The foundation Vice Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Professor Olugbemiro Jegede and other digital experts have called for the implementation of a national policy on digital learning in Nigeria.
The experts made the call in Abuja on Tuesday, during a two-day workshop on policy initiative for digital learning in Nigerian Universities.
The workshop is organised by the Regional Training and Research Institute for Distance and Open Learning (RETRIDO), NOUN, in collaboration with
CommonWealth of Learning in Vancouver, Canada, and African Centre of Excellence on Technology Enhanced Learning (ACETEL).
Speaking, Jegede said without digital skills no without digital no country can achieve a proficient digital economy.
“All over the world people have embraced technology much more than we think. There is nothing you can do now without technology. Technology has taken over all parts of our system.
“Technology is like our inorganic DNA if you like and so it has become imperative to appreciate the role of technology in teaching and learning so that the next generation will be better placed in appreciating the world and of being trained so that they are better suit for the work force and better entrepreneurs.
“The world is now depending on digital economy so this is what the policy is advocating, that the Universities should appreciate the use of digital learning in today’s world.
“The professors, lecturers can use digital learning for teaching, assessment, exams, interact with students and send their messages across and bring students together for them to have their group discussions.
“Digital literacy is actually saying we should understand how to use all these technologies, how to use them to access information and how to produce information through them.
“All we need is implementation, that is what we need. Once it has been implemented all our children from primary yo tertiary institutions will be digitally literate,” he added.
The director of RETRIDO, NOUN,
Prof Christie Ofulue said the objectives of the workshop is to address issues that would drive distance learning in Nigerian Universities.
“Technology is usually used to bridge that gap. But more importantly, the experience that came from COVID-19 where many institutions that were not prepared technologically.
“So there is need for institutions to look at how they can develop their content, how they can train their teachers, how they can even teach their students as well on how to learn on line and for their lecturers how to teach online. And one of the things that needed to be done is to have a policy guideline.”
The director of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), federal ministry of education, Abubakar Isah, said the ministry is coming up with a policy framework for digital literacy.
“As of today, the ministry has a digital learning website for the entire country that has over 15000 videos covering primary to senior secondary schools. It is available online for free.”