The use of information technologies to expedite information flow between Open and Distance Learning (ODL) learners and their educational providers
This is a study in the use of information technology, specifically the use of BULK Text messaging (SMS) service as a way of improving and expanding service delivery to the Open and Distance learning (ODL) learner. The paper seeks to explore the degree to which communication with learners by SMS can expand and strengthen learner support services to ODL learners thus reducing isolation and at the same time keeping the learners informed. Expansion of Academic Programmes at Botswana College of Distance and Open Learning has posed various limitations on resources such as inadequacies of space for tutorials, unavailability of tutors at some learning centres, inadequacy of coordinators to run these programmes. This has in turn forced the college to retrospect on its communication methods and move more towards those methods that can reduce the symptoms of isolation from distance learners and one of the methods that the college has recently adopted with success in this area is the SMS. This paper therefore seeks to establish that indeed SMS is one mode of communication that ODL practitioners should consider for their learners as it is an effective way of communication.
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