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  • Benadette Wambui

The Growth of Online Education in Africa

The world is fast paced and it is impossible to stay in just one field and not be compelled to multitask. With such dynamic changes and advancements over the years, one must upgrade themselves. But how long can one remain a student?

Thanks to new age technology, one can easily take up a profession and also pursue their education. With blended learning modules and e-learning options, classrooms have seen a drastic shift in how it operates. Students are now able to study from the comforts of their homes or even while juggling between their work schedules. Gone are the days when time-bound learning existed, and Universities around the world have entirely taken advantage of this.

Online education refers to complete virtual environment learning. Online education plays a significant role in developing the education industry overall in terms of innovation. Platforms that facilitate interactive learning are gaining popularity. Improvements in IT security and the implementation of cloud-based solutions has increased the adoption rate of the online education system. As a result, people can now enjoy a smooth learning experience on a safe and reliable online platform. Advancements in the field of artificial intelligence are expected to boost the growth rate of the online education market further.

Africa is the fastest-growing e-learning market in the world. It is because of the sheer need of the students who want higher education but face difficulties due to lack of access or unable to break away from their work schedule. Fiber optic connectivity has allowed Africa to blossom, and the increased access to the internet has allowed more students to participate, especially those students in cities.

In 2020, the world went through a very difficult time. COVID-19 broke out sending the whole world into a pandemic declared by the World Health Organization (WHO). Due to how easy and fast it was spreading, so many people worked from home and schools closed. People have had to learn how to live with the virus including the education sector.

While countries are at different points in their COVID-19 infection rates, worldwide there are currently more than 1.2 billion children in 186 countries affected by school closures due to the pandemic. With this sudden shift away from the classroom in many parts of the globe, some are wondering whether the adoption of online learning will continue to persist post-pandemic. The pandemic has no particular date for ending so schools are adapting and most have adapted really well.

Most students were able to continue with their education online. Fortunately or unfortunately the pandemic acted as a catalyst to the growth of online education not only in Africa but in the world generally.

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