EXPLORING CAPACITY BUILDING OPPORTUNITIES IN THE OPERATIONS OF OPEN AND DISTANCE LEARNING FOR GLOBAL COMPETITIVENESS IN NIGERIA
Keywords:Capacity building opportunities, Open and Distance-Learning
The changing trend from face-to-face teaching and learning to Open and Distance Learning (ODL) modes in public universities has made it necessary to provide lecturers with capacity building opportunities to garner basic skills for ODL course designs, pedagogy, e-tutoring, examining students in line with the global best practices. The paper explored capacity building opportunities in the operations of ODL for global competitiveness in Nigeria. Two research questions guided the study. The study adopted a descriptive survey design. The sample of the study comprised 120 lecturers drawn by proportionate stratified sampling technique from five out of the 12 dual-mode universities in Nigeria. The instrument for data collection was a 15 item researcher developed questionnaire structured on a 4-point scale of strongly agree, agree, disagree and strongly disagree weighted 4 to 1 respectively. The instrument was pilot tested in one of the dual mode universities and validated through peer review by the researchers. Cronbach Alpha test for internal consistency was used for the reliability of the instrument. SPSS was used to compute and a coefficient index of 0.73 was obtained, thus the instrument was considered reliable. Data collected were analyzed using statistical mean. The findings of the study revealed that there exist knowledge and skill gaps in the operation of ODL programme among lecturers in the dual-mode universities. It is observed that there is limited access to capacity building opportunities in the operations of ODL in the dual-mode universities in Nigeria. Based on the findings, it was recommended that deliberate efforts should be made by university administrators to facilitate continuous capacity building of lecturers in the key areas of ODL operation; providing specific budgetary allocation for training, retraining and exploring capacity building opportunities in local, regional and international workshops.