Narrative Summary

Nigeria faces several issues that have made the attainment of impactful formal education difficult in recent times. Among the many problems supplanting the government's efforts at making education accessible, affordable, and of world-class quality are the following factors:

  • Management of teaching and learning in environments prone to natural disaster and insecurity.
  • Low proficiency rate in technology propelled teaching and learning activities.
  • High cost of the extant mode of formal education delivery in the country.
  • Poor international rating (visibility and attractiveness) of the nation's education deliverables.
  • Interest in online games and social media at the detriment of academic engagements.
  • The proliferation of fake education certificates.
  • Employers lack confidence in the nation's teacher training institution's products.
  • Bottle-neck bureaucracy in educational administration.

The issues listed above are recently compounded by the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and different shades of insecurity in the country, such as kidnapping and banditry. Attempt to resolve these issues has necessitated a consideration of options to the conventional face-to-face classroom engagement in the teaching/learning process. Nevertheless, the extent to which Nigerians are prepared for the new norm varies. However, a common need in most Nigerian public schools is technology-enhanced learning.

The convergence of new technologies such as ICT, artificial intelligence, and robotics in enhancing knowledge for transforming economies and significantly increasing the pace of change worldwide is undisputable. The need for technology-enhanced learning to meet the various challenges identified as clogs in the wheel of educational development in the country cannot be overemphasised. Hence, the Federal Government of Nigeria did not underestimate the role that Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) can play in transforming businesses and governmental functions and efficiency through synthesised educational technology and formal education. The government envisioned ICT to be paramount to the future of education and meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (Federal Ministry of Education, 2019:1). The prospective impact of ICT on education is expected in increased access through distance learning, knowledge network for learners, training teachers and trainers, broadening the availability of quality education materials, and enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of educational administration and policy (Federal Ministry of Education, 2019:2).

However, Nigeria still faces critical digital development challenges. The Nigerian Communications Commission reported that the ICT sector in Nigeria recorded growth in various subdivisions of its operations since the 1992 liberalisation; nevertheless, much is yet to be attained. The report indicates that the country has only 54,000 kilometres of backbone and middle-mile fibre deployed with significant duplication, and 2G, 3G, and 4G deployed to 89%, 75% and 45%, respectively (Nigerian Communications Commission, 2021).

The National Communications Commission official website displayed a total record of 305,381,440 connected lines; with 102.40% teledensity, 304,048,720 connected mobile lines, 218,354 fixed wired/wireless lines, and 1,114,366 Voice-over-Internet protocol (VoIP), as at December 2021, (Nigerian Communications Commission, 2022). The statistics indicate high technology rating and potential for an impactful educational technology on education in Nigeria by Nigerians. These indicators are promising for a technology-enhanced learning program despite predictable technology and mobile-based challenges like cyber security.

The choice of Technology Enhanced Learning for the TETFund Centre of Excellence at Federal College of Education, Zaria, is informed by the myriad prospects of addressing Nigeria's and the continent's downside at integrating technology with education. The initiative will facilitate a quadruple helix impact on academic, government, industry, and society. It thus promises economic growth and transformation via technology enhanced education to catch up with the rest of the world. The potential and opportunity to utilise digital technologies to catalyse teacher education also align with the vision of such a Centre.

The College and the vision of TETFund

The Federal College of Education Zaria's Centre of Excellence is among the twelve TETFund Centre of Excellence inaugurated on the 24th November 2021. Its establishment is to bring to bear TETFund's paradigm shift from the traditional publication-oriented emphasis of project funding to focus on human resource development in the Tertiary Education Institutions (TEIs) system. In tandem with the mandate of Nigeria Colleges of Education to produce well-motivated teachers of world-class quality through high personal and professional discipline, integrity, and competence for the expanding basic education sector, the Federal College of Education, Zaria, focuses on the impactful application of Information and Communication Technology resources for pedagogical development.

