By Sunday Okobi
Ei Consulting Limited, a United State-based technological firm, which specialises in providing e-learning solution to corporate and educational institutions, has launched its digital learning aid project in Nigeria to meet the growing learning and training requirements in the country.
According to the Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Etinosa Iyare, the software known as 'Moodle' can be downloaded for free on any operating system (OS) on any device to aid students and teachers to meet up with the 21st century standard of learning globally.
Iyare, who addressed journalists in Lagos recently, said the company has provided and supported the model in many universities and corporate bodies in US, United Kingdom, Holland among others, but decided to launch in Nigeria because of the developing nature of the economy where the system would be of importance.
"It will only make sense that we start revisiting the way we run our education system. The old way worked for us up until now, but we are hoping that Ei Consulting can revolutionise this entire process, from paper to digital copy, bringing everybody to the 21st century so that we can transform the learning standards of the country."
Iyare stressed that it is still on the level of underdevelopment that Nigerian education system is still based on paper, biro and pencils, "therefore what we are trying to bring about is a change in this digital age, a change that the learning industry needs to be at par with its counterparts in other parts of the world."
On how the system works, he explained that the solution to educational problems share the same core features and functionalities to facilitate dynamic student-teacher learning environment across the world.
He said the company provides services to school curricular management working in conjunction with its faculty or organisational structure to create reusable digital classroom complete with learning activities like "syllabus, weekly readings assignment CBT/examination, setting up scoring and grading rubrics, competency tracking learning plans, automatic certificate generation among others.
"We provide support with integrated e-textbooks, LTIs, and third party internet tools with our product. We also provide a cloud environment to ensure 99.9 per cent uptime and reduce the burden placed on institutions to manage backups, disaster recovery power shortage, among others.
"Ei Consulting provide numerous training exercise throughout the semester to ensure that not only is the institution adopting and using the product, but also make sure the students are utilising and benefiting from the plethora of digital learning aids available. The company supports students, clients and parents via phone, email, ticket and in person on a limited basis."
He explained that the benefits of e-learning system is enormous, adding that not only does it introduce students to the usage of technology in the classroom, the average student should be able to use a computer and the various packages in the system to enhance academic excellence as opposed to using paper and pencils only.
"If we are still sticking to our old ways of teaching our children, then we are doing them disservice. As far as the benefits are there, we make them more involved in using technology. The internet can be used for more research purposes, as opposed to social media alone.
"This module looks at how much you want to invest in the future of your children. For instance a number of institutions technically charge students per semester 28,000 internet services, but most of these students do not use the internet services. So how is too much to secure a child's future? Therefore, we are giving out the product for free. And if we start using the internet for academic purposes our students will become productive comparable to other students around the world. It is not worthy that we provide free services, we charge for support fee." "Currently, we have about 400 universities using this platform. We have a community of developers which supports this platform as well. Many technology institutions have started hosting the programme using their locally made platform after seeing how beneficial it is to their project."