Six African countries have joined the growing number of African Virtual University (AVU) Member States, confirming that AVU offers an alternative solution to access to quality higher education on the continent.
The countries which ratified the AVU Charter to become Member States include: Benin, Ghana, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Niger, and South Sudan. Sovereign states in the African Continent may become Member States by signing the AVU’s Charter.
The signing of AVU charters demonstrates commitment from African governments to work with AVU to promote use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in Education on the continent. “This is a testimony that AVU is now the leading ICT in education institution in Africa,” the AVU Rector Dr. Bakary Diallo said.
The AVU recently signed an MOU with the African Union Commission to promote education and the innovative use of ICT in Africa through eLearning programs with focus on teacher education, content development, infrastructure, quality assurance, open education resources, capacity building and networking.
AVU Member States have increased from 5 in 2010 to 14 in 2012. Other countries that have singed the AVU Charter are Kenya, Senegal, Mauritania, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Tanzania, Mozambique, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. AVU is established as a diplomatic mission in Kenya and Senegal where it has its offices.
Prof. Rogerio Uthui, the Chairman of AVU Board of Directors and the AVU Rector, Dr. Bakary Diallo, received signed Charters from the five countries on July 12th 2012 during the AVU Multinational Project II Policy Harmonization and Curriculum Conceptualization Workshop held in Nairobi Kenya.
Five out of the six countries are part of the 21 African countries currently benefitting from the AVU Multinational Support Project II funded by the African Development Bank. The project includes: Establishment and upgrading of Open Distance and eLearning Centers among participating Partner Institutions; gender mainstreaming through awarding scholarships to female students; research and development. It also includes technical assistance to countries and universities, enhancing the use of open educational resources, implementation of the teacher education, computer science and peace and conflict resolution programs as well as AVU Capacity Enhancement Program.
African Virtual University (AVU) is a Pan African Intergovernmental Organization whose aim is to significantly increase access to quality higher education and training through the innovative use of Information and Communication Technologies.
Founded in 1997, AVU has graduated 43,000 students across Africa and established the largest network of Distance and eLearning institutions in over 27 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. AVU works across borders and languages in Anglophone, Francophone and Lusophone Africa.
In 2011 AVU received global recognition for implementation of Phase I of the Multinational Project with an award by the US-based Education-Portal.com for its open Education Resources http://oer.avu.org activities in the category of “Best Emerging OCW Initiative.”
The AVU is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya with a regional office in Dakar, Senegal.
Source: African Virtual University – Press Release – 19 July 2012