Browsing 06. Pan-Commonwealth Forum 6 (PCF6), 2010 by Subject "Community Development"
Now showing 1 - 20 of 26
Results Per Page
- ItemOpen AccessAnalysing the development of institutional policies for sustainability and quality of OERs with a focus on the Australian context(2010-11) Bossu, CarinaStimulated by funding from benefactors such as the Hewlett Foundation and UNESCO, the OER movement has been growing rapidly since 2001, providing educational content freely to institutions and learners across the world through the Internet. Many organizations perceive benefits both for themselves and for learners elsewhere in distributing their learning resources in this way. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) OpenCourseWare initiative (OCW), set up in 2001, makes content available freely from most of MIT’s courses and has provided the inspiration for many similar institutional projects. When the MIT OCW site was officially launched the following year, over 500 courses were available. By 2004 there were 900, and the total reached 1250 in 2005. Even more impressive were visitor numbers. By 2005, MIT’s OCW site had received more than 8.5 million visits, and visitors were growing by 56% per annum (MIT 2006). Equally significant was the speed with which the MIT OCW site demonstrated its value to the institution. In 2006, it was reported that 35% of new MIT students had based their choice of institution, in whole or in part, on their exposure to the MIT OCW site. It was also reported that 71% of MIT students using the OCW site found its content helpful or extremely helpful in their studies (MIT 2006). As expected, the MIT OCW project provided a model for other universities worldwide and saw the establishment of the OpenCourseWare Consortium (OCWC). Currently, the OCWC has over two hundred institutional members worldwide (OCW 2008). // By the end of 2006, there were signs that the OER movement had reached maturity. An important sign were developments in Europe, where alternatives to the MIT model emerged. One of these was OpenLearn, launched by the Open University (OU) in October 2006, which was intended to publish the widest possible selection of OU course materials. It was also intended to do much more: its explicit goal was to engage and support self-directed learners using the latest Web 2.0 technologies. The site would not only host user-generated content (material created by individuals and organisations outside the higher education sector), it would also provide social networking tools to empower users to build their own learning communities (Shuller 2006). By mid-2007, 560,000 individuals had visited the OpenLearn site. In a single week in June 2007, the site had 8,000 visitors from the UK, 6,000 visitors from the United States and another 4,500 from the rest of the world. More importantly, there were 19,000 registered users (Taylor 2007). By April 2008, over 4,400 OpenLearn users had become fully-fledged Open University students. This represented additional teaching income of ₤2.7 million for the institution (Gourley & Lane 2009). // These initiatives form what is now known as the open educational resource movement, which promotes “the open provision of educational resources, enabled by information and communication technologies, for consultation, use and adaptation by a community of users for non-commercial purposes” (UNESCO 2002, p. 24). While the term "open educational resources" was first adopted by UNESCO in 2002, it is in the OECD report, Giving Knowledge for Free (2007, p. 10), that the definition of OER currently most often used stands as “digitised materials offered freely and openly for educators, students and self-learners to use and reuse for teaching, learning and research”. This is the definition that will be adopted in this paper, although in the context of being aware of a wider interpretation. // Currently, many universities around the globe have launched OER projects (more than 300 universities). Millions of learners have benefited from learning through OER materials, and many educational institutions, mostly distance education providers, have obtained significant rewards in terms of enhancing their reputations, increasing student enrolment and developing innovative ways to produce distance learning materials (Wiley & Gurrell 2009). Also, OERs have contributed significantly to the proliferation of virtual communities of learning, where students, teachers and experts in their fields can discuss, make contributions and learn with each other through online collaboration (D'Antoni 2008). However, we still have much to learn about the OER movement. It is still grappling with issues such as resistance to giving away information and knowledge for “free”; at no cost and free to use and re-use. Licensing, intellectual propriety and copyright of OERs are also matters that remain ambiguous to educational institutions. In a similar fashion, many questions associated with policy development, sustainability and quality of OERs continue to be unanswered and under researched (D'Antoni 2008). In fact, according to UNESCO (D'Antoni 2008, p. 11), the above concerning matters are listed amongst the 14 priority issues that deserve attention for further development of OERs, with “awareness raising and promotion” being the first priority.
