Welcome to ESUA-CICT project webpage.This project intends to improve efficiency, effectiveness and quality in teaching, learning, research, Outreach and administrative services at Sokoine University of Agriculture through the use of Information and Communications Technologies..
Project Title:Enhancement of Sokoine University of Agriculture’s (SUA) Capacity in Utilizing Information and Communication Technology..
Funded by: USAID
Project Duration: Phase I (November 2014 to 2016)
Developments in ICT have revolutionized the way information is managed and shared across socio-economic sectors throughout the world. Application of ICT in education has been stimulated both by the range of challenges facing education systems and by the potential offered by these technologies. The main challenge in many developing countries is to make higher education widely accessible and cost-effective, while maintaining quality, in the face of growing demand, increased workloads and limited financial resources. In addition, the current knowledge-based economy demands a strong focus on research and development (R&D), which in turn requires reliable access to and sharing of up-to-date information resources among researchers and development stakeholders. In order to respond to these demands, higher education institutions need to realign their practices to the information age standards by adopting ICT to enhance efficiency and effectiveness.
The potential pedagogical and economical forces that drive universities to enhance ICT in teaching, learning, research, outreach and administrative activities include greater access to up-to-date information; interactive teaching and learning environment; synchronous learning; lessening of high workloads; and increased student to teacher ratio. In addition, ICT provide pedagogical improvement through the use of tools such as computer simulation software. ICT can also improve cost-effectiveness through its ability to reach distant students and in greater numbers. Furthermore, the current workplace environment requires graduates to be ICT literate regardless of their fields of study. Generally, ICT provides an array of powerful tools that may help in transforming the present isolated, teacher-centred and text-bound classrooms into rich, student-focused, interactive knowledge environments.
In order to provide quality education and perform research effectively universities require stability in their ICT environment. The ideal ICT requirements of a modern university include efficient and sustainable network infrastructure; sufficient computing facilities and related accessories; reliable broad bandwidth; uninterrupted power supply, data backup-facilities, security facilities; and a recovery centre at a remote location. It is also necessary to automate the core University functions by establishing integrated information systems for teaching and learning; library services; human resources; records management as well as financial and procurement services. In addition, with the increasing demand to employ ICT in all aspects of university activities, it is important to equip staff and students with the right skills and enhance their awareness to manage and utilize these tools.
Therefore, the ESUA-CICT project under the sponsorship of USAID grant aims at improving, among other things, the application of ICT in teaching and research in higher education institutions. This is in line with Corporate Strategic Plan (2011 – 2020) which advocate the use of ICT to increase efficiency, cost effectiveness and competitiveness. The main objective of the project is to intensify the use of ICT in training, research, outreach and administrative functions at SUA through enhanced ICT applications and systems.