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The International Centre for Higher Education Innovation under the auspices of UNESCO-ICHEI and the International Institute of Online Education Nigeria National Centre, have formally launched a project on the digital transformation of education through teaching and learning.
The project launch hosted at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in Kaduna State, was followed by the signing of an agreement called ‘Project on Empowering Institutional Policy Implementation for Digital Teaching and Learning in Nigeria.’
UNESCO-ICHEI and Ahmadu Bello University, signed the agreement at a virtual ceremony held at the Institution, on Wednesday.
The Director, UNESCO-ICHEI, Professor Li Ming, signed for UNESCO-ICHEI, while Vice-Chancellor, Professor Kabiru Bala, signed for the university and IIOE Nigeria National Centre.
The focus of the project, which would be run under the leadership of the Institution’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Administration, Professor Ahmed Ibrahim, would be on the design, development and production of online courses and contents.
The Head of Department, Computer Engineering, Ahmadu Bello University, Professor Muhammed Mu’azu, would serve as the Project Manager.
The agreement was in recognition of the importance of digital teaching and learning in realising quality, equitable and inclusive higher education to the evolving needs of the labour market driven by the widespread use of digital technologies.
Speaking at the project launch meeting held virtually at the Department of Computer Engineering, ABU, the Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Professor Abubakar Rasheed, said that the Federal Government’s unflinching support to the project knew no bound.
The NUC boss, represented by the Deputy Executive Secretary, Dr. Chris Maiyaki, described the occasion as an “exciting moment” for Nigerian education as the global programme would broaden access to higher education in Nigeria.
Rasheed, who congratulated UNESCO-ICHEI, IIOE Nigeria National Centre, and Ahmadu Bello University on the successful launch of the project, also described the team handling the project as formidable.
In his remarks, the vice-chancellor of the university stressed that digital learning today was the way to go in higher institutions.
He said that the IIOE was redesigned as the International Institute of Online Education Nigeria National Centre in April this year.
He also said that as part of its commitment to the project, the University Senate had in January this year approved the new Teaching and Learning Policy, which gave approval for the adoption of online and blended teaching and learning, at all levels in the university.
Bala expressed the university’s immense gratitude to UNESCO-ICHEI and other global partners for all the capacity-building programmes extended to the institution, particularly the Create view Smart Classroom, established at Department of Computer Engineering.
The Director, UNESCO-ICHEI, who thanked the National Universities Commission and Ahmadu Bello University for their commitment to the project, explained that the effort had paid off as the IIOE Nigeria National Centre had now become attractive.
This was according to a statement by the ABU’s Director, Directorate of Public Affairs of the institution, Auwal Umar, obtained by The PUNCH in Kaduna on Wednesday.