KENYA – Strathmore University has signed a deal with a Silicon Valley-based education and social venture firm, One University Network (OUN), which will see the institution develop smartphone-based degree and certificate programmes.
The partnership was sealed Wednesday by the Strathmore University deputy vice chancellor George Njenga and OUN chief executive officer Gene Wade.
The agreement seeks to enable students get Strathmore credentials by studying on their smartphones.
Students will earn degrees and certificates in various fields with the help of Strathmore faculty and OUN learning coaches. The programmes will be open to students from all over Africa.
Strathmore is set to start offering the degrees and certificate programmes later in the year.
The institution, however, said Wednesday that details of the smartphone programmes, time table and fees will only be released next month.
“With the introduction of Strathmore Mobile, Strathmore University will bridge Kenya’s higher education gap and deliver on our mission of providing high quality, outcome-driven scholarship.
We are looking forward to working with our partners to vastly increase the accessibility of quality higher education here and abroad,” said Strathmore vice chancellor Prof John Odhiambo.
The US based company launched at the beginning of the year has embarked on an aggressive drive to expand to other markets.
It aims to take advantage of growing demand for university spaces that is not matched by increase in available admission places to spread across the world.
It also aims to bridge the distance challenge by helping students to study at their convenience, from anywhere.
The OUN boss said they were excited to partner with Strathmore to help educate Kenya’s next generation through use of information technology.
“Kenya has been a world leader in mobile adoption and we are confident that through Strathmore Mobile the nation will become a leader in mobile higher education. We are committed to realising this vision together with Strathmore,” he said.
Students will use the Strathmore University app to access the courses.
The set course outline includes videos, readings and interactive exercises. Coaches will help students throughout the course work to be vetted and rated continuously for quality control and to create a talent pool.
Students will, however, be required to sit for a supervised final examination at a secured testing centre.