Last updated: 29.03.12

Zimbabwe rolls out e-learning programme

An e-learning system that can be used by both primary and secondary schoolchildren has been launched in Zimbabwe.

Around 100 schools in the country are to participate in the National e-Learning Programme, which has been introduced after the conclusion of the Presidential Computerisation Programme, a drive to encourage computer use at secondary schools across the nation.

Zimbabwean newspaper the Herald reports local communities will be involved in the implementation of the e-learning initiative, which is part of the government's Public Sector Reform and Modernisation scheme.

Announcing the project, President Mugabe said the aim is to make every child in the country computer-literate.

"Encouraged by the Presidential Computerisation Programme, the first successful step of transforming Zimbabwe into an information society, we have now decided to go a gear up and add value to the initial programme by introducing a new dimension to it, this time, in the form of an e-learning programme," he stated.

The programme is also expected to extend to government departments and result in the development of web-applications enabling online registration of students and exam management.

Mr Mugabe added it is time for "all public institutions" to move online in order to boost "efficiency and effectiveness".

E-learning is already in widespread use around the world for education and training purposes thanks to its flexibility and ability to reduce costs for businesses.

The Australian government revealed this week that several different departments will use e-learning for staff training and students in Bangalore, India, are using digital technology to access online learning services to supplement their college studies and enable them to learn without being in a classroom environment.

In the UK, the National Pharmacy Association recently introduced a new online training programme that enables medical students to interact with tutors and course mates online, as well as access source material.