Current Happening at GCTU

Ghana Technology University College host virtual teaching and learning webinar

Professor Isaac Abeku Blankson, a Communication and Education Technologist

The devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to present far-reaching implications in every aspect of our lives. The fact that even some of the world’s most advanced and sustainable economies have been struggling to contain the debilitating nature of the disease bears testament to its overwhelmingly inherent menace. Poignantly, it is safe to say that, long after the virus has been contained, life as we know it will certainly be transformed in a plethora of ways, with individuals, organizations and businesses having to adapt and fundamentally rethink their ways of living and operating.

Without a doubt, education has been impacted in ways that have never before been conceived, with millions of students around the world being forced to stay at home amidst the continued threat of the virus’ exponential spread. To ensure that, as much as possible, the inevitable disruptions to the academic calendar are mitigated and teaching and learning continue, some universities have made the shift to deploy various forms of virtual (remote) teaching and learning as an emergency solution. Undoubtedly, as with any contingency solution, there is a great deal of uncertainty associated with this sudden, yet vital shift. Indeed, the conspicuously ad-hoc nature of the transition from traditional face-to-face to an experimental virtual teaching and learning approach has generated anxiety among policymakers, leadership of universities, students and lecturers alike.

Similar to many parts of the global south, Ghana’s underlying structures, particularly technology infrastructure and connectivity challenges are well documented, making the smooth and easy shift to virtual teaching and learning challenges.

The way forward, as suggested by some experts, is to devise pragmatic approaches that focus on what is accessible, practical and acceptable within the context of students, lecturers and higher education standards.

It is within this context that Ghana Technology University College (GTUC) has sought to take an initiative to examine the intricacies of this topical issue, while at the same time delve deeper into the unique nature of our specific situation. In line with this, GTUC is hosting a team of local and international experts for an online event to discuss and share best practices, as well as provide insights on how key stakeholders can capitalize on virtual teaching and learning as we face one of the world’s most challenging periods in modern times.

The event, which will take place in the form of a Webinar, is titled “From Face to Face (F2F) to Virtual (Remote) Teaching and Learning-Conversation with Experts”, and as alluded to previously, has been conceptualized with an aim to uncover unique, informative insights through the sharing of practices and experiences of educational technologists, institutions, as well as those specific to GTUC. In addition, the Webinar will brainstorm and share pragmatic ways to enhance and sustain virtual (remote) teaching and learning, ideas to guide policymakers, leadership of universities, lecturers and students to successfully navigate through the dynamics of virtual teaching and learning in the immediate wake of COVID-19 and indeed, the foreseeable future.

In particular, the Webinar, which is free for all participants, is targeted at teaching faculty, heads of academic departments, deans, educational technologists, instructional designers, policymakers and administrators involved in teaching and learning support. It will be hosted by the Vice-President of GTUC, Professor Isaac Abeku Blankson, himself a Communication and Education Technologist. An array of invited Ghanaian and international experts will participate as lead discussants.

It is our hope that, through the collaborative efforts of all participants, the potential for a wider discussion will be realized, paving the way toward a seamless transition in these trying times, and, ultimately, ensuring that the education of our future generations is not compromised in any way.