Utilization of Open and Distance Learning in Addressing Educational Challenges: Case of the Flagship Projects Initiatives of the University of Nairobi
Odumbe, Jeckoniah O
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This paper is a documentary presentation and discussion of the major Issues and Educational Challenges that face Kenya towards its Fulfillment of Vision 2030 which has been set as Economic development Landmark to turn around this country and how open and distance learning address those challenges. The paper identifies the magnitude of required capacity to undertake the training and -in-servicing of the working Kenyans for the provision of new skills and change of mindset of the key managers on carrying out their business to be result and outcome oriented without removing them from their jobs or workplace. It discusses the justification and relevance of the specific Flagship Projects offered by open and distance modes using e-learning and printed modules with online learner support and how they were identified to be part of the performance contract at the College of Education and External Studies. The academic programmes under mounted and offered under this initiative from 2011/2012 performance contract were: • Master of Arts in Project Planning and Management which provides capacity for result oriented management, • Master of Distance Education which is intended to provide high level managers and implementers of open and distance programme. The second set of programmes being mounted this year under this initiative in 2012/2013 are as follows: • Master of Education Administration and Planning and • Master of Educational Foundations. This paper discusses the collaborative arrangements and modalities of implementing these projects in line with Vision 2030 guidelines and objectives. It further discusses the detailed operations involved in the realization of these projects through the collaboration of the Centre for Open and Distance Learning, Centre of e-Learning, School of Education and the School of Continuing and Distance Education. Finally the paper discusses the outcomes, challenges of implementation and concludes by recommending that open and distance learning which provides education to peoples anywhere and anytime of the learners convenience is the way to go as a strategy for building capacity in the working people for the fulfillment of the Vision 2030.