The Perception of Students About the Cost of Studying by Open and Distance Learning: Case of the University of Goroka

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Otto, Martin
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Commonwealth of Learning (COL) and Open University Malaysia (OUM)

The paper will present an aspect of a research done in Papua New Guinea. The study focused on the “Cost of studying by distance mode – Students Perspective”. The main attention is culture as a pivotal aspect to everyday decision making in Melanesia. The study ascertained that social elements in Melanesia are driving the way of life in general. It therefore defines how people behave and respond to certain issues. // In Melanesia scarcity of financial resources does not necessarily mean the absence of money. What it means is when priorities collide; family and cultural obligation take the upper hand leaving not enough to pursue ODL study. In Papua New Guinea the social pressures and cultural connections and values continue to influence pathways and decisions among cultural and tribal members. Therefore, for an ODL student to make the choice to pay for his or her fees means he or she has to sacrifice his or her social obligation, which is unpopular. It does not even help when financial resources are not made available to ODL students in terms of scholarship and tertiary loan scheme. Thus, the bulk of the population who wish to study by the ODL mode continue to miss out expanding the gap between the high and low class in the income earning graph. ODL providers again are not helping since the delivery mode is being seen as an entity to generate the ever declining government annual subsidy. The data was collected from semi-structured questions among the University of Goroka distance learning students. // Paper ID 106

Open and Distance Learning (ODL),Costs and Financing,Higher Education
Papua New Guinea