An Investigation into Utilizing Current Information Technologies to Provide Engineering Education to Sub-Saharan Africa

Nicholas T. Kirkland, Valentine Vitanov, Dirk Schaefer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)
40 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Engineering education is one of the key factors for the development of any nation. Nowhere is this
more true than in Sub-Saharan Africa, where a dearth of engineers has contributed to the lowest
regional standard of living of anywhere in the world. The need in this region is so vast and
immediate that it could only be met by the use of ICT-based education. This paper presents the
findings of an investigation into the feasibility of providing tertiary level engineering education
through current information and communication technologies in Sub-Saharan Africa. Data
collected include an extensive review of the available literature, contact with current providers of
ICT-based engineering education, and a survey of 250 engineering firms in Sub-Saharan Africa, the
end-users of engineering education in that region. The findings indicate that it is indeed feasible to
deliver tertiary level engineering education to Sub-Saharan Africa, assuming that resources could
be found for course development and to enhance the technological capacity of local institutions.
This paper complements the picture of a `flat world' drawn by Thomas L. Friedman who in his
recent book focused on well-developed countries only.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)345-356
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
Volume24
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Keywords

  • Information Technology
  • Distance Learning
  • Engineering Education
  • Africa

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'An Investigation into Utilizing Current Information Technologies to Provide Engineering Education to Sub-Saharan Africa'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this