For several decades, access to high-quality teaching and learning resources remains one of the major challenges facing Nigeria and other Sub-Saharan African universities. Part of this is due to neglect and under-funding from the government. Okuwa and Campbell (2017), noted that under-funding, lack of education quality and, deteriorating teaching and learning infrastructures are some of the problems facing higher educational institutions (HEIs) in Nigeria. Likewise, personal observation and visits to Nigerian university libraries revealed that university libraries in Nigeria lack adequate teaching and learning resources and infrastructures. Ngugi, (2011) argued that HEIs in Africa have had diverse histories and trajectories and have played different roles over time reflecting the colonial, post-colonial and current regional and national agendas. However, the present growing demand for higher and open education is presenting considerable challenges to a system that is struggling to adapt to the demands of growing economies. Open educational resources (OER) are revolutionary technologies of quality educational materials have the potential of bridging some these of gaps and confronting some of these challenges. According to a recent book by Hodgkinson-Williams (2018) tagged “Adoption and impact of OER in the Global South” the author noted that education in the Global South faces several key interrelated challenges, for which open educational resources (OER) are seen to be part of the solution.
Similarly, a recent global report from the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) and UNESCO noted that the most popular benefits of adopting OER reported from the survey of 102 respondents from various countries revealed that OER lowers the cost of learning materials and assists developing countries in accessing quality materials; increase the efficiency and quality of learning resources and education; and reduce costs for students and enhances students’ academic performance and learning outcomes (COL, 2017).
Globally, OER has become a widespread phenomenon and standard practice in many HEIs around the world. However, while many HEIs around the world have embraced and adopted the use of OER to varying degrees to support teaching and learning, awareness and motivation to use OER are still slow in Nigerian and many Sub-Saharan African universities. Unwin et al. (2010) argued that despite the availability of OER, their uptake and reuse in Nigeria and other African countries is very low. However, in 2017, the case for the adoption of OER Policy for Nigeria HEIs was approved by the Nigeria federal government and a validated National OER Policy was distributed at the 2nd World OER Congress in Slovenia. This also led to the birth of a national repository of quality OER for the Nigerian university system also known as the Nigerian University System OER (www.nusoer.org). This session will share and analyse the results of a survey of undergraduates’ experiences such as perception, use, challenges and prospects of OER in Nigerian universities. Preliminary findings and results were not available at the time of the deadline for submission of this proposal.
COL (2017) Open Educational Resources: Global Report 2017 – Retrieved 1 Dec 2018 http://oasis.col.org/handle/11599/2788
Hodgkinson-Williams, C., 2018. Adoption and impact of OER in the Global South.
Ngugi, C.N., 2011. OER in Africa’s higher education institutions. Distance Education, 32(2), pp.277-287.
Okuwa, O.B. and Campbell, O.A., 2017. Financing Higher Education in Nigeria. In Sustainable Transformation in African Higher Education (pp. 159-171). Sense Publishers, Rotterdam.
Unwin, T., Kleessen, B., Hollow, D., Williams, J.B., Oloo, L.M., Alwala, J., Mutimucuio, I., Eduardo, F. and Muianga, X., 2010. Digital learning management systems in Africa: myths and realities. Open Learning: The Journal of Open, Distance and e-Learning, 25(1), pp.5-23.