Why African Innovations? 26th June 2020 While the mortality rate due to the coronavirus is relatively low in sub-Saharan Africa, the education sector of the continent has been heavily affected by Covid-19. Hundreds of millions of children in Africa are currently out of school due to the nation-wide closure introduced by countries. The EdTech Hub felt it was vital to…

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Why Learning Offline? 25th June 2020 This Pitch Day focussed on learning offline something critical in areas with little or no internet connectivity. We were joined by Chris McBurnie from the EdTech Hub whose introduction focused on why initiatives that focus on learning offline are so important in responding to COVID-19. Chris said, “When I speak to people about technology…

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Why Learners with disabilities? 📅 23rd June 2020 We were honoured to be joined by Joshua Josa, head of the USAID’s disability Inclusion portfolio, who framed the challenge for us at the start of the event. More than 93 million children globally have a disability and that number grows to be more than 300 million if we include the youth…

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Call for Ideas in response to Coronavirus In April 2020, The EdTech Hub, mEducation Alliance, and Global Innovation Exchange (GIE) launched a call for tech-focused ideas responding to the learning emergency caused by COVID-19 school closures in low- and middle-income countries. The aim was to accelerate the pace by which promising EdTech ideas could scale in response to the crisis…

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Sierra Leone’s Education Data Hub is designed to make school-level data more useful in decision making. Nine months into its launch, MBSSE and DSTI were keen to understand who was using the Data Hub, the kinds of decisions it informed, and where improvements were needed to ensure that non-technical users, including policymakers, teachers, parents, and students could access and use the data. These are critical questions for MBSSE and DSTI to be asking, not only to inform the continuous development of the Data Hub but to achieve the goal of data actually being used to inform decisions that have an impact on learning outcomes. 

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Last week the EdTech Hub, #NextGenEdu, and Education Development Trust convened experts, policymakers, and implementers to discuss their visions for a reimagined approach to learning in the wake of coronavirus. 

The invited speakers were:

During a lively online discussion, we asked panellists and audience members “What must any government response to reopening schools include?” The answers were enlightening and sparked plenty of debate. 

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Regular readers will know about our Helpdesk, the on-demand support service we provide for FCDO advisers and World Bank staff to help them make evidence-informed decisions.

Since the onset of coronavirus, the Helpdesk team has responded to requests from 15 countries across Africa, Asia, and the Middle East to review and provide input on various COVID-19 response documents. Below we share a list of nine takeaways.

Most of these takeaways came out of the coronavirus-specific context, but they have wider relevance than just pandemic response. They’re good ideas for any education decision-makers to consider, at any time.

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By Louis Major & Gill A. Francis

With schools around the world closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we have been undertaking a series of ‘rapid evidence reviews’ to help education decision-makers respond effectively. These reviews aim to provide evidence-based summaries on specific areas of EdTech. In this post, we look at the role of technology in supporting personalised learning.

What do we mean by personalised learning? 

As with so many concepts in education, there is no universal definition of ‘personalised learning’. In our rapid evidence review we define this as “the ways in which technology enables or supports learning based upon particular characteristics of relevance or importance to learners”.

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We have just produced rapid scans of the EdTech landscape in 11 countries: Ghana, Jordan, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe. The scans are based primarily on desk research and offer a glimpse into the countries’ EdTech ecosystems. They examine enabling factors for EdTech from a holistic systems perspective but are by no means exhaustive. Given how rapidly the use of educational technology is evolving, we expect we’ll be updating these scans periodically.

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