- ItemOpen AccessCommunity Schooling: Novel Strategy to Expand Value Education(2010-11) Lenka, Kishore KEducation aims at the all round development of the child to help them grow as able citizens those who understand the purpose of safe guarding natural values, virtues and wise use of the resources to campaign for conservation and preservation to safe guard the ‘Mother Earth’ from manmade coercion. There is a crisis and lapse of critical analysis of ‘values’ in all spheres of life in present day society. Qualities like love, truthfulness, honesty, sincerity, co-operation, tolerance, non-violence, service etc. have almost vanishing as a result there is violence, terrorism, hatred, cruelty etc. are dominating in the whole world. The citizens of tomorrow are mainly the products of the present educational system. This indicates that the present system of education is not enough to produce good human beings. All the educational Commissions and Committees of preparing the National Agenda of the past have recommended stories on Value Education for children from the school stage. But this has not been attempted with spirit to attend success after manifold trials. The reasons are many but one of them is no substantial minimum awareness or knowledge of teachers and parents in this regard on various Value Education methodologies.
- ItemOpen AccessCreating awareness about Urban Planning to the community(2010-11) Baguant-Moonshiram, Y; Nowbuth, Manta D; Gunness, SandhyaOne of the fundamental prerequisites for the achievement of sustainable development and sustainable planning is broad public and specially community participation in decision-making and involvement of all stakeholders specially the social groups and NGO’s. Furthermore, according to Agenda 21, new forms of participation have emerged and these include the need of individuals, groups and organisations to participate in decisions particularly those which potentially affect the communities in which they live and work. Individuals, groups and organisations should have access to information relevant to urban planning and development held by national authorities, including information on products and activities that have or are likely to have a significant impact on planning, and information on sustainable development. The government of Mauritius has embarked on a project called the ‘Maurice Ile Durable’ (MID) project which is a long term vision aimed at promoting sustainable development. The main aim of this project is to make Mauritius a role model of sustainable development. One of the key partners of the government in this endeavour is the University of Mauritius as one of the roles of the University is to educate the people about important issues and to encourage community development. As such, the university has to go forward and be a tool in creating awareness among the Mauritian people and to encourage community participation towards achieving sustainable development.
- ItemOpen AccessDeveloping Strategies for successful Science and Technology programmes in Open Universities of Developing countries(2010-11) Rangappa, K S; Narasimharao, B PandurangaAs human civilization progresses from one era to another era the education and its delivery also undergoes changes and transformations as per the experience and needs of the society of that era. The present day system had arisen and developed as per Humboldt's or Newman's vision born of the experience of nineteenth century. Since then there has been revolutionary developments lead by science and technology in all spheres of human life giving rise to a society based on knowledge and knowledge workers which is far more than a social change and considered to create changes in the human condition (Drucker, 1994). As Magrath (2006) says the 21st century University which has great educational and intellectual talents within its faculty and staff is an educational enterprise and must use the educational talents available to serve society. We may say in line with this, there are some important concepts and models evolving to make education nearer to societal needs - university-industry collaboration/cooperation, model 1 & 2 models, triple helix, National innovation systems, regional innovation systems, higher education for sustainable development, consortium & cluster concept, public-private-panchayat partnership, skill development mission, finishing schools, university outreach and engagement, open and distance learning, corporate education, service learning, community learning, scholarship of engagement, centres of excellence and relevance, community colleges etc. // One of the developments which saw large expansion with respect to India is Open University (OU) concept. Though the potential of open distance learning system (ODL) in addressing higher education needs of the society is well argued in the literature, there is still skepticism about the legitimacy of distance education in countries as different as Swaziland, China, Canada and some European countries (Harry & Perraton, 1999). It is not surprising that the ODL system is often considered as 'second chance' and even 'second grade' system in developing countries like India. This may be mainly due to the fact that the system's potential is being focused often providing access to education (making the open distance learning as an alternative system to education) rather than for meeting the needs and demands of knowledge society and knowledge economy (making open distance learning an essential system of education). As Gidley et al (2010) point out access, which is often treated as synonymous with social inclusion, is only the first step in providing higher education. Along with the access, success is an important aspect in social inclusion. The third concept introduced by them, participation is an important factor in knowledge society where knowledge production is socially distributed and subject to multiple accountabilities. All these three concepts (access, participation and success) can be seen to reflect degrees of social inclusion and we need to see that ODL system cover these three concepts to move to the real of knowledge society. Narasimharao and Nair (2010) while discussing universities and corporate education concludes that the 21st century responsibility of universities in developing countries lies in broader involvement of universities with society by developing strategies to integrate the recent trends in higher education to make the universities to link to their space and also to integrate the recent trends in higher education to make the universities to link to their place and also to integrate entrepreneurial and traditional functions needed for the well being of the society. The present paper discusses on developing strategies for successful science and technology (S & T) programmes in open universities of developing countries.