The College was formerly known as Advance Teachers' College (ATC) Zaria, in the North Central State of Kaduna, Nigeria. The College has gone through many adjustments in nomenclature to meet various realities in her transitions. Nevertheless, the objective of the College to provide professionally qualified non-graduate teachers who will serve at the basic and junior secondary school levels of the country's education sector has remained constant. The College has focused on its mandate on pedagogy and education policy review on education. It has achieved an impactful milestone in developing teacher education and training of teachers.

This choice of a Centre of Excellence for Educational Technology & Enhanced Learning (TeCETEL) by the College is informed by the new realities in academia and the wider socio-economic society. The changing roles of teachers in and outside the classroom and the need for commensurate new skills for the emerging hybrid learning systems warrant the imperativeness of innovation and adaptive technology for pedagogy. The College envisaged a Centre that would become a potent medium for capacity building, technological advancement, improved organisational capacity, and an institutional hub for research in the North-West geo-political zone of the country and beyond.

The College is blessed with seasoned researchers with experience in national and international collaborative research capacity. It is expected that quality training and impactful research to solve pedagogy and educational administration challenges shall be achieved on the platform of TeCETEL.

TeCETEL Milestone

The TETFund Centre of Excellence was inaugurated in TETFund Headquarters on the 24th November 2021. The project was launched in the College, Federal College of Education, Zaria on to unveil its activities.

Philosophy

The Philosophy of TeCETEL is to avail digital literacy affordable to everyone who seeks such knowledge and enhance the quality of teacher education through quality research, policy review efforts, and affordable technology for teaching and learning.

Vision

To remain a pacesetter in technology-enhanced learning.

Mission

Our mission is to create a model of education technology that eliminates barriers in providing quality education and effective educational administration.

Guiding Policies, Rules and Regulations

Our Tetfund Centre of Excellence for Technology Enhanced Learning (TeCETEL) is guided by the rules and regulations of the Tetfund Strategic Framework and Establishment Guidelines for Tetfund Centres of Excellence. The policies, rules and regulations revolve around the TETFund Objectives for its Centres of Excellence to

  • Meet Labour market demands for skills within specific areas where skill shortages affect development outcomes and economic growth.
  • Increase knowledge and technology absorption in Tertiary Education Institutions (TEIs) for a knowledge-based economy.

Digital Policies, pedagogical/teaching approaches

TeCETEL shall abide by the federal government digital policy regulation for the safe use of digital technologies.

TeCETEL seeks to achieve its objective of connecting a quadruple-helix developmental indicator of academics, government, industry, and society through the application of technology to teacher education. The Centre shall develop digital policies and performance-based programs for safe adaptation of technology to teacher education within the Act establishing the Colleges of Education in Nigeria. Therefore, the Centre prioritises pedagogy and would focus much of its programs on the correlation of knowledge, attitude, and skills in a blended learning approach. The use of technology shall be deployed in collaborative and Integrative online learning in both synchronous and asynchronous education contexts. An intermittent conventional face-to-face session may be held when required, especially in administrative issues and hands-on examinations.

Infrastructure

Currently, TeCETEL is established on a dedicated facility and systems that support a sustainable functionality of the targeted objectives of the Centre. The facility serves the immediate College community, and all the components of the Centre’s quadruple-helix tiers of aspirations. The TeCETEL facility is strategically located within Federal College of Education, Zaria, to facilitate unhindered accessibility to its organizational structures and physical facilities needed for the smooth running of the various phases of its operations.

The Centre shall leverage on the internal capacity of existing academic structure in the College, while taking full advantage of partnership with external (local and international) expertise. Consequently, the Centre will identify and engage relevant users, academic partners, policy partners, and partners from industries across the country and internationally. The services of the identified partners shall be deployed towards the attainment of the Centre’s vision and mission in research, innovations, administrative and technical supports, through stakeholder workshops and other media. The Centre shall also leverage on its local and international partnership (in the public-private sector, industry, and institutional partners and networks) to disseminate its research findings, staff/student exchanges, and other products and deliverables.

