Accelerating Education Initiative Overview
A combination of new technologies, communications infrastructure and free educational information is creating an unprecedented opportunity to accelerate education in developing countries. There are now free eLibraries of educational content available that anyone, anywhere can download onto a computer and share with other digital devices. By combining access to this offline educational content with Internet access, students can communicate with teachers and volunteer coaches in other parts of the world using free video conferencing services like Google Hangout or Skype and email to enable an integrated educational experience.
Our Accelerating Education Initiative helps to seize this opportunity by demonstrating this approach and helping other organizations utilize these new resources. Check out our short video below or in our Video Gallery about how six major trends and resources can be combined to compound each other's effects and accelerate education, while at the same time building goodwill among communities in different parts of the world!
Accelerating Education Initiative Background
In 2013, CharityHelp International's (CHI) partner, Think Renewables' (TR) was developing a model of its Conferencing eStation for the education market and discovered there appeared to be an exponential growth of free educational information that could be included with each eStation at no cost. Therefore, it began to build a master eLibrary of free educational information for this purpose. Then it made copies of this eLibrary available to the students at the Afghan Child Education and Care Organiztion (AFCECO). While developing ways of using this new resource effectively, the management team at TR learned how Professor Sugata Mitra's (Winner of the 2013 TED prize) was using volunteers in the UK to motivate children in India to learn via Skype. After learning more about his appraoch, the management team realized that connecting volunteer coaches via the Internet to students with access to large offline eLibraries had incredible and unprecedented potential to accelerate education around the world. For example, it now seemed possible to cost-effectively combine several resources to facilitate quality education on are very large scale. This discovery motivated a partnership between CHI, TR, and Afghan eMarketing Services (AeMS) to launch the Accelerating Education Initiative (AEI).
The Technology AEI Needs to Succeed
Knowledge Delivery Systems (KDs) are an important part of AEI's mission to increase access to educational opportunities through the low-cost communication technologies and availability of free digital educational content. To meet the needs and resources of individual educational institutions, TR has designed several different systems that give students access to local network content, the Internet, and an eLibrary of offline educational material. These systems are sold and serviced by AeMS.
Bringing it All Together with Remote Coaching
Bringing all of these converging trends together is the support of remote coaches. In many cases, the amount of information availabe through free eLibraries of educational content can be overwhelming for a student to process without the support of a guide to help work through challenging concepts and for encouragement. AEI's goal through its coaching program is to match students to coaches that can inspire students to learn from their available resources and, as Professor Mitra suggests, from each other.
We're excited to have launched an AEI Pilot Program in partnership with the Afghan Child Education and Care Organization (AFCECO) in Afghanistan. However, this is just one step in the direction of realizing the incredible potential of these converging educational resources. AEI builds on existing knowledge of effective educational models to shift paradigms. However, AEI can’t succeed alone. It needs everyone to chip in and work together to exponentially increase access to education around the world.Our strategy to scale up our efforts is to...
- Expand our pilot with the help of educational insitution partnerships.
- Support organizations like World Possible in creating eLibraries of educational content in additional languages.
- Compile and publish resources about how existing educational insitutions around the world can these can use new educational resources to support their work.
- Train computer oriented individuals in developing countries to install and maintain Knowledge Delivery Systems for schools, universities, governments and businesses.
For more information on our pilot project and individual components of AEI, visit the tabs under "Accelerating Education Initiative" at the top of the page. Still have questions? Send us a note via our Contact Us page!
How You Can Help
If you're interested in helping AEI through supporting the purchase of Knowledge Delivery Systems for our partnering educational insitutions, supporting training for program coordinators for each of our partnering educational institutions, and supporting continued work in creating a comprehensive eLibrary of educational content in Dari, Pashto, and Urdu for our programs in Central Asia, you can make a quick donation via PayPal here:You can also make a donation through our online form here . Check out our What You Can Do page for more ways to get involved!
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