- ItemOpen AccessEmerging Technologies, Established Communities, & Evolving Universities(2010-11) Anchan, John PPost-secondary institutions in Canada and around the world are in a constant state of flux due to changing population demographics and newer technologies. With multifarious demands for corollary revenues and bottom lines, universities are being stretched beyond their limits. Increasingly, the ivory towers have lost their gleam and are under constant pressure to respond to a Net generation demanding employable credentials (Cote & Allahar, 2007). Many of these issues are not recent as we see scholars having raised the alarm bells even in the sixties (Coombs, 1985; Dore, 1997). The emerging technologies have begun to challenge our notion of relevant education in relation to pursuit of knowledge. The influence of technology in the way we learn and interact is undeniable. In the meantime, universities have become isolated islands distanced from their immediate communities. With the seeming disconnect that has plagued higher institutions of learning, traditional universities have begun to revisit the notion of production of knowledge for its own sake. This is especially true in Canada. // This paper explores selected studies within a given theoretical framework involving projects and initiatives at the institutional level. It highlights some of the challenges faced by such emerging technologies along with cultural, political, and economic realities that impinge upon community development.
- ItemOpen AccessExploring the Introduction of Certificate Program in Microfinance through ODL: A Study(2010-11) Chandraiah, EsampallyPoverty poses a major threat to the development, particularly in India. In view of the first Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of reducing extreme poverty and hunger by half by 2015 (IIBF (2009), the microfinance education through open distance learning (ODL) assumes importance in alleviation of poverty. Education is considered to be an effective approach and single powerful weapon against poverty. It widens the financial services delivery system by linking the large number of rural population, particularly people living in Below Poverty Line (BPL), with formal financial institutions through Self-Help Groups. However, there was an absence of microfinance education to explore possibilities of setting up specialized small business activities or social enterprises to develop the rural economy. Therefore, microfinance education and skill-building of rural poor through Open Distance Education and Learning (ODEL) are big challenges to alleviate poverty. // Broadly this paper intends to provide a greater understanding of the role played by microfinance in general and Self-Help Groups in particular in Andhra Pradesh. Further, it intends to analyze the needs assessment of Self-Help Groups (SHGs) to offer a “Certificate / Diploma program in Microfinance” through Open Distance Education and Learning (ODEL) system at Dr.B.R.Ambedkar Open University, India.
- ItemOpen AccessGetting Ready: Using Participatory Communication and Learning to Improve Food Security and Climate Change Adaptation in the Caribbean(2010-11) Protz, Maria PRural communities in many parts of the world face increasing challenges to survive due to pressures caused by climate change and globalization. This is especially true in Small Island Developing states (SIDS) such as those in the Caribbean. Climate Change (CC) is forcing communities to adapt quickly not only for their own survival but also for national food security. // But “getting ready” demands new skills and the adoption of new practices, both of which can involve steep learning curves. // Participatory communication can play an important role in making this learning transition easier, and in fact, without it, adaptation is not likely to be sustainable. // This paper shares how Communication for Development, or ComDev, is working to improve food security and help rural communities adapt to climate change in the Caribbean. Through the “Communication for Sustainable Development Initiative” (CSDI)’s Caribbean programme, communities are using participatory video, ICTs, radio and other community media to establish backyard gardens and organic farms – practices that are not only helping to improve household health and nutrition, but also helping to improve national food security.