Partnership/Collaborations

TeCETEL has initiated and has vigorously pursued establishing robust partnerships and international linkages across the globe. The aim is to realise the set objectives of the Centre, especially in working in compliance with world best practices in conducting a Centre of excellence. TeCETEL envisages working in partnership with regional and international partners to attain her objectives, especially in areas that would be otherwise difficult to succeed by herself. Some of the areas include:

  1. Building research capacity.
  2. Design, development and delivery of instructional materials.
  3. Infrastructure.
  4. Quality assurance.
  5. Sharing of experiences on policy issues.
  6. Short training and skills development.
  7. Staff/ students learning/research visits and exchange programmes.
  8. Strengthening partnerships with private sector for demand driven research and uptake.
  9. Students' internships.
  10. Technology/innovation and technical co-operation for the establishment of innovation hubs.

Academic Programmes of the Centre

The TETFund Centre of Excellence for Technology Enhanced Learning (TeCETEL) shall offer programmes in areas designed to correlate technology with teacher education. Relatedly, the Centre shall develop curricula training modules and conduct research focusing on developing ICT tools for enhanced learning. Similarly, the Centre shall run Certificate programs in:

  1. Block Chain
  2. Cloud Computing
  3. Cyber Security
  4. Data analysis
  5. Database management
  6. Digital Literacy
  7. Entrepreneurship
  8. Learning Technology
  9. Multi-media Apps for instruction in teacher education
  10. Programming (Java, C and Python)

The training target of the courses are professional who require retraining, as well as freshers who require the structured course for job enhancement or for compliance to modern trends in educational technology.

Programmes Objectives

The programmes are designed to:

  1. Build capacity in the development of digital solutions to meet human resource needs in the education, industry, and public-private sectors
  2. Apply design and development principles in the construction of software systems (See OPP, DPP and Instructional Design Documents).
  3. Adapt and bring to bear analytical and computational approaches on changing societal and technological challenges
  4. Drive scientific and economic development through technological innovation and entrepreneurship.
  5. Develop capacity to conduct applied research in computational disciplines.

Programme Duration

The short course is intended to run for a minimum of 40 hours and not more than 90 hours.

Learning Techniques

The primary learning technique of the Centre shall be hands-on to ensure competency. Thus, the Centre shall adopt a blended model of teaching and learning that includes 70% of online teaching, 25% of internship and 5% conventional classroom instructor-student contacts. Online contacts shall be through video conferencing technique, instructional videos, in-text questions, virtual presentations, chats, and assignments through synchronous or asynchronous delivery. The latter shall be basically for examinations.

Empowerment

The mandate of the College to develop teacher education and train teachers shall be pushed to the limits of quality and relevance to the educational realities in contemporary world best practice through technology-enhanced procedures. Keeping in mind that the task of developing teacher education and training teachers in the current ominous security situation in Nigeria is arduous, the Centre shall invest in strategic empowerment of personnel in the education sector to meet the Centre' specific objectives. Teachers in training and professionals on the field who are deprived of exercising their profession by the necessity of contemporary security challenges shall be empowered. Similarly, opportunities for nomads and people hindered by natural disasters and other security challenges shall have access to relevant, qualitative, and basic functional education.

Quality Assurance

TeCETEL aims at the attainment of quality service delivery. The confidence of the academics, government, industries, and society is paramount to the Centre, and thus the need to ensure quality assurance. The Centre shall work closely with National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) guidelines for critical assessment procedures for constant evaluation and review of its course design, development and delivery process. In line with TETFund guidelines, internal quality assurance mechanism shall be integrated with the NCCE quality assurance measures in the operational assessment of the Centre's governance, staffing, admission, course design and development, assessment and evaluation, academic planning, and learner support. Other accreditation requirements for affiliated programs shall guide the quality of deliverables of the Centre.

