Designing Technical Vocation and Educational Training (TVET) Courses for the first time at the University of the South Pacific
“Throughout the world, governments are renewing efforts to promote technical and vocational education and training (TVET) with the belief that skill formation enhances productivity and sustains competitiveness in the global economy”. http://www.apjce.org/files/APJCE_12_2_67_77.pdf // The design, development and integration of TVET courses by the University of the South Pacific (USP) poses several core challenges in terms of designing the course package to be published as an Open Education Resource (OER), up-skilling the Instructional designers to design competency-based distance TVET courses and effectively incorporating it in an academic institute. While USP’s Strategic Plan 2013-2018 emphatically supports TVET, the process of operationalising the objectives has exposed several problem areas. // Both Face-to-face and Flexible learning modes are available at USP. The University of the South Pacific operates and owns its own satellite network, USPNet, which provides Internet, phone and data links, video and audio conferencing, and video broadcasting to students and staff in our 12 member countries. To meet the demands of the students in the region, the TVET course that is currently being designed consists of print, online (through Moodle) and multimedia components such as DVDs. The video-conferencing component will be made available through our video-conferencing platform: REACT (Remote Education and Conferencing Tool). // This paper focusses specifically on the challenges of designing and delivering competency-based distance TVET materials to USP’s regional students over an area of 33,000,000 km2 of ocean. Prominent among these challenges is the infancy of TVET design knowledge at a higher education institution like USP, over 200 active, indigenous language communities learning in one language (English), limited ICT infrastructure and hugely diverse social and economic backgrounds. // This paper provides a snapshot of my experiences and challenges as an Instructional designer in developing a TVET course to be published as an OER. Some of the important dimensions of OER that will be addressed in the paper are: • The potential of OER in promoting access to and enhancing the quality of education, both formal and non-formal. • The digital divide and the gender gap in the development and use of OER. • The political economy of OER development, dissemination and utilisation. • Institutional and national contexts and how they impede or promote OER development, adaptation and utilisation. • Collaborative partnerships to create OERs and overcome selected challenges. http://www.col.org/progServ/panComm/Pages/pcf.aspxfor OER // Paper ID: 488
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