Over the last few decades, there have been numerous initiatives that aimed to integrate technology to improve the quality of education and access to better learning materials. These initiatives were driven by the belief that technology can help fill the gaps found in the traditional school systems, and enable teachers to engage students, and to make learning more interactive and collaborative. Technology provided easy and affordable access to information and knowledge, and the proponents of technology-based learning methodologies saw an opportunity to transform schools that were steep in rote-learning and memorization, and create a platform where students explored new areas and experimented with their ideas. In addition to acquiring the technical skills necessary in today’s knowledge-based economy, student are likely to become better at solving problems through research, inquiry and collaboration through the new system of teaching and learning.
The adoption of educational technologies picked up rapidly in the last decade and a half, thanks largely due to decreasing cost of hardware and connectivity, and innovations and advancements in devices, power, portability, and connectivity. However, this trend has not spread as rapidly as envisioned by its early adopters, and there seem to be many hurdles in scaling successful practices. We have witnessed many successful use of technology to improve access to better learning opportunities for students; however, the successes are limited to pockets of schools in various countries. The few attempts to take them in the national scale have not yielded expected results.
Ten years ago, OLE Nepal was established with the goal to work with Nepal’s education system to develop scalable model to integrate technology in classrooms across the country. Through the years, OLE Nepal worked closely with various agencies under the Ministry of Education to implement projects on the use of technology in schools and to learn about the practical challenges in transforming education. The lessons that OLE Nepal and many other groups and organizations have learned in their attempts to integrate technology in the education systems can provide valuable insights into how to scale small successful initiatives to make a larger impact in education.
We invite you to join us in this conference to share ideas and experiences, discuss challenges and obstacles, and explore solutions and ways forward so that we can scale good practices in educational technologies to bring transformative changes in education and improve access to better learning opportunities for children all around the world.