18 August: Integration of educational technologies in the TVET Sector

Date and Time: Thursday, 18th August 2022 : 16:00 – 17:00 SAST 

Leading the Session: Esther Gacicio, Edtech Consultant & Co-Founder of eLearning Solutions (eLS) and Gabriel Konayuma, Senior TEVET Officer, Ministry of Technology & Science in Zambia

To join the session please register via Zoom here 

Description of the session:  

In this session we will discuss the emergent issues in the TVET sector, with examples from  Kenya, Zambia and Africa at large.  We will also look at what can be done to make sure that this sector is at the same level as the other areas of education.

One of the lessons learnt from and during the pandemic is that TVET has been left behind in the integration of educational technologies in the Sector.  Could this be because of the design of the lessons and the content or lack of the know how in how to integrate technology?

Presenters Bios:  

Esther Gacicio is an Edtech Consultant & Co-Founder and CEO of eLearning Solutions (eLS) (www.elearningsolutions.co.ke; www.elsat.elearningsolutions.co.ke ), a company leveraging on digital technology to design, deliver and deploy learning and training solutions, across the spectrum; to the youth, institutions and corporates. She consults for the World Bank in the Global EdTech Team (GEAK Unit)  and is an Independent Consultant with Results for Development (R4D) as well as an International consultant alongside Common Sense, eLearning and Training Consultants (Austria). She is a member of Specialist Network of the EDTech Hub, a global non-profit research partnership on technology in education. Esther previously served as a Senior Assistant Director at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) where she oversaw design, development and sourcing of education technologies to enhance quality, access, equity and relevant education among other projects such as the Kenya education Cloud and Elimika program. Esther is currently serving in the Board of Technical and Vocational Education and Training Authority (TVETA). 

Gabriel Konayuma is Senior TEVET Officer, Ministry of Technology & Science in Zambia, the UNESCO-UNEVOC Country Coordinator, an e/Merge Africa Network Country Representative, a Board member of the Network for OER and Multi-modal Self-Directed Learning in Southern Africa and experienced Senior Vocational Education and Training Officer with a demonstrated history of working in the technical education and vocational training sector. He is skilled in Strategic Planning, Public Speaking, Training, Research, and Teaching. He has facilitated online courses for TVET staff in Zambia to build their capacities in technology-enabled learning. He has strong community and social services professional with a Master of Education – MEd focused in ICTs in Education from University of Cape Town.

22 June 2023: Virtual Book Launch – Co-teaching and Co-Research in contexts of inequality: Using networked learning to connect Africa and the world


Date and time: Thursday 22 June 2023, 12:00 Noon -13:30 pm SAST

Session format: Interactive virtual book launch

Session outline:

This virtual book launch will introduce the book, share some of the chapters of the book showcasing collaborations in the context of undergraduate, postgraduate, research and community engagement, and provide space to talk to the authors about their experiences when collaborating with partners from different contexts.

To register directly via Zoom please use this link

About the book:

There has been a recent surge of interest in the concept of co-teaching and co-research across institutions of HE locally and globally, as a response to limited international mobility due to COVID-19. In this book co-teaching and co-research is seen as teaching and research that connects educators and learners across different institutions and different contexts, be it across South Africa, Africa or the world. Our collective experiences have shown that co-teaching and co-research are not easy endeavours, especially when they involve differently positioned and differently resourced contexts, students and academics. While these collaborations are enriching and exciting, they need careful support, preparation and time for sustained relationship building – topics that we find are not necessarily discussed in the literature around co-teaching and co-research. This book is an attempt towards closing this gap in knowledge by providing a range of chapters documenting personal experiences of academics and practitioners engaging in co-teaching and co-research across the African continent and beyond, facilitated by various networked learning tools and technologies. Framed by a spirit of sharing and connection, the book provides insights into the benefits and challenges of such collaborations, affordances of technologies to bridge unequal divides, emerging practices of continental collaboration and beyond. Additionally, the book provides an unusually honest and nuanced view on co-teaching and co-research across contexts of inequalities, foregrounding relationship- and community-building rather than technology and emphasising the importance of sustained connection and reflection in these collaborations. Applying a wide range of critical theoretical frameworks, these evidence-based but also reflective and reflexive contributions are a unique and important reminder that behind and through our screens, we connect as humans who yearn to learn from each other, but also need to learn how to learn from each other, when we do not share the same world views. 

