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UNN partners US varsity in online teaching training for lecturers

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By Patrick Egwu, Enugu

Forty at the fac­ulty of education, Univer­sity of Nigeria, Nsukka have been trained on how to design and implement ; the type of curricular delivery designed to overcome the barriers of time and space as well as equip students with 21st-century digital skills.

The two-day train-the-trainer workshop was facilitated by a partnership between the univer­sity’s faculty of education and the State University of New York (SUNY) at Oswego, New York, United States of America.

The facilitator, Prof Benjamin Ogwo, who is also the departmen­tal chair, Career and Technical Educator Preparation, SUNY Os­wego, said that the was necessitated by the need to equip the with international best practices in instruc­tional delivery skills.

is the current trend in academics hence the staff of the University of Nigeria cannot afford to be left behind”, Ogwo stated this during the courtesy call to the vice chancellor, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The courtesy call preced­ed the programmes for the workshop.

He noted that the delivery pattern affords academics the flexibility of preparing and virtually delivering their instruction to students in different parts of the world with­out being physically present.

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“The world is increasingly in­terconnected and the University of Nigeria cannot afford the cost of being left out”, Ogwo told the 40 lecturers shortlisted for the hands-on training.

The workforce development expert further advised the train­ees to consider their academic positions as a call to evolving solutions to societal problems and not merely as an opportuni­ty to earn a living or embark on research that may never be read outside the academia. “You should dedicate yourselves to your voca­tion because the society looks up to you for ideas”, he said.

The vice chancellor of the Uni­versity of Nigeria, Prof Benjamin Ozumba, while receiving the SUNY Oswego delegate, said that the training was timely as it came at a time the university had just launched its distance learning programme.

“Every academic needs the delivery skills.” Ozumba, who was repre­sented by his deputy in charge of administration, Prof. Charles Igwe, remarked and also advocat­ed for the participation of veteran lecturers in the workshop.

He commended Prof Ogwo for thinking home, stating that the University of Nigeria was open to expanding its partnership and collaboration with SUNY Oswego in areas that would be mutually beneficial to both universities.

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The dean, faculty of education, Prof Stella Nwizu, under whose initiative the training was organ­ised, said she considered begin­ning academics for the workshop because of their favourable disposition and higher skills level on the use of the internet.

She said that those who par­ticipated in the workshop would help in training other members of the faculty. The dean, whose tenure will expire in few weeks, said the training was her parting gift to the beginning academics in the faculty of education.

The two-day workshop featured topics on asynchro­nous, synchronous and blended instructional delivery; design­ing and development of syllabus and modules and grant writing techniques. Other topics treated included open educa­tion resources (OERs), tips on publication and career advance­ment and productivity skills for 21st-century academics in Nigeria.

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