||Africa: Africa’s e-Learning Revenues to hit $512.7m by 2016
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||Monday, April 22, 2013
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||Apr 22, 2013
“Africa is experiencing a technological surge and it is having a dramatic effect on education throughout the continent. Tech hubs are blossoming; new mobile devices and apps are being designed and produced in Africa, by Africans, and Africa’s e-Learning market is now the fastest-growing in the world.”
Currently, a record number of proposals had been submitted and more attendees are expected, than ever before, at the e-Learning Africa 2013 forum, which the organisers said was an effect of the technology boom.
E-Learning Africa is the continent’s leading forum for the technology-assisted learning industry, bringing together a wide range of perspectives on Information and Communications Technology for development, education and training.
Now in its eighth year, eLearning Africa celebrates the rise of made in Africa solutions, according to a statement from the group.
In its annual e-Learning Africa roundtable, said that the forum always brought together education and ICT ministers from across Africa.
“The focus is on innovation and we are all really proud that some of the most exciting and innovative new solutions in education have been pioneered and developed in Africa”, the founder of e-Learning Africa, Mrs. Rebecca Stromeyer, was quoted as saying.
The statement said local innovation revealed itself in many forms; an application of this was in the Dadaab refugee camp, Kenya, where the installation of solar-powered ICTs in 39 schools, and an innovative community-based maintenance and sustainability programme had overcome the traditionally problematic language barriers in the camp and improved the prospects of 80,000 young people.
Stakeholders in Nigeria’s Information Technology and educational sectors recently called for the adoption of e-Learning in schools, it recalled.
They stressed the need for the introduction of IT tools to schools to enable students to acquire knowledge out of their learning environment.
E-Learning refers to the use of various kinds of electronic media and Information and Communication Technologies in education.
It is an inclusive terminology that encompasses all forms of educational technology that electronically or technologically support learning and teaching.
It said, depending on whether a particular aspect, component or delivery method was given emphasis, e-Learning could be termed technology-enhanced learning, computer-based training, Internet-based training, web-based training, online education, virtual education, or digital educational collaboration.
According to stakeholders, it is now clear that online learning will provide more people with access to good education, as almost everybody wants to be educated but some do not find physical classrooms attractive.
Policy makers and educational managers across West Africa are also urged to adopt new measures that reflect technology towards increasing the number of persons given admission and to also improve the content of learning.
A former Vice-Chancellor, University of Lagos, Prof. Oye Ibidapo-Obe, said e-Learning had brought about a paradigm shift in education, training and development, while making the learning environment easier, more flexible, attractive, and meaningful for the delivery of educational content without the constraint of time and location.
“The learning environment has changed to improve the possibility of high skill transfer through ICT in a way that was once inconceivable,” Ibidapo-Obe added.
The Director-General, Administrative Staff College of Nigeria, Mr. A. A. Peters, described e-Learning as an approach to facilitate and enhance learning by means of personal computers, CD-ROMS and the Internet.
He said e-Learning had become a veritable window to improve skills at the workplace without having to contend with the problem of leaving work to school.
Technology, he noted, had brought the classroom to the worker in his living room and place of work.
“New skills can be acquired and work efficiency improved without having to leave the work environment,” he said.