re: Human factor

by Inge Ignatia de Waard -
Nalin

You make a very good point. Leaders and government enable a lot in whether or not a country and its educational institutes will accept new technologies for educational purposes. The implication on laws, budgetting, etcetera is enormous and needs to be carried by and with the government to enable successful implementation of eLearning on all educational levels.

During eLearning Africa I got in contact with Spider a Swedish program for ICT in developing countries who also did research on the necessities of eGovernment and the benefits.
In reply to Inge Ignatia de Waard

Re: Human factor

by Nalin Abeysekera -

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Thanks for your sharing of information…yes i personally believe first we have to identify the barriers. But we can do something for given resources….in developing countries there is a huge problem of utilizing of resources..for that I think the governments and people specially officers in that respective sectors should  responsible for that….that’s why I am always proposing the good leadership..a good champion…is needed..In management we called them as transformational leaders…Achievement oriented culture should be there to increase the awareness as well as usage of e-Learning.It will helpful for the identification of barriers as well.....