Developed by Education Development Center (EDC) in partnership with Mastercard Foundation, the Building Resilience in TVET Through E-Learning (BRITE) program is one of solutions designed streamline efficiency in the education sector.
The latter was created with the aim of responding to Rwanda’s commitment to integrate technology in education by providing interactive e-learning digital solutions for the TVET system.
The e-learning materials available through the program include a Work Ready Now audio program, trade specific electronic-lessons and electronic-Work Based Learning.
IGIHE has spoken to Education Development Center (EDC) and BRITE Deputy Chief of Party Aimee Senzeyi to tell us more about this program and how it is contributing to the education sector.
IGIHE : What is the BRITE project ? Tell us a bit more about the levels that are covered by the project
Management : BRITE stands for building resilience in TVET through e-learning. It is a two-year Mastercard foundation-funded Project implemented by EDC in partnership with AKA, the Rwanda TVET Board, and Rwanda Polytechnic. Its core activity is to develop e-learning materials for TVET Schools and IPRCs and build the capacity of trainers from those training institutions on blended learning or how to use those materials in class as complements to their current training or teaching methodologies. It has 3 components (1) WRN Audio Program (2) Trade-based e lessons and (3) e-Work Based Learning.
Currently, we are implementing in 3 levels, Level 3 and Level 5 with Rwanda TVET Board in TVET Schools and Level 7 with Rwanda Polytechnic in IPRCs. We focus only on 4 trades (1) Food Processing (2) Animal Health (3) Crop Production (4) Domestic electricity.
After launching the e-learning materials, how have schools (learners and trainers) responded to using them ?
Trainers are currently using the BRITE e-learning materials in schools as training materials and we are receiving constant positive feedback from them. We have put all our trainers on different WhatsApp groups based on their trades to be able to receive prompt feedback but also provide support as needed. Our materials are accessible by trainers through the TVET e-learning platform “Moodle”. We upload our e-lessons on their platform and create group credentials for schools allowing them to access the e-learning materials.
E-learning is fairly new in Rwanda, how are you helping trainers and students to adapt to using the e-learning materials ?
We do that through capacity building. Having access to e-learning materials is one thing and being able to use them is another. To make sure that trainers enrolled in the BRITE Project make use of our e-learning materials in schools we provide training of trainers (ToTs) and constantly check with them through different channels. We also do school visits and do class observations and coaching where needed. Also, our e-learning materials are fashioned in a way that can inform you that materials are being used or not by schools.
How do the schools access these materials ? - online platform/ interactive materials
Through RTB’s and RP’s Moodle platform. We create accounts with usernames and credentials and share them with trainers and train them on how to navigate and access the lessons.
Do you work with all the TVETs ? If no, why ?
So far, we work with 20 TVET Schools, 4 Technical Secondary Schools (TSS), and all the 8 IPRCs. Being a two-year Project, we cannot serve and train all the 400+ TVET schools within that time.
What are the challenges that are currently being faced using these materials (Both by trainers and students) and how do you intend to overcome them ?
The main challenges are connectivity (meaning the internet) ; digital literacy, and technology readiness. Most of the schools do not have enough computers for all students making it a very big challenge to the accessibility of online learning materials.
To mitigate the impact, the project conducted a technology need assessment to be able to identify the need per school in terms of technology and connectivity and advise in collaboration with other Development Partners implementing in the same schools.
How long is the project and what is the way forward after ? How will you ensure sustainability and continuity of the project ?
The Project started in 2020 in October and is ending in September 2022. A lot has been achieved so far, we have developed 30 elessons ; 100+ audios on complementary modules and elessons preparing students for industrial attachment. We have trained a total of 250 trainers on blended learning and have always developed content hand in hand with them before developing electronic lessons.