Mount Kenya University students and staff will now connect to online portals with ease owing to the subsidised connection via Telkom Kenya. This benefit follows the institution and Telkom's launch of mobile data solutions to ease internet access with Telkom's 4G Sim card.
Mr. John Okoth , Head of Enterprise Operations & Programs Telkom (left), Prof. Peter Wanderi Ag. Vice-Chancellor MKU and Dr. Evans Mwiti DVC APIA during launch of sponsored data bundles to boost ODEL programmes
During the launch at MKU Thika (Main) campus, students said better connectivity will solve many problems and improve their learning experience.
The deal is aimed at enhancing data connectivity for the Online and Distance Education Learning (ODEL) students as well as providing better services to staff, subsidised surfing costs, subsidised and even zero-rated distance learning applications.
Challenges for online students include accessing the student portal due to huge traffic by online users trying to access facilities like virtual timetable, student mail and tp submit submission of assignments, an ODEL student says.
"These become more challenging due to the high costs by some internet service providers whose data bundles are very expensive,” he said
“Another challenge is data connectivity in remote places with low data speeds making virtual learning difficult. With improved speeds and connectivity, it will make virtual leaning efficient, convenient and enjoyable," he said.
The data solution will benefit about 20,000 students, including 7,000 ODEL students, 12,000 Distance and Institution Based E-Learning (DIBeL) students and 1,000 instructors. It will eventually benefit the entire 40,000-school fraternity.
Beneficiaries will access as much as 1GB per month that can be allocated daily or monthly. When that's depleted, subscribers can use normal Telkom tariff subscriptions.
The deal comes a few months after the university entered into an agreement with Microsoft to digitise the institution using the Microsoft Education Transformation Framework. It incorporates modern teaching and learning methods and is expected to result in better learning outcomes.
"We believe each individual in society has equal rights to benefit from learning and this can partly be achieved through open online courses,” university founder and chairman Prof. Simon Gicharu said.
Author : Trizza Kimani and R.Wamochie The star