Caption: Workshop participants in Goroka
The University of Goroka last week hosted a workshop with Flexible Open and Distance Education (FODE) to discuss a partnership with UOG's School of Distance and Flexible Learning (DFL).
FODE will form the basis of support for new programme - Bachelor of Education in School Management at UOG - starting in semester two of this year.
The roles, responsibilities and functions of the entities involved were part of the workshop along with critical components for the delivery and support of learning materials to distance learners.
Topics such as learner support functions, tasks and the perceptions of distance learning were also covered.
A mission statement was also developed at the workshop based on in-service teacher education through the partnership with FODE.
Ouka Lavaki (ML), assistant secretary National Capital District for general education services, was present at the workshop and fully supported UOG’s move to offer in-service teacher education via DFL.
Mr Lavaki said the programme at UOG was “a way forward for many teachers out there who wish to upgrade by bringing services to their doorstep”.
The workshop was also attended by Eileen Lala, academic registrar from FODE and provincial co-ordinators from Eastern Highlands Joe Sogone, Western Highlands Robert Alua and Oro Cecilia Gangai.
FODE distance learning centres will be utilised as support centres for the DFL program.
Demas Tongogo, principal of FODE, said he was happy to be “party to the work UOG is doing to upgrade teachers and to directly contribute”.
Visiting specialist in distance learning ProfTony Wrightson commented “it was not an easy task to begin nurturing this ‘baby’ at a single mode institution like UOG… but this kind of innovation is about access and giving opportunities to those who could never have tertiary education before”.
Prof Wrightson said that UOG staff and their goodwill towards DFL had been of a high standard, and that it made sense for UOG and FODE to march together to achieve their goal.
A memorandum of agreeement (MOA) document is planned to be signed between UOG and FODE later this year.
UOG is fully committed to DFL and has provided funding and new staff positions to assist with the running of the new course.