The Director-General of Ghana-India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in ICT, Ms Dorothy Gordon has called on authorities of universities and polytechnics in Ghana to begin uploading lecture notes, students research works, project works and relevant academic materials online for mass access and consumption.
Last academic year, University of Ghana failed to admit about 40,000 students due to infrastructural and logistical problems. The situation was the same in other public universities.
Ms Gordon said the phenomenon could be reduced if school authorities began online courses to reach out to a chunk of students in the rural and far places.
She impressed upon the government to start rewarding universities for the number of courses they offered online and the number of students who signed onto those courses.
"This will help unleash the potential of the masses who could not gain admission into the brick and mortar system where students had to physically congregate for teaching and learning activities," she said.
Speaking on the topic: "Open University; Option for Mass Education in Ghana," in a symposium at the on-going 65th Annual New Year Schoo, the ICT expert urged tertiary institutions in the country to adopt the Open University system to mitigate lingering problems confronting the education sector.
She said the system could reduce residential facility difficulties, acute shortage of lecture halls, as well as overcrowding; and ensure guaranteed education for the masses towards transformation of the society for better social and economic lives.
The Chief Information Technology Officer, University of Ghana Computing System, Mr. Lucas Chigabatia, noted that the lack of connectivity, irregular or no power supply, insufficient infrastructure and trained instructors partly accounted for schools to stick to the old ways of delivering instructions.
However, he said, it was time educational institutions moved away from that system and used information and communication technology (ICT); through audio or video conferencing, to reach out to millions of students across the nation and the globe.
The time to use ICT to transform the education sector and to change the national economy into a knowledge-based one for enhanced prosperity and dignified lives is now, he stated.