Staffing

TeCETEL is domiciled in Federal College of Education, Zaria. The College is a teacher training institution with assortment of highly skilled, and well-trained staff in the Centre’s focus areas. Since TeCETEL aims at a learner-driven, self-learning programs with student-centred approach, expertise in teacher education with skill proficiency in education instructional technology is apt. Thus, the Centre shall leverage on the existing academically, and professionally qualified staff in the College for training in the various programs of the Centre.

The Centre has established a lite governance structure comprising the management, technical, and Learner Support Services tiers.

Governance Structures

Tetfund Centre of Excellence for Technology Enhanced Learning (TeCETEL) is domiciled in Federal College of Education, Zaria, Kaduna State, and runs a Performance-Control Model governance structure. We aim at consistent lightweight governance that isolates educational and policy difficulties in the country, assigns the issues for conceptualisation and solution-driven development, and measures performance for progressive alignments. The Centre's Management Team is drawn from the host College, which includes: The Provost, TeCETEL Director, three (3) Academic Technical Officers, one (1) Communication and Documentation Officer, an Administrative Officer, and a Financial Officer. The management team will be supported by a Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) drawn from the experienced and committed academic staff of the College. Committees and sub-committees are expected to be co-opted from the relevant College community whenever such services are required.

TeCETEL's teams' responsibilities are structured for performance suitability as follows:

  1. The management team shall,
    1. be responsible for the overall coordination of the different project components (research, academic and capacity building),
    2. Engage partners and stakeholders for recommendation to the Chief Executive for approval and further engagement.
    3. meet monthly to ensure that the objectives of projects are accomplished within budget and schedule.
  2. The technical advisory committee shall regularly
    1. review and advise the management team through the Director on the research and training priorities of the Centres.
    2. propose and recommend suitable plans for sustainable projects for the Centre.
    3. plan activities for project implementation, and prepare annual work plans.
    4. recommend partners (sectoral and institutional) and other relevant stakeholders for the Centre's projects.
  3. TeCETEL Research Cluster Management committee shall comprise nominees by the Director of the Centre. The committee shall
    1. examine research proposals for relevance, adequacy, and viability in areas identified by the technical advisory committee.
    2. Manage the technical, scientific, and reporting aspects of specific research projects and report
    3. report directly to the Director and meet from time to time as the need arises.
  4. There shall be three (3) Boards for the Centre: The Academic Board, Sectoral Advisory Board, and the International Advisory Board.
    1. Academic Board: The TeCETEL academic board shall
      1. comprise the Director, Head of Technical committee, Communication and Documentation Officer, Head of Research cluster committee, head of partnering departments, TeCETEL Administrative Officer, TeCETEL Financial Officer, Projects and Programme Coordinators in the Centre. The Secretary shall be the Administrative Team Leader.
      2. The Board shall meet at least once in an academic session. All academic matters shall be addressed at the academic board and results. The graduation list shall be approved at the Board and forwarded to the College's Academic Board for approval.
    2. Sectoral Advisory Board shall
      1. The TeCETEL Sectoral Advisory Board shall comprise of partners from Industries and Industrial and sectoral partners (TeCETEL is considering partnering with MTN, Globacom Nigeria, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC), and Technomedia Solutions Ltd.
      2. Collaborate with industrial and sectoral partners in the development and sharing of instructional materials, building research capacities, technology/innovation and technical cooperation, infrastructure, training and skills development, quality assurance, students' internships and exchange programmes, and sharing of experiences on policy issues.
      3. The Sectoral Advisory Board shall meet two times a year.
    3. International Advisory Board
      1. The Board shall consist of ten members, six of which shall be from the international community (TeCETEL has initiated a conversation with personnel from Syracuse University, NY; Elms College, Chikopee, MA, USA; Stockton University, PA, USA; Elms College, Chikpee, MA, USA; Universiti Sains, Malaysia; University of Virginia, USA; Duquesne University, PA. USA ) and four from within Nigeria (TeCETEL has commenced conversation with Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife; and intend to initiate the same with Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria; University of Ilorin; and National Open University, Abuja).
      2. The IAB shall be chaired by the Provost of the College, and deputised by the Director, while the Administrative Officer of the Centre shall serve as the Secretary. The Board shall meet bi-annually (one on-site meeting per year when feasible, while other meetings will be virtual).
      3. The IAB shall review and advise the Centre on its research, training and development activities. The Board shall facilitate support for conferences/ workshops, student exchange, internship programmes and access to software resources, software development, project management and the use of ICT programmes.
  5. The Centre shall have an independent feedback/complaint handling mechanism where complaints will be made and responded to. An online platform is envisaged to demonstrate transparency, and assure compliance with world best practices.