 Download open access PDF here 

About the editors:

Zifikile Phindile Shangase is Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Free State, South Africa. She has over 10 years’ teaching, supervision and research experience in higher education. Technology is her current passion in the form of technology-enhanced learning, including blended learning and multimodal pedagogies that contribute towards innovative and interactive teaching, learning and assessment practices. 

Daniela Gachago is an Associate Professor at the Centre for Innovation in Learning at Teaching at the Centre for Higher Education Development at the University of Cape Town. Her research focuses on academic staff development to transform teaching and learning in higher education, with a particular focus on socially just pedagogies such as digital storytelling. She is also interested in innovative course and curriculum design drawing from co-creative approaches such as design thinking. 

Eunice Ndeto Ivala is an Associate Professor and Director of the Centre for Innovative Educational Technology at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) located in Cape Town, South Africa.  Eunice is passionate about staff development into mainstreaming technology in learning and teaching, and her training philosophy is informed by design-based research, design thinking, participatory methods,  reflective and reflexive pedagogies. Her research focus is on information and communication technology (ICT)– mediated teaching and learning in developing contexts.

21 September 2022: Compassionate Learning Design

Session format: Interactive Session/Webinar

Date and Time: Wednesday, 21st September 2022, 12:00pm – 13:30pm SAST

Leading the Session:

Daniela Gachago is an Associate Professor at Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT) at the University of Cape Town. 

Maha Bali is a Professor of Practice at the American University in Cairo’s Center for Learning and Teaching.

Dr. Nicola Palitt: Coordinates the efforts of the Educational Technology Unit in the Centre for Higher Education Research,Teaching and Learning (CHERTL) at Rhodes University

To join via Zoom please register here

Description of the session:

COVID-19 forced a global emergency pivot to online learning, which has led to an increased demand on both staff and students, with major impact on workloads, research careers, and mental health. Across the globe, academics complain of burn-out, exhaustion, and lack of self-care. This has heightened the concern around the well-being of students and staff (Czerniewicz et al, 2020, Imad, 2021) and has led to an increase in interest in approaches to teaching and learning that recognise the importance of care and compassion, such as humanising pedagogies (Pacanksi-Brock, 2020); pedagogies of equity and care (Bali, 2020) or trauma-informed pedagogies (Imad, 2021).

These frameworks create space to ask important questions on how to respond to the affective dimension of teaching and learning, and learning design, how to care for students and ourselves, how to set boundaries and highlight the importance of relationship- and community building. This workshop will briefly introduce some of these terms and frameworks and then explore what compassion means in our context and practice. This will be a highly interactive workshop.

In this interactive sessions, we share a framework that we co-designed that we have titled Compassionate Learning Design (CLD) and discuss how it evolved and how we are developing it further. Our Learning Design Voices chapter grew out of design considerations we developed for context-sensitive networked professional development (Gachago, Pallitt & Bali, 2020; NLEC et al, 2021) and theories of social justice (Fraser, 2005; Tronto, 2015). We used it as a lens to contrast how we supported educators at our universities to create and facilitate context-sensitive and flexible learning experiences with and for students. In our Toward a Critical Instructional Design chapter we explain designing with empathy to co-designing with compassion and further discuss the intersecting praxis of participation, justice, and care.

We view CLD as a praxis that involves anticipation of learner needs and inequities therein, imagination of potential approaches to address diverse circumstances, and respect for learner agency, starting from responsiveness to learner feedback, and driven by a desire for “parity of participation” (Fraser 2005; Hodgkinson-Williams & Trotter, 2018) wherein all learners, including the most marginalised, are involved in decision-making in their learning experience. 

