Open, distance education accommodates more learners, say dons
Director, Open and Distance Education, National Universities Commission (NUC) Dr. Olamide Esther Adesina, has advised admission seekers to seek the viable option of open and distance learning as it has the capacity to accommodate more learners.
Adesina gave the advice during the first yearly lecture series of Distance Learning Institute Students’ Association (DLISA), University of Lagos (UNILAG), where she lamented the low carrying capacity in the country’s higher institutions, despite the teeming youths seeking admission.
Speaking on “Open and Distance Education: A panacea in a recessive economy,” Adesina pointed out that DLI is a viable alternative for admission seekers as it helps them to leverage on economy of scale in a confined environment.
She said: “In an institution confined to the four walls, there is a limited number of students that can be absorbed, but through ODL there is no distance in learning. Technology is deployed and it enables the facilitator to reach more people in their different locations. Nigeria has 153 universities but only 33 per cent of those seeking entry into tertiary institutions are able to gain admissions. But with ODL all Nigerians can access tertiary education.”
Assuring that distance education is not in anyway substandard to the conventional education, Adesina said it is delivered in a flexible manner and ensures inclusiveness. “It also allows people access to learning at their convenient time.”
Also, the DLI Director, UNILAG, Prof. Olukayode Amund, said the institution has been at the forefront of providing knowledge through qualitative education in Nigeria and has enhanced the global developmental goals by making learning accessible and available for all in accordance with the university’s 1967 Act as amended.
According to him, open and distance learning facilitates and enhances access to education in particular, through removing two key barriers to learning, which are lack of funds and location.