- ItemOpen AccessThe importance of community service learning in engineering(2010-11) Nowbuth, Manta D; Gunness, Sandhya; Moonshiram-Baguant, YCommunity service learning (CSL) is gradually shaping up the way of applying the design tools and techniques which students learn during their undergraduate courses in Engineering in Mauritius. A case study was carried out to evaluate the extent to which CSL could be applied in the field assignments so as to help students better understand the practical and social aspects of a problem. The course BEng(Hons) Civil Engineering is of 4 years duration, with 3½ years being full time courses at the University of Mauritius and the remaining half year being spent as industrial training in either a consultancy or a contracting firm. During the time spent at the University, the students are assignments different types of assignments, with the objectives of enabling them to take their own initiatives, to work in teams, to organise themselves as they work in groups and to get better understanding of the social aspects of engineering problems and practical acceptable solutions. However, over the years it was noted that though several of the objectives are actually met successfully, the appreciation of the social aspects was not always successful. Students tend to fail to understand that some practical economical solutions were not always the ones that the society would accept and trust. With a view of remedying this issue, the structure of an assignment was modified. Third year students were given this assignment and were asked to liaise with the public to find the socially acceptable solution.
- ItemOpen AccessIntegrating Community Partnership Perspective in University Functions: A Strategic Approach to Strengthen University-Community Linkage(2010-11) Tripathi, Shiv K; Rathnam, B V; Tripathi, S LLooking into the complexities of the issue, the present paper has been conceptualized around the broader research question of ‘how we can develop sustainable university-community partnership in the university organization?’ In order to address this research issue, the paper aims to accomplish the following research objectives; • To review the selected developments in the theory and practice of university-community partnerships; • To analyze university functions using emerging approaches; • To identify the possible functional areas of university-community partnership; • To suggest a generic model for university-community partnership;and • To analyze the possible application of the approach in open and distance learning systems. // The paper is conceptual in nature and is based on the secondary literature review and experience based observations into higher education management. The insights drawn from the interaction with the different higher education managers during training programmes have also been used in analysis of the issues. The paper aims to suggest a generic framework for developing university-community integration by incorporating the different stakeholder perspective under varying environmental conditions. An attempt has been made to identify and apply the possible application areas in open and distance learning systems. In broader terms, the paper addresses the issue of micro level university organization management and aims to contribute to the knowledge development in the area of ‘strategic higher education management’ in general, and community partnership strategic planning in particular. // The proposed model is based on the tested concepts of the management, applicable across different organizational settings. However, being conceptual in nature, it suffers from the usual weaknesses associated with such frameworks. The framework requires significant improvements based on testing and implementation in the real university management situation.
- ItemOpen AccessKnowing and Growing Network of Organic Women Farmers in the Caribbean: Digital media for learning, networking and farm management(2010-11) Tandon, NidhiWith no explanation for climate change or the abrupt shifts in weather, farmers may think this is ‘God’s work’ - and beyond the control of mere mortals. By extension, farmers might not consider themselves actors of consequence whose actions could have direct impacts for climate change and for our collective futures on this planet. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth! // We have been working with farmers in the Caribbean region since 2004, developing an e-network support system of organic women farmers – first teaching them about the holistic benefits of organic farming (food and health, management of climate change, biodiversity, local production) but also teaching them technical aspects to using the Internet more broadly and social networking tools more specifically over time. In 2010, six workshops later, the network is at least 180 people strong – primarily but not exclusively, women farmers. What began as a network of farmers seeking to become organic has now extended to farmers concerned about a healthy and resilient food economy in the context of climate change and environmental stress. // A review of current research and documentation shows that there are few comprehensive materials that look at women’s use of and access to ICTs in the context of farming and climate change. Our research indicates that despite the lack of dependable data on the impact of climate change on agriculture, the issue is gaining more attention as climate issues attract more urgency. At the same time, it is clear that the treatment of climate change and agriculture needs to be localized in order for it to be of any value to farmers and policy makers alike. // We will present our work, the challenges, and the particular gender dimensions of working with media and technology tools in a rural and multi-island setting – in a participatory workshop session.
