Kenya has seen remarkable growth in education in the last few years. Between 2012 and 2013 student enrollment increased by 20 percent, and the number of college graduates in Kenya is expected to exceed those without any formal education by 2020.
However, university resources aren’t keeping up with the rapid increase in student enrollment. According to Finance Minister Njeru Githae’s 2012 policy budget statement, “The sector’s biggest challenges include inadequate infrastructure and staffing, a slow pace of ICT integration and dealing with accelerated admissions to universities.”
Video on Demand or VOD education in Kenya has yet to blossom, but it has the potential to ease the pressures that Githae mentioned. Africa’s market is perfect for the system’s development and integration into school systems due to the country’s high population and extensive internet penetration.
The system allows students to select and watch video content of their choice via either their televisions or computers. VOD allows teachers to customize and live to stream their own content to give students in remote areas access to the most effective lectures.
When used as a supplement to traditional teaching methods, it reinforces students’ understanding of content. Students have the option to stop or replay parts of lectures as many times as needed, while advanced learners can use the system to explore more material. Students can also use the system to catch up on missed lectures.
VOD education in Kenya could give the country an advantage with Information and Communications Technology (ICT) competitiveness and innovation. The system will familiarize students with technology and prepare them for entrance into a modern workforce that highly values technological literacy.
The system also contributes to student empowerment, active engagement, leadership and collaboration. Educators who use VOD encourage students to collaborate with each other — even peers from other universities — to create their own material.
VOD generates revenue through subscriptions, sponsorship, and advertising models, which could be used to fund education and reduce the cost of tuition. Students can access the system for free with university hotspots.
VOD education thus far has been shown to enhance student performance and academic development. Not only does it have the potential to become a useful enhancement to 21st century teaching methods, but it also is compatible with Kenya’s goal of becoming a globally competitive and prosperous nation.
– Liliana Rehorn