Online Learning Update leads me to this article: Hi-Tech Technology, a Strong Enabler for Nigerian Education, which I find interesting but rather biased.
Its focus – or Kayode Jegede’s focus – is that ICT will enhance students conditions in general, for having better access to better materials, interactivity and so.
Ok, right, this is obvious. But I guess this is not the point in bringing ICT to Nigeria or wherever in sub-Saharan Africa (and other underdeveloped places). And the key is no in “enhancing” but in “making possible”.
- First thing ICT will or can do in underdeveloped countries, before enhancing education, is making it possible in some places where education there’s just not
Ok, ok, we’ve got education everywhere. Yeah? You really think so? Let’s imagine this is true. What conditions? And I don’t mean the classroom has poor materials, not up-to-date, not attractive to students, etc. I mean there’s just one teacher that reaches the little village twice per week and teaches kids ranging from 5 to 15 years old.
Thus, when talking about “enhancing” education I think we should talk about this kind of enhancing, not making classes that actually work more attractive – I don’t say this is not to be done, but it is not what I’d call a development primary issue.
- Enhancing deals with content and teaching segmentation for students of different ages and different education levels
- Enhancing deals with training the trainers so that they can specialize or deepen their generic training
- Enhancing means creating a virtual network of trainers/teachers so they can reach one another in order to solve problems, share best practices and be present – even virtually – in places they wouldn’t instead
Once this is reached, then we can talk about multimedia materials and interactive elite e-learning. Doing it before is just frivolity.
If you need to cite this article in a formal way (i.e. for bibliographical purposes) I dare suggest:
Peña-López, I. (2004) “Hi-Tech Technology, a Strong Enabler for Nigerian Education” In ICTlogy,
#4, January 2004. Barcelona: ICTlogy.
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