- ItemOpen AccessKnowledge Acquisition and Skill Development Issues and Pointers for Future Development of TVET in India in Formal as well as Distance Education Mode(2010-11) Verma, Anand PThe concerns and imperatives of Vocational Education and Training (VET) demand that education should lead to total human development. This includes personal, intellectual, social economic, civic, cultural, ethical and spiritual development. Vocational education is “instruction intended to equip persons for industrial or commercial occupation. It may be obtained either formally in trade schools, technical secondary schools or on the job training programmes or more informally by picking up the necessary skills on the job without actual supervision.” (World Bank) // The world is witnessing an explosion in the field of knowledge, computers , information and communication technology (ICT), which has resulted in the workplace as well as the profile of the worker-now there is a demand for a knowledge worker by the industry. The focus in demand from industry has therefore seen a paradigm shift from that of a person trained in skills/trade to a person who has not only learnt the skills but also the knowledge (theory) component. In the present day scenario of rapidly changing technological world, there is a demand for a knowledge worker who has the capability to understand and appreciate the changes in the workplace as well as retrain himself as per the requirement through short term courses. // In this context, lifelong learning is becoming increasingly focused in order to ensure that students receive skills necessary to be productive knowledge workers in 21st century.
- ItemOpen AccessLifelong Learning for Livelihood Promotion: A Rural Experiment in the Madurai District of Tamil Nadu(2010-11) Amirtham, Thomas; Joseph, John; Kannan, M; Vivek, A; Solairajan, MAgriculture is the primary sector for the Indian economy. It is economically and socially vital for India as it contributes 23 per cent to GDP, feeds a billion people and employs 66 per cent of the workforce. However the status of the vast majority of the farming communities is filled with misery. Illiteracy, socio-economic backwardness, vagaries of monsoon, increasing input costs, lack of timely credit and unfavorable market conditions has deprived them of their livelihood securities. Added to it, arable land is shrinking as urban expansion, Special Economic Zones (SEZ), corporatization of agriculture has gobbled up thousands of acres of farmland and has eroded the livelihood resources of the poor farmers. This unfavorable trend and livelihood threats needs to be halted and efforts must be made to expand farmer’s access to livelihood resources. By enabling farmers to have increased access to resources (physical, natural, human, social and financial) the present situation can be remedied. As Chakraborty, et al., (2009) argued, people should be made responsible for their own development in this process. Sustainable livelihood approach envisaged that people should not merely participate, but be in charge of their own development. Life Long Learning attempts to provide this expanded access to livelihood resources by adopting this livelihood approach.
- ItemOpen AccessLinking corporate to community technology centers(2010-11) Reddy, ManjushreeLearning Links Foundation (LLF), a Delhi based not-for-profit organisation tries to provide a bridge between leading corporate houses and rural community technology centers. Since its inception in 2002, the foundation has successfully linked over 500 community technology centers with various corporate houses. The key strength of the Foundation lies in bringing international experience to solving local issues across geographical boundaries. // The Foundation sees the community technology as a national movement that sprung up around the country based on need and has now coalesced into a unified movement. The Foundation’s Community Development Initiatives cover a broad spectrum of activities across communities- children and professionals, through models that address critical issues affecting quality of life and the future of adolescents, children and adults. The focus is on developing an environment that will address the need continuum across - educational, social, life skills, recreational and workplace readiness for children, adults and communities. The community development initiatives are propagated through a community based environment outside the formal school setting and include learner curriculum and structured training for community centre staff. // Since 2004, the Foundation has been implementing programs for development of technology skills in children from the heart of rural India, extending learning opportunities beyond the classroom. The focus is on developing interest and helping the learners make connections with their own communities through technology driven projects. Over the past three years, the Foundation has trained more than 90,000 learners across 23 States and 4 Union Territories throughout India in partnerships models. // The vision of LLF’s programs is to foster partnerships between underserved communities and students in order to support holistic care. Over the past year, our team has been working to implement this for the several community groups in India and other parts of Asia. At the same time it has created opportunities for students from various disciplines to work and collaborate amongst each other in order to effectively advocate for vulnerable populations. This offers a unique opportunity for students to engage in learning and community education, tenets that help showing innovative pathways to the knowledge society. // We will share some case study based innovative ways of community outreach and development experiences which have been facilitated by LLF having close corporate linkages with some leading corporate houses like Intel, Microsoft, IBM, Dell, etc. We'll also discuss a variety of community technology programs, the many different ways they are funded and the creative ways they reach out to the community.
