LUANAR Enrolls ODL second cohort

By | January 29, 2017

LUANAR Enrolls ODL second cohort

Acting Vice Chancellor talking to the students

In its pursuit to increase access to University education, LUANAR has selected a second cohort of 392 students into its programmes offered through Open and distance Learning (ODL).

Open and Distance Learning (ODL) at LUANAR is a new mode of delivery of its programmes which removes the barrier of space, distance and time, whereby learners shall be facilitated to embrace self-learning using modules and online resources from anywhere and at any time.

Speaking during the opening of an Orientation Session at NRC Campus on Monday, Acting Vice Chancellor for LUANAR, Professor Emmanuel Kaunda said LUANAR decided to venture into ODL to widen access and allow enrollment for those who would not access higher education in Agriculture and Natural Resources due to limited class and residential space, and time constraints.

“ODL is a flexible and an inclusive education mode that opens up to all those who meet minimum entry criteria as set by LUANAR and the National Council for Higher Education. It is therefore, a more learner centered approach to learning” said Professor Kaunda.

Professor Kaunda urged students to work hard and use this opportunity wisely so that they get the required knowledge and qualifications.

He further assured the students that they are the cream as any other student of LUANAR and that they will get the same qualifications as everyone else.

Complementing the Acting Vice Chancellor, ODL Coordinator, Dr Joshua Valeta said LUANAR through his office is geared to deliver the best and that the students should be assured of acquiring adequate knowledge in their different programmes.

He said as any other student, ODL students are recruited on pre-requisites stipulated for each programme and in line with the university’s admissions criteria while promoting flexibility and inclusiveness. The same curriculum used for face-to-face has also been adopted in ODL.

He said students will be supported by a team of dedicated student support staff through Blantyre and Mzuzu satellite centers, besides the City Campus and the main Bunda Campus.

“We also plan to construct an ODL hub at Bunda Campus, and a multi-story building in Area 47, with support from the World Bank and Malawi Government, which will eventually act as the main as well as the satellite center for Lilongwe,” said Dr Valeta.

The programmes offered under ODL are BSc in Agribusiness Management, BSc in Agricultural Economics, BSc in Extension and BSc in Agricultural Innovations. More programmes will be delivered through ODL in future. In the near future, all levels of qualification, including post-graduate programmes will be offered. Thus LUANAR continues to fulfill the Government’s plans to widen access.

Written By Patricia Nkhoma

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