e-Learning: A New World of Health Education
AFEW is currently developing an extensive series of e-learning modules and methods that will allow us to expand the reach of our public health education programmes and better equip the frontline response to AIDS in the region. To fully implement this project, we need to raise funding to cover some basic and minimal costs. Please visit our fundraising page to find out more about what how you can contribute to our mission.
Education is crucial to building an adequate response to the rapidly growing HIV epidemic in EECA, not just for frontline medical and social staff, but also for workers in the emerging NGOs that play a significant role in supporting everyone affected by HIV. However, healthcare expenditure remains extremely low in this region and training for staff who provide baseline services suffers most from this lack of investment. Many medical professionals receive a catastrophically low level of tuition on HIV and related issues at medical school, and often no additional training after graduation. The high cost of face-to-face teaching (travel and venue costs, fees for lecturers and trainers, etc.) combined with hectic schedules add further barriers to training and education for those in full-time work. This is where e-learning comes in…
How e-Learning Can Help
By using a variety of informational and communications technologies, learners can study at any time and location with very low overheads. They can also extend communications beyond interaction with course tutors to information exchange with experts in HIV prevention, treatment and care across the world. Learning can be web-based – online conferences, chats, webinars and consultations, or offline – by downloading podcasts, webcasts, talking slides, case studies and tests, etc. Course materials can also be delivered by CD-ROM.
e-Learning also presents some exciting opportunities for individuals to enrich the overall pool of knowledge on HIV/AIDS in ECCA. This means that learners do not simply receive information passively, but can also share their experience and regional know-how with peers and the wider international community.
Accessibility and Flexibility
- More people will be reached by training programmes via web-based courses and participation will not depend on a course being available in their geographical area.
- Learners can study the course at their own pace, at any location and at any time.
- Course content can be tailored to the needs of each student and a wider range of materials will be available online.
- Training scenarios can be viewed repeatedly so that students can refresh their knowledge.
Money and time saved on travel, classrooms and hiring trainers can be directed towards vital services.
Instant and Centralised Updates
- Since all materials are stored in a central location online, it is easier to review and update contents.
- Any updates made to content is immediately available to the learning audience.
Virtual Monitoring and Assessments
- Students and supervisors can track progress and conduct assessments instantly and effectively.
- The timing, frequency and sequence of each student’s learning can be monitored and directed.