Connecting the Dots: Digitizing Teaching and Learning in Rural Schools in Uganda

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Commonwealth of Learning (COL)

In the words of Nelson Mandela, "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." (Mandela, 2014). This holds true for the future generations in our globalised world in this Information Age. As the complexity of economic, social, cultural and environmental issues increases, there is need to address global challenges and their relationship with education. As many researchers, governments and educators around the world have realised, ICT creates many opportunities for teaching and learning in the education system. Learners must be equipped with the right skills, attitudes and values to ensure they embrace global challenges and positively impact on the future. This is only possible if investment is made in the quality of teachers (Hassler, Hennessy, & Hofmann, 2018). According to The Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT, 2019), “Educational technology is the study and ethical practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using and managing appropriate technological processes and resources.” // Uganda has a population of 45.6million people, of whom 202,617 are teachers in both private and government-aided primary schools and 58,100 are secondary school teachers, bringing the total number of teachers in the country to 260,717 as per the 2016 annual census (Uganda Bureau of statistics, 2017). The modern trend in education calls for the teacher to be more of an adviser or coach. This is important because the traditional classroom-based, teacher-centred methods of learning deny learners the opportunities to acquire the skills they need in this Information Age. On the other hand, learner-centred methods create a warm and lively teaching and learning environment which encourages critical thinking, learners’ self-discovery and lifelong learning and do not confine learning to the classroom. Learning becomes an ongoing activity resulting from our daily interactions with others and with the world around us, thus making us lifelong learners.// Paper ID 162

eLearning,Information and Communication Technology (ICT),Rural Communities