Centre Director

  1. Keeps the TCoE and all its related processes running smoothly
  2. Distributes duties and responsibilities to project team members
  3. Coordinates TCoE activities, resources, and equipment, as well as tracks progress and effectiveness of the entire project
  4. Coordinates monitoring activities and other fiduciary responsibilities, and
  5. Communicate with counterparts involved in the TCoE.

Project Management Team (PMT)

  1. Planning and coordinating review meetings and activities of the TCoE project
  2. Managing the project administration, preparing reports & presentations; providing management information accordingly
  3. Developing methodologies for planning and implementation of projects activities
  4. Tracking progress against the project plan and allocated budget
  5. Developing project concept notes and terms of reference for project activities
  6. Developing project annual work plan/annual procurement plan by the T CoEs and collating work and procurement plans of all the TCoEs for submission to TETFund
  7. Drawing-up budget estimates for line activities in the planning instruments and other TCoE activities, and
  8. Participating in meetings to share perspectives and work collaboratively to achieve the Project Management team's planned objectives and outcomes.

Communication Officer

  1. Serves as the Secretariat's rapporteurs at TCoE Workshops
  2. Designs and manages TCoE website
  3. Upload news, announcements, events and images.
  4. Covers events of the TCoE to draft reports and/or stories.
  5. Drafts Communiqué from workshops organised by the TCoE
  6. Serves as a staff writer for the TCoE Project's Newsletter, and
  7. Drafts minutes of meetings of the TCoE.

Finance and Accounts Officer

  1. Superintends over the Finance and Accounts team
  2. Monitors the progress of the TCoE project finances and ensure that financial reports are generated as at when due
  3. Assigns task to finance team members and ensure their productivity and effectiveness
  4. Carries out any other assignments assigned by the Project Coordinator
  5. Maintains/Reconciles TCoE (Secretariat) Naira/Dollar/ A/C Cash books
  6. Prepares Statement of Expenditure
  7. Submits withdrawal application
  8. Prepares Interim Financial Report
  9. Oversees Remita Payments
  10. Prepares CBN Mandates/other documents for the TCoE
  11. Processes payments vouchers for the TCoE
  12. Prepares Interim Financial Report (IFR)
  13. Prepares Statement of Expenditure (SOE)
  14. Manages the TCoE store and storekeeping
  15. Maintains Assets Register
  16. Files documents/ Payment Vouchers
  17. Processes outflow and inflow payment reports, and
  18. Carries out other functions as may be assigned by the Centre Leader

Procurement Officer

  1. Supervises and coordinates procurement activities of the TCoE and procurement committee members
  2. Coordinates Bid Opening (Financial and Technical Bids) for the TCoE and participate in the bid opening exercise for the TCoE
  3. Represents the TCoE on external assignments about Procurement issues and the entrenchment of Due Process mechanism at the TCoE
  4. Prepares Pre-qualification and Bid Evaluation Reports on procurement on major procurement
  5. Carries out appropriate market surveys for requests made
  6. Aggregates procurement requirements to obtain economy of scale
  7. Monitors compliance with Tenders procedures within the TCoE
  8. Follows-up on "Certificate of No Objection" with the BPP for the TCoE where necessary
  9. Ensures compliance with the specification of goods, works and services Supplied or rendered, and
  10. Ensures that the TCoE complies with extant procurement rules.

