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7 African online education platforms to watch

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Image credit: Shutterstock
Image credit: Shutterstock

The impact of technology on education is one that can not be overlooked. Not only does having technology in the classroom enhance learning but it also improves the education experience and increases the level of interaction.

E-learning in Africa has come a long way and with the growth of the internet and increase in the number of people who have access to smartphones, it is reasonable to expect a boom in e-learning.

The online education opportunity has driven down the cost of education and it is an alternative that could make learning more convenient and exciting.

Although e-learning in Africa is still in its infancy, there are some organisations that are already making a mark in this space. Here are 7 online education platforms to acquire a qualification from or enhance your skills.

1. University of Africa
The University of Africa (UA) is a Private Open Distance-Learning Tertiary Institution with an expanding portfolio of study programmes and degrees being offered. Currently, these programmes include Bachelor’s Degrees in Business Administration; Commerce; Economics; Health Service Administration; Human Resource Management; Law; Logistics and Transport; Marketing; Public Administration; Tourism and many more.A process is currently underway to make all courses available online as part of our e-learning initiative.  more than 2000 students from Zambia, Zimbabwe, Uganda, South Africa and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and we are looking forward to welcoming students from Nigeria and Kenya soon.

2. Wits Plus
Wits Plus is a virtual online university offered by the University of the Witwatersrand. The platform offers fully online learning opportunities with courses that can be accessed anytime, anywhere, and are fully adaptable to all device types. Online courses are offered in partnership with DigitalCampus. Wits Plus only offers programmes for a Bachelor of Arts degree and Bachelor of Commerce degree on a part-time basis.

3. University of Rwanda
The University of Rwanda offers eLearning portal for six diploma programmes for secondary school teachers. The e-learning portal is administrated by the College of Education. The college of education is responsible for coordinating Open and Distance eLearning programmes of all UR-Colleges. The college of education also focuses on putting learning materials used in ordinary classroom training online, so all students can access them anytime.

4. Ahmadu Bello University Distance Learning
The Ahmadu Bello University Distance Learning is offered by the Ahmadu Bello University. The university has Certificate/Diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in all fields. There is a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) programme accredited by the National Universities Commission (NUC) available on the online platform. Lecture videos and study materials can be accessed offline. The e-learning portal allows students to submit assignments, interacts with lectures and tutors.

5. African Virtual University
The African Virtual University is a pan-African intergovernmental organisation with 19 member countries and is aimed at increasing access to quality higher education through the innovative use of information and communication technologies. African Virtual University (AVU), a satellite-based distance education programme which began working with the World Bank in 1995. AVU has been transformed from being a project of the World Bank to an independent reputable inter-governmental organisation based in Nairobi, Kenya with over 34 learning centers in 17 African countries. The university offers programmes in Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and more.

6. Kenyetta Digital School of Learning

In 2014 Kenyatta University (KU), launched its new KU Digital School in a move that is set to address the increased demand for improved higher education e-Learning programmes in Kenya. The Digital School offers diploma and undergraduate programmes as well as Masters degrees using blended teaching and learning that combines digital instructions with live tutorials in regional centres. The Digital School has centres in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru, Kakamega, Kericho, Nyeri, Embu, Garissa and Marsabit.

7. Unicaf University
UNICAF is an online platform offering higher education to underserved markets, in collaboration with reputable universities in the UK, US, Europe and Africa. The university offers quality higher education degrees to students in Africa and the world. Current partners include the University of South Wales (UK), the Marymount California University (USA), the University of Nicosia (Europe) and Unicaf University (Africa). Undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications are offered online or on campus. In Africa, the university has campuses and learning centres in Malawi, Nigeria, Somalia, Zimbabwe, Mauritius, Zambia and Ghana.

IT News Africa will be hosting the next edition of the Education Innovation Summit on 31 May 2017 at the Radisson Blu Gautrain in Johannesburg. Under the theme “Transforming Education With Technology”, the event will tackle issues about e-learning in Africa with interactive with roundtable discussions and case studies from leading education experts, policy makers, service providers and EduTech entrepreneurs, all sharing their experiences on what works and what does not. Make sure to book your early bird ticket by 1 May 2017.

For more information on this conference visit:

Fundisiwe Maseko

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