Many universities are finding it harder torecruit and retain staff with doctoratequalification.In view of that, Universities are have been challenged to embrace the use of technology to deliver academic programmes. This would ensure that universities utilize the scarce academic resources that include staff, andensure that access to university education is guaranteed. It is in this context that  the  British  Government  the  through  DFID  initiated  the  Strategic  Partnerships  for  Higher Education  Innovation  and  Reform  (SPHEIR)  to  address  some  of  these  challenges  in  Higher Education (HE) sector.

Consequently,theCommission  for  University  Education  (CUE),  whose  mandate  includes expanding  access  and  equity  in  university  education,  has  continually  forged  strategic  public-private partnerships to create sustainable academic learning atmosphere.

The Commission has been working with global partners, taking into cognizance the importance of linkages and collaborations in the achievement of the set strategic objectives.

In a meeting held on 28thNovember between CUE and British Council team at the commission’s main offices, the Councilgave updates on the projects currently being implemented in the higher education sector with support from United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID).

The Commission and British Council teams when the Council paid a courtesy call to the Commission offices on 28th November 2019.

DFID is a United Kingdom government department responsible for administering overseas aid.The goal of the department is to promote sustainable development and eliminate world poverty.

CUE being a key partner in one of its projects called Partnership for Enhanced and Blended Learning (PEBL), the British Council team was interested in hearing about the progress and whether there were any systemic challenges in its implementation.

PEBL is helping universities across East Africa share valuable teaching resources through the development of quality assured, credit-bearing courses delivered through blended learning.

The team, which comprised Susanna Carmordy, Senior Programme Manager, Strategic Partnerships for Higher Education Innovation and Reform (SPHEIR) and Pauline Gangla, Partnership manager SPHEIR were also keen to get feedback from some of the partners who interact with the Commission from time to time on the said project.

Susanna Carmordy (Left), Senior Programme Manager, Spheir and Pauline Gangla (Spheir Programme Manager) when they paid a courtesy call to the Commission on 28th November 2019.

According to Prof. Jackson Too, the Head of Research Department, CUE, PEBL project continues to play crucial role in enhancing teaching quality and student outcomes, and helps to address the growing shortage of academic staff faced by universities.

Prof. Too spoke on behalf of Commission Secretary/CEO Prof. Mwenda Ntarangwi.

In attendance were also Mr Joseph Musyoki, Senior Assistant Commission Secretary/Head of Institutional Accreditation Department and Reynold Njue, planning officer.

Mr. Musyoki underscored the importance of reviewing the delivery mode of teaching in online and distance learning.

“Even as CUE is going on with revision and validation of the Universities and Standards Regulations (2019), it is also important to look at these areas of e-learning. Students, parents and sponsors should get value for their money,” Mr. Musyoki said.

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