The Senate has commenced the process of including ICT in the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) mode of teaching with a public hearing on the amendment of the Act establishing the institution.
The Senate Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFund, chaired by Senator Barau Jibrin, organised a public hearing on Monday to amend the National Open University Act, no. 6 of 1983 to provide the inclusion of ICT as another means of providing tuition.
Declaring open the public hearing, the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, said the major thrust of the amendment bill was to amend the existing legislation with a view to including ICT as another means of providing tuition.
Saraki, who was represented by the Senate Chief Whip, Senator Olusola Adeyeye, said the inclusion of ICT was aimed at improving students’ learning and other teaching methods.
In his address, the chairman of the committee said, “As a foremost university that has brought education to the door steps of many individuals and has made learning easier for all, this amendment is apt, timely and in tune with global best practice. It will reposition the university for better service delivery and help in producing quality graduates for the Nigerian society.”
The Vice Chancellor, Professor Abdalla Uba Adamu, said from 1983, when the National Open University was created to 2016, tremendous amount of technical changes have taken place. “Our biggest area of concern is the perception of the public of the university as a correspondence university and also a part-time university. This amendment seeks to replace the usage of correspondence in the Act with Open and Distance Learning (ODL), because in the 80s, nobody knew ODL at that time. “Another key area for the amendment is the name of the university. In the Act, it is only known as the National Open University and there are a number of open universities in the world.
You have an open university in Sudan, South Africa and so on. So we want the amendment to add ‘of Nigeria’,” he said.