Two academic staff from the Department of Open and Distance Learning travelled to the University of Sunshine Coast (USC) Australia in July for a five week fellowship to broaden their expertise in policy and curriculum development of e-learning practices. Chair DODL, Dr Paul Muyinda and Mr.Godfrey Mayende joined Dr. Jude Lubega (COCIS) and eight education experts from Uganda in the AusAID-funded leadership program run by USC’s International Projects Group. It has been an amazing and insightful experience to complete this fellowship”, Dr. Muyinda said. “I’ve met so many people, interacted with various technologies and seen a high standard of initiatives that we can bring back home.
Some of the highlights include a leadership retreat with high level staff at USC, the USC Postgraduate Research Conference, virtual visits through webinars (seminars via the web), a visit to a local primary school and the final presentation we delivered to USC staff and students,” he said. The team was treated to the Australian farm experience where they observed a sheep shearing display (removal of wool). They also enjoyed the beach culture through water safety training by a local Surf Life Saving Club.
Here, the team watched a life saving display and successfully performed a mock ocean rescue that included a rescue helicopter. The team captured the hearts of Australians and was featured in the local media (Sunshine Coast Daily newspaper and Channel 7 television). Upon their return to Uganda, the participants will lead policy development and implementation of eLearning practices for tertiary institutions and primary school teachers across Uganda. USC Associate Professor Kathy Lynch, who heads the program, will return to Uganda in October to support the team.
By Sheila Mwebaze Tindi