Bad cellphone coverage across SA warrants investigation

Date:28 April 2020 Author: Adrian Brown

As a result of coronavirus, various industries have moved to online, including national education. Barriers, such as bad cellphone coverage, can cause an unfair disadvantage to some learners. Therefore, universities have called for an investigation into the issue.

Many have claimed that in order for universities nationwide to be sustained, online learning is absolutely necessary. The deputy vice-chancellor of research from the University of KwaZulu-Natal said that while we cannot go without this move, bad reception and a lack of technology literacy may cause a problem and make this type of learning and teaching unfair, reports IOL.

The issue was tackled on a nationwide Zoom workshop titled “Sharing practice to move online with entrepreneurship teaching methods and student experiences”. Approximately 108 members from 17 universities across the country attended.

Some students in rural areas have trouble connecting to a 2G network. While moving online works for the university, the plan doesn’t account for the socio-economic realities of this country. Infrastructure in some areas will benefit some and be extremely disadvantageous for others.

While some universities are calling for innovation in terms of teaching and curriculums and others are providing their students with prepaid data, the issue of municipal infrastructure must be tackled first as no solution will work without it. Thus, the universities have called for a probe into this problem.

 

Image: Unsplash

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