- ItemOpen AccessMobile Opportunities: Exploring Innovative pathways for Marginalized Communities (A Trinidad and Tobago Perspective)(2010-11) Mallalieu, Kim; Sankarsingh, Candice VThe Mobile Opportunities Research Project is the focal point for conducting studies in pro-poor, mobile application needs assessment, design, development, deployment and evaluation. In this project, Caribbean fisher folk represent the target group for the development and demonstration of local innovative capacity.
- ItemOpen AccessODL Technologies for Lifelong Learning in India: Possibilities and Strategies(2010-11) Misra, Pradeep KThe changing landscape of learning is helping India to emerge as a technology driven knowledge based society and economy. The success of any knowledge based society and economy depends on promoting the acquisition of key competences and broadening opportunities for innovative and more flexible forms of learning for every citizen of the country. The necessity to adjust to the prerequisites of the knowledge based society and economy brought about the need for lifelong learning in India. The XI Plan Guidelines of University Grants Commission, India on Lifelong Learning and extension (UGC 2007) states, “The country’s economic performance depends critically on access to and the adoption of new technology and improving the skills of the labor force. Since 92.4% of India’s workforce is in the unorganized sectors, they need regular upgrading of skills to compete in the globalize economy. Equipping the labor force with relevant skills implies the need for creating a variety of learning and training opportunities.” // Especially within the context of the current knowledge economy, it is of vital importance that the Indian workforce obtains and retains an optimal level of knowledge and skills. The country’s economic performance depends critically on access to and the adoption of new technology and improving the skills of the labor force. Since 92.4% of India’s workforce is in the unorganized sectors, they need regular upgrading of skills to compete in the globalize economy. Equipping the labor force with relevant skills implies the need for creating a variety of learning and training opportunities. One of the ways to obtain this goal is improved and continuing lifelong learning. Lifelong learning is of key importance for individuals of all ages and holds an array of benefits for them and society. It promotes their full economic and societal participation, enables them to be better informed and more active citizens, contributes to their personal well being and fulfillment, supports their creativity and innovation, and increases their efficiency as workers or volunteers.
- ItemOpen AccessOpen Education Resources and Community Development: Exploring New Pathways of Knowledge in the Field of Higher Education in Assam(2010-11) Das, PrasenjitIn this paper, an attempt has been made to establish some points which can be seen to constitute certain integral aspects of teaching-learning in the open and distance mode. These are: 1. Learning in ODL must refer to cultural factors over and above psychological theories of learning. ODL pedagogy needs to be considered as being distinct from older methods relevant to classroom teaching. Thus, resource development must follow certain necessary outlines. 2. The design of study material must contain implicit references to institutional infrastructure. Learning materials constitute only one aspect of what is made available to the learner. For the totality of what goes into the learning environment for the distance learner, other institutional infrastructure like information channels are important aspects of the learning process. 3. OER must be based on the levels and degrees of interaction between teacher and target learner that an institution envisages within a programme of study. The ODL system has to revise the idea of teacher-learner contact through various means. 4. Unless ODL comes to embrace in full the connotations of “openness”, the system will be cost-effective only in the short-term, an unsustainable mopping-up campaign by older universities playing second fiddle to older face-to-face systems of learning.
