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Submitted by Julie Tardy on

I have to agree with Helma, the idea of introducing MOOCs in Africa is indeed great for various reasons: people far from universities can still access quality materials, skills development etc.
There is a but, of course, and even several buts.
First of all, there are already Open Universities in Africa that do a great job. They have local centres in major towns and proper e-learning set-ups with tutoring. In Tanzania, OUT has developed many courses online and i met several students that were very happy with it. Then why get Coursera to deal with MOOCs when the collaboration can be local (nothing against Coursera).
Secondly, I've been working as an e-learning training coordinator and instructional designer in Tanzania for the past 18months, and as Helma puts, power cuts are frequent, broadband is at best bad; the major thing is that although i have worked with students that are high-skilled professionals there, apart from IT people, the IT skills are low, just a fact. Owning a computer does not mean one can access a LMS in an efficient way. What may appear to you as logical and easy is all relative.
Now waiting for info about that project, wishing the best!