Recent publications by the presenters:

Gachago, D., Bali, M., & Pallitt, N. 2022. Compassionate Learning Design as a Critical Approach to Instructional Design. In Quinn. J, Burtis, M., Jhangiani, S. & Walji, S. (Eds.) Toward a Critical Instructional Design. Hybrid Pedagogy Inc. https://criticalinstructionaldesign.pressbooks.com/chapter/compassionate-learning-design-as-a-critical-approach-to-instructional-design/ 

Pallitt, N., Bali, M., & Gachago, D. 2022.  Academic Development as Compassionate Learning Design: Cases from South Africa and Egypt. In T. Jaffer, S. Govender & L. Czerniewicz (Eds.), Learning Design Voices. Advance preprint. https://doi.org/10.25375/uct.20028431

Pallitt, N.; Gachago, D. & Bali, M. 2021. No Size Fits All: Design Considerations for Networked Professional Development in Higher Education. Conceptualizing and innovating education and work with networked learning.  Eds. Nina Bonderup Dohn, Stig Børsen Hansen, Jens Jørgen Hansen, Thomas Ryberg and Maarten de Laat. To be published by Springer, NY.

Networked Learning Editorial Collective (NLEC): Gourlay, L.; Rodríguez-Illera, J.L.; Barberà, E.; Bali, M.; Gachago, D.; Pallitt, N.; Jones, C.; Bayne, S.; Børsen Hansen, S.; Hrastinski, S.; Jaldemark, J.; Themelis, C.; Pischetola, M.; Dirckinck-Holmfeld, L.; Matthews, A.; Gulson, K.N.; Lee, K.; Bligh,B.; Thibaut, P.; Vermeulen,M.; Nijland, F.; Vrieling-Teunter, E.; Scott, H.; Thestrup, K.; Gislev, T.; Koole, M.; Cutajar, M.; Tickner, S.; Rothmüller, N.; Bozkurt, A.; Fawns, T.; Ross, J.; Schnaider, K.; Carvalho, L.; Green, J.K.; Hadžijusufovi?, M.; Hayes, S.; Czerniewicz, L. & Knox, J. 2021. Networked Learning in 2021: A Community Definition. Postdigital Science and Education, 3, 326–369 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s42438-021-00222-y

Session Led by

Daniela Gachago is an Associate Professor at Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT) at the University of Cape Town. Her research focuses on academic staff development in the use of emerging technologies to transform teaching and learning in higher education, with a particular focus on socially just pedagogies such as digital storytelling. She is also interested in innovative course and curriculum design drawing from co-creative approaches such as design thinking.

Maha Bali is a Professor of Practice at the American University in Cairo’s Center for Learning and Teaching. She is co-founder of virtuallyconnecting.org (a grassroots movement that challenges academic gatekeeping at conferences) and co-facilitator of Equity Unbound (an equity-focused, open, connected intercultural learning curriculum, which has also branched into academic community activities Continuity with Care, Socially Just Academia, a collaboration with OneHE: Community-building Resources, and a 3-month learning journey, MYFest). She writes and speaks frequently about social justice, critical pedagogy, and open and online education. She blogs regularly at http://blog.mahabali.me and tweets @bali_maha

Dr Nicola Palitt is an Educational Technology Specialist at senior lecturer level in the Centre for Higher Education Research, Teaching and Learning (CHERTL) at Rhodes University in South Africa. Nicola’s research interests include learning design, online professional development and online supervision. She supervises postgraduate students and co-teaches formal courses in Higher Education and co-facilitates professional development opportunities for lecturers in various settings. She received her PhD from the University of Cape Town. Read more about Nicola here  – hyperlink to https://www.ru.ac.za/teachingandlearning/chertl/staff/drnicolapallitt/

Facebook page: 




LinkedIn:     https://www.linkedin.com/in/dgachago/







Resources:  https://criticalinstructionaldesign.pressbooks.com/chapter/compassionate-learning-design-as-a-critical-approach-to-instructional-design/