- ItemOpen AccessPedagogical Designs for Generation of Contents for the Community(2010-11) Saxena, AnuragWhen one talks about growth of technology applications in education, one normally asks a question: we are moving towards what? Probably the appropriate answer is, towards a convergence point of technologies & what is that? The answer is, towards a Virtual Reality i.e. a "virtual classroom" & what is a virtual classroom? The answer is, where the distance between the teacher and the taught is nil. And finally, how one can make the distance nil? The answer is by generating good e-contents and by making them available to all those who wish to learn. E-contents are basically a package that satisfies the conditions like i.e. minimization of the distance, cost effectiveness, user-friendliness and adaptability to local conditions. As per www.answers.com, we can define e-content as follows // E-content: digital content that can be transmitted over a computer network such as the Internet. // Digital content: Products available in digital form. It typically refers to music, information and images that are available for download or distribution on electronic media. // According to Webster dictionary, "pedagogy" refers to the whole context of instruction, learning, and the actual operations involved therein. So our task in this section would be to define how to develop strategies so that the e-content that we offer our students come good with respect to the context of instruction as well as learning. It would also entail the operations i.e. the accessibility, acceptability and user-friendliness of these contents. In this section, we discuss various pedagogies involved in generation of e-content. We have further talked about various types of educational contents that are suitable for treatment as e-content.
- ItemOpen AccessRegional Cooperation among Open Universities: a Case of South Asia(2010-11) Rajesh, MThere is perhaps no region in the world that can boast of an antiquity rivaling that of South Asia. When man in distant reaches of the world was still occupied with concerns of bare survival from Human and Environmental challenges, South Asia was grappling with the issues concerning the mind and the intellect. However, times changed and South Asia that once was testimonial to the towering heights of intellectual achievements became self content and over confident with regards to its own achievements and shut its eyes to the outside world. Exploration of mysteries and travelling to the outside world became uncommon. Considerations related to the differences among humans based on birth became the source discrimination in the attainment of education and cultivation of the faculties of the mind. Thus South Asia that was once the hub of world intellect and production became one of the weakest performers on this front. // Southern Asia is also a region (as we will see shortly) which requires a robust Open Education System in place due to emergent socio-economic realities. The strength and vibrancy of the Open and Distance mode institutions will determine how quickly the region moves out of the specter of backwardness enveloping the region.
- ItemOpen AccessRole of Non-Formal Basic Education in Rural Development in Punjab(2010-11) Malik, Muhammad A; Jumani, Nabi B; Safdar, Muhammad; Ghazi, Shakeel ADue to population explosion and swiftly increasing demand for education even developed countries are unable to overcome the prevailing challenges through formal system of education. Most of the developing countries are in miserable situation regarding level of education and literacy. Attacking poverty has become an international concern for placing in the paradigm of ‘education and learning for sustainable development’ in consideration of the reality that almost half of the world’s population live in poverty. Pakistan is the sixth populous country in the world and unfortunately, more than half of the population is living below the poverty line. Educated and well off urban population lives not so very differently from their counterparts in other countries of similar income range, or even of their counterparts in Western countries. However, the poor and rural inhabitants of Pakistan are being left behind (World Bank, 2002). Due to scarce resources and financial constraints developing countries are unable to cope with the drastic demand for education and consequently non-formal education (NFE) seems blessing to meet this challenge of poverty alleviation.
- ItemOpen AccessThe role of Open and Distance Learning in community development in Malawi(2010-11) Chimpololo, AndrewAccording to the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) 2007 report, deeply entrenched poverty is a major obstacle for development and growth in Malawi where about 8 million people (representing 70 percent of the total population) live below the national poverty line. Illiteracy is attributed as one of the major causes of this desperate situation. Lack of knowledge on the best practices in agriculture, health and sanitation, nutrition and sexuality has resulted into otherwise avoidable problems related to food insecurity at the household level, chronic malnutrition, escalation of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and substandard health livelihood. The enhancement of ODL activities in Malawi could therefore improve standards of living for the rural poor.