Auditor

  1. Prepares auditing of payment vouchers by carrying out detailed checks of all processes leading to payment and ensuring their completeness
  2. Carries out Expenditure Verification/Certification
  3. Carries out Price verification to make appropriate recommendations on requests and proposals for procurement purposes while also enforcing the due process principle of transparency and value for money
  4. Ensures physical inspection of goods and services to ensure strict adherence to quality and specification
  5. Ensures complete and continues verification of assets, stock records and carrying out bi-annual stocktaking; as well as safeguarding the assets of the" ITOE
  6. Conducts periodic checks on the operations and books of accounts of the TCoE to ensure adequate and accurate financial records are maintained for all transactions
  7. Ensures strict adherence to quality, quantity and specification are met in all transactions
  8. Ensures that Payee Tax, Value Added Tax and Withholding Tax guidelines are followed, and deductions are remitted to the appropriate agencies of the government, and
  9. Prepares and submits the TCoE Internal Audit reports.

Monitoring and Evaluation Officer

  1. Ensures smooth flow of communication on project monitoring and reporting requirements
  2. Oversees monitoring and evaluation activities related to the monitoring of inputs and activities as well as monitoring progress towards results, ensuring that data collection is focused on a core set of key indicators as per the Results Framework
  3. Develops logistics plan and schedule with performance monitoring matrixes
  4. Outlines the matrixes for monitoring and evaluation activities including data to be collected, when, how, and by whom and reporting mechanisms to feed into the progress reports and/or annual reviews
  5. Ensures that data collected is gender-inclusive and reports include consideration of how equity is being addressed
  6. Monitors progress towards achievement of results
  7. Reviews drafts of the progress reports to ensure that they follow the agreed report template and guidelines set down and advise on strengthening of reports
  8. Compiles monitoring and evaluation reports in a format acceptable to TETFund and for review and analysis by the National Project Coordinator and the Regional Facilitation Unit, and
  9. Develops and assists with the dissemination of the achievements of the TCoE in user-friendly formats to relevant stakeholders.

Safeguard Officer

  1. Describes TCoEs including location and distance for material sourcing, especially aggregates, water, stones, etc.
  2. Ensures that TCoEs comply with national & local legislation & permits that apply to the project activity
  3. Ensures that TCoEs comply with all relevant Government policies
  4. Ensures that public consultation process takes place (where applicable)
  5. Compiles capacity building needs of the TCoEs with emphasis on environmental safeguards are identified, and that the necessary capacity building programs are designed and implemented
  6. Ensures that the potential issues involved in the following activities of the TCoE are identified:
    • New construction
    • Rehabilitation of existing buildings
    • Management of solid, liquid and gaseous wastes
    • Hazardous or toxic materials
    • Health and occupational safety
    • Protection of forest lands and wild life, etc.
  7. Ensures that the impact of all site activities are identified and appropriate mitigation measures put in place, including:
    • Notification and worker safety
    • Air and water quality
    • Noise Waste management (including toxic waste) Cultural heritage Land acquisition Protection of forests, wetlands and protected areas Disposal of medical and infrastructural wastes.

Center’s Director

  • Dr Ilesanmi Ajibola

Technical Officers

  • Mustapha Mohammed Yusuf
  • Dr Ahmad Zubairu
  • Dr Ramatu Nuru Asabe

Administrative Officer

  • Barrister Mohammad Saminu Abubakar

Communication and Documentation Officer

  • Dr Salmanu Yahuza

Finance officer

  • Mohammed Kabiru

Technical Advisory Committee

  • Yusuf Yakubu
  • Abubakar Sadiq Ibrahim
  • Ashiru Mohammed Adamu
  • Anas Ibrahim
  • Mohammed Hamisu Isah

Other Officers and in the service of TeCETEL

  • Deputy centre director
  • Academic coordinator
  • Research coordinator
  • Industrial liaison officer
  • Monitoring and evaluation officer
  • Research team leader I
  • Research team leader II
  • Procurement officer
  • Auditor
  • Environmental safeguard
  • ICT officer
  • Quality assurance officer