What’s good for the goose is good for the gander: AVU’s ICT Masterplan and its implications for Africa
The promise of ODeL and ICTs’ capacity to effectively and efficiently address the educational challenges facing Africa in terms of access to quality and relevant education could remain wishful thinking if the integration of these two innovative tools into educational processes is not subject to the formulation of conducive policies and systematic planning of their introduction in education systems. The African Virtual University, the premier Pan-African institution in ODeL provision and an enabler organization for many tertiary education institutions on the continent, has developed an ICT Master Plan covering the period 2014-2019 to chart how ICTs can be used in ODeL methodologies and approaches to not only meet its own organizational developmental needs to deliver its mission but also to guide African countries in creating conducive eco-systems for maximizing the impact of information and communication technologies on educational processes and outcomes.
The AVU’s ICT Master Plan focuses on 7 development areas: (i) the formulation of good governance structure and policies; (ii) the provision of ICT infrastructure and services that meet the AVU current and future business needs (iii) the delivery of high‐quality and cost effective ICT infrastructure and services; (iv) the fostering of innovation, best practices, and value for AVU in the use of ICT in teaching, learning, and research across Africa; (v) enforcement of confidence and the security of AVU information; (vi) the openness of access to the AVU infrastructures and services for AVU staff and partners; and (vii) the operation of an end-user centered ICT service model. The figure below depicts the vision; the pillars and foundation that underpin the AVU’s Master Plan can be adapted at both national and institutional levels for governments and universities.