UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (UNESCO IITE) took part in the Dialogue on the Integration of ICT in Education and Innovative Practices organized by the UNESCO International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa (UNESCO-IICBA) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on 1–2 October 2018. The event was aimed to discuss the way forward on the integration of ICT in education in Africa and to share various experience with innovative practices in teaching and learning, building on success of the Ministerial Forum on ICT and Education Innovation organized by UNESCO IITE in Moscow, Russia, in April 2018.
The Dialogue seeks to strengthen the existing cooperation between all the involved partners, establish mutual understanding on the way forward with regards to integrating ICT in education and challenges faced when it comes to implementation of different projects. Representatives of the following organizations have participated in the Dialogue:
- UNESCO International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa (UNESCO-IICBA)
- UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (UNESCO IITE)
- UNESCO International Research and Training Centre for Rural Education (UNESCO INRULED)
- University of Lapland, Finland
- Embassy of Finland in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
- Hawassa College of Teacher Education, Ethiopia
- Bahir Dar University, Ethiopia
Each participating organization presented its best practices and innovative ideas in the area of ICT integration in education and teacher development. The participants shared global developments in digital technologies for education, and reflected the particular challenges in parts of Africa, where the shortage and unreliability of electricity and internet connectivity limit the use of ICT, calling for innovative approaches and complex cooperation between different development partners. There was general agreement that digital literacy is fundamentally important for teachers enabling them to fully benefit from ICT in the classroom and to avoid the potential risks of poor ICT use. Digital skills have become essential qualities for the youth to be able to secure employment after their graduation.
Tatiana Murovana, the programme specialist of the Digital Pedagogy and Learning Materials Unit, represented UNESCO IITE at the meeting. In her keynote speech on “Enabling and facilitating the innovative use of ICT in education: IITE’s experience”, Ms. Murovana presented UNESCO IITE’s priorities, key action areas and major programme activities, formulated according to the Institute’s Medium-Term Strategy for 2018–2021. She informed participants on the UNESCO IITE’s activities covering the African countries, including some recent and long-standing projects of that kind. The Institute’s arrangements for the future partnership with private-sector companies to boost ICT use in secondary education in Mauritius, Namibia and Nigeria were presented to the Dialogue participants as well.