16 November 2013

Kenya: Intel Explore and Learn Offers Free Digital Content for Kenyan Education System

Intel Kenya today launched Intel Explore and Learn, a new, free education application that offers parents and their children a one-stop shop for quality digital content developed for the Kenyan education system.

This solution is the result of the collaboration between Intel and Rancard, an African-based mobile technology company that provides a cloud-based software platform for mobile content discovery, delivery and monetization.

The solution, designed for learners of all ages, provides access to wide variety of content including text books, set books, revision books, interactive past exam papers, rich multimedia (audio, video and animations) for Kenyan students from Primary to High School level.

Speaking during the launch in Nairobi, Intel's Middle East and Africa Business Development Director, Cigdem Ertem said, "The aim of the Intel Explore and Learn solution is to provide a resource hub where learners can find relevant content to enrich their studies while at the same time provide publishers with access to a platform that will enable them to easily share their learning content. We would like to call upon all publishers and other content providers to partner with Intel in delivering exciting quality education content to Kenya's children to transform how they study and enable children to create their tomorrow."

The content provided matches the Kenyan education curriculum, ensuring that the material is relevant and accurate while providing a user-friendly, interactive and engaging learning experience to students and teachers.

The introduction of the Intel Explore and Learn platform represents another step in Intel's foray into digital education, with Ertem saying the company is continually looking for ways to partner and collaborate with government, educational institutes and content creators.

"As a company that's been active in the education space for the last 40 years, we are well aware of the challenges that education systems face in Africa. We have therefore decided to take an innovative approach by launching Intel Explore and Learn to support education with the objective of empowering the youth and learners of Africa to create a better tomorrow through technology."

Ertem said Intel Explore and Learn was designed to benefit all stakeholders of the education community, including teachers and parents. "We hope educators will find this app of as much use as the students, and use it to reinforce their teaching. Technology itself will never be the solution; it is just a tool to help teachers empower our students."

Ehizogie Binitie, co-founder and Chief Technology Officer who was also present at the launch, said Rancard was founded with an objective to solve significant problems of scale in Africa using technology. "We recognize education as a major challenge across the continent and believe the platform we have deployed together with Intel for the African market is an important step in solving this challenge, equipping both educators and content creators with the tools they need to create and distribute high quality educational content."

Also present at the launch was the Cabinet Secretary for Ministry of Education, Prof. Jacob Thuranira who was pleased to note that educators will be able to generate their own content and upload it to this application in the future. "Indeed, towards the realization of Vision 2030, the education system will be guided by placing emphasis on new developments and subsequent innovations in science and technology. It is initiatives such as these that promote the socio-economic, technological and industrial skills needed for the country's development."

The Intel Explore and Learn application is available for Intel powered PCs and Tablets running Android, Windows 7 or Windows 8 devices. The Intel Explore and Learn application can be downloaded from www.intel.com/exploreandlearn.

Designed to address a number of challenges facing adoption of digital education, Intel Explore and Learn offers:

· One Stop Shop with relevant education content

Teachers and students no longer need to spend hours searching the internet for relevant digital education content. Intel Explore and Learn offers content in one convenient location www.intel.com/exploreandlearn, saving them time that can be spent focusing on their studies. Intel Explore and Learn has trusted educational content generated by local publishers for the Kenyan education system e.g. KICD, Makini School, Nation Media group, Ekitabu and Msingi Pack. In addition, children have access to global digital education content to broaden their horizons and compliment their learning.

· Offline access to downloaded content

Internet access is only required when downloading content. Once a book, revision paper or video is downloaded to a device, internet connection is not required to access it. This not only means parents have control over internet usage but it also saves them the cost of continuous internet usage.

· Engaging and Exciting content available anywhere anytime

Intel Explore and Learn makes learning more exciting for kids with interactive digital content developed for the 8-4-4 curriculum. They can now easily learn complex topics anywhere anytime, by just carrying their Intel powered tablet or laptop that contains all their books and revision material.

· Parents can conveniently buy only what their children need

Intel Explore and Learn offers content that is broken into topics or chapters. Parents only need to buy what their children need at a time. They can purchase a chapter or just the topic needed through local mobile money payments as well as through internationally accepted credit and debit cards.

The Authoring Tool:

Calling upon all Kenyan publishers and content providers to partner with Intel on this new initiative, Danie Steyn General Manager Intel East Africa said, "The content currently available through Intel Explore and Learn at launch is targeted at upper primary grades and Form 4. Our partners are working hard on developing content for other grades. As additional content is developed and as new content providers and publishers sign up, content for additional grades will be added."

Steyn also recognized the important role the teachers play in creating education content saying, "Intel recognizes that teachers need to be fully involved in content creation. We have therefore created a separate authoring tool specifically for Kenyan teachers to easily convert and upload their existing content such as class notes, quizzes or videos," added Steyn.

Intel plans to roll out training sessions for teachers interested in digitizing their content in conjunction with Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) as well as with Kenya Private School Association (KPSA). For more information on the training, teachers need to contact KICD and KPSA.

Intel's Explore and Learn application is available immediately and can be found at www.intel.com/exploreandlearn

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