Kabale University hosts a meeting on E-Learning for all the Academic Staff
A meeting on e-learning was organized for the Academic Staff ahead of the rolling out of the e-learning program for all students at Kabale University.
According to the Academic Registrar Mr. Narcicir Tibenderana, the Academic Staff meeting organized for all Faculties to give an update on how far they have gone in preparation to start the online teaching for all University Students. While addressing Staff, the Academic Registrar welcomed all the Staff to the meeting and thanked them for having successfully completed the training on e-learning. He further called upon those who may have missed the training to come up and reach the responsible unit and special training be organized for them.
The Academic Registrar Informed Staff that Students training on eLearning had started on 11th November 2020, purely online, and was still ongoing until 24th November 2020. He further said that the next intake will comprise of different categories of students such that students will decide whether they would opt to study at campus or online. All this was possible because the National Council for Higher Education recently accredited Kabale University to start conducting online training of students. He thanked the ICT department led by Mr. Murangira Jones, the Asst. Director of ICT services for the wonderful work they are doing.
Mr. Tibenderana informed Staff that Finalists had reported on the 19th of October 2020 and by 6th November 2020, all students are expected to have submitted their course works. He further said that Exams will begin on the 27th of November to the 8th of December 2020. He wished Staff good deliberations as they prepare to roll out eLearning teaching for all students.
The University Secretary, Mr. Baryantuma Johnson Munono while addressing the Staff, thanked them for the efforts they are putting to protect themselves against the deadly COVID 19 virus and emphasized that all Staff must adhere to the Standard Operating Procedures by the Ministry of Health in order to protect themselves from catching and spreading COVID19 both at the University and outside the University Environment. On Human Resource, He informed Staff that the University Council had opened the window for Staff promotions especially in the Academic Area. Staff who qualify for the promotion and are not yet promoted is because the Unit is still waiting for funds from Central Government. He thanked the Government of the Republic of Uganda for continuity in paying Staff salaries in Institutions of Higher learning which has enabled them to continue offering services.
The Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic Affairs, Prof. Benon Basheka welcomed Staff and said that he was impressed by the turn up despite current challenges of COVID-19. Professor Basheka said that the University is now at the take-off stage therefore more opportunities and there are remarkable changes in the structure of the University and therefore called upon all the Staff on board to use their time profitably.
Professor Basheka informed Staff without PhDs to have a vision of where they are heading to otherwise they will face challenges. He encouraged staff to publish their work and if possible adopt co-authorship especially with people outside the University, however, he cautioned Staff to avoid publishers of journals who ask for money to publish their work.
He informed Staff that the National Council for Higher Education had accredited Kabale University to start teaching online with a score of 94% and this achievement was a result of teamwork.
Following the call by the government for all finalists to report back to the University to complete their final semester, Professor Basheka called upon Staff to prepare and help students who had retakes to complete with others. He called them to organize special exams for students who fall in that category such that they are also cleared with others. He further informed staff that recruitment of new students went on smoothly and 90% of the admitted students applied online, which is an indicator that once online services are fully rolled out, they are easily adapted to.
On new academic programs, the University is planning to roll out new Ph.D. Programs and they are in their final stages, and once accredited by National Council for Higher Education, they will be immediately rolled out in early 2021. Prof. Basheka informed Staff that due to increased student enrolment under the Faculty of Engineering, Technology, Applied Design, and Fine Art, plans to put up new temporary structures are underway to provide extra lecture space to accommodate all the students once students report back to campus. Faculty of Agriculture and Environment Sciences and the Directorate of Post Graduate Training was able to acquire new homes and many more such developments are expected.
Kabale University has entered into a number of Memorandum of Understandings with different Institutions including the most recent ones with the French Embassy and Uganda Industrial Research Institute.
He thanked Prof. Everd Maniple who is the Chairperson of the Kabale University COVID 19 taskforce for the great work he is doing with his team to keep the community safe from COVID-19.
The Deans of Faculties of Arts and Social Sciences, Economics and Management Science, Agriculture and Environment Science, Education, Science, Computing, Library and Information Science, Engineering, Technology, Applied Design, and Fine Art, School of Medicine and Director of Institute of Language Studies made their presentations on their current progress on adopting eLearning practices in their different faculties and also made a number of recommendations to Management in order to effectively roll out the eLearning services at Kabale University.
The presentations ended with the Asst. Director ICT, Mr. Jones Murangira who thanked the Staff for uploading most of their teaching material on the site and called upon all those who may not have done so to follow suit. He informed Staff that a new and high-end server was being procured.
While giving the closing remarks Professor Basheka said that eLearning is currently a global issue and doesn’t apply to Kabale University only therefore a need for all the Staff to adjust in order to accommodate the new system. He thanked and commended all students who are responding positively to the eLearning system.