Behold! The New Face of Academic Excellence

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The COVID-19 is a wake-up call to those who desire to tap their natural potentials. More than just a wake-up call, it’s a revolution.


Through ERAAfrica, an initiative to foster basic education, vocational and digital skills to speed up personal, career, business, and community development, I decided to start with the digital skills orientation and training suggested with the fact that if we could be able to get across to people in mass with this message and skills, using other programmes to give the under-served and low-income communities a new voice and hope will become a dream come true. Fortunately, as unwanted the COVID-19 pandemic could be, it has called attention to the importance of digitization of our activities most especially learning.

 

The industrial age has faded away, but not without traces. Africa is yet to tap the full potentials of the age but if we have to meet up, we cannot remain in the past, we have to combine industrial and information age knowledge, skills, and resources to speed up our development.

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The industrial age gave academic qualifications priority in both the public and private sectors. With people needed in both industries and government establishment, the call to train them becomes essentials and the need to communicate with one language is also important. Unfortunately, there is more focus on going to school with the priority of gaining employment. Of course, there is enough to go round then, but now that those who need employment is growing astronomically compare to those who are ready to create jobs creating a huge challenge that calls for making available more jobs. That is the birth of information age through digital technology.

 

On major challenges and claims of starting a business during the industrial age are capital much more than the knowledge and skills. With digital technology, starting a global brand required less capital and the knowledge and skills to do so have been brought to our fingertips. I may not analyze this further since it is not the context of this piece.

 

Welcome to the World of Digital Learning

Ever before the challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic, the possibility and affordability of digital learning have never been a major subject of discussion, many stakeholders within the industry still hold on to the opinion that physical is the best way to learn more than the issue of possibility and affordability. Although the adoption is gradually coming up but not majorly in the academic environment most especially basic education, now that the pandemic is threatening our children getting educated, both government and entrepreneurs have come up with diverse digital options to keep our children busy in their learning adventure. It is one thing to think of an alternative, it is another thing to think of the affordability and to make it available on time. That is one advantage of digital technology.

 

This is the beginning of a new era. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, many schools in affluent communities have resumed class, of course, not physically but digitally. Some are somehow halfway there before the challenge while some have to quickly come up with solutions. What makes it a smooth ride for them is because the majorities of parents averagely understand the concept and can afford it. So, what will be the fate of children in under-served and low-income communities?


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Governments also provide solutions for these categories of the people through public schools but the challenges now to make this worthy of the investments includes;

· Parents and students view and understanding of digital learning

· Affordability; Data, power supply, monitoring, etc.

· Required knowledge and skills on the part of teachers and students

 

These same challenges are also applicable to students in private schools plus the ability of the schools' management to make it available.

 

I have in many occasions in my course of encouraging digital skills and digital learning adoption emphasis that if parents can afford television and digital television decoder and subscription, it is better to instead go for a computer system with internet subscription to initiate early adoption of digitalization if we truly care about the future of our children.

 

The majority of people in low-income communities are the generation of those who failed to adopt or unfortunate to afford academic education when it is highly relevant to transform their economic and financial life. While been literate is still as important as ever, been digitally illiterate can render it useless at this age.

 

The world has become a global village, a statement well confirmed by the COVID-19 pandemic. There is one other confirmation of this statement if the present poor and middle class fully adopt digitalization of activities most especially learning, there will be changes in the creation and distribution of wealth. If not, it then means that the rich will continue getting richer and the poor will continue getting poorer.

 

To be continued ….

 

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