Higher education in the digital age: What do African societies expect today?
In the knowledge society, higher education and research are universally considered to be investments that determine the future of societies and the individuals within them. However the means available are limited and therefore it is important to choose the investments according to the expectations of the various stakeholders. Are the MOOCs likely to promote an evolution of higher education in order to answer all their needs?UNESCO, following the World Conferences on Higher Education that it held in 1998 and in 2009, has decided to prolong them with a symposium to debate about the place and the impact of the MOOCs in higher education.
This new conference is organized by the French National Commission for UNESCO in partnership with UNESCO.
The symposium will be devoted to a deep reflection on the role of the MOOCs in higher education and their impact on the several aspects of higher education in Africa.
To provide appropriate infrastructures is the necessary starting point. The second stage is to train the actors able to insure their best use possible: engineers, scientists, but also specialists in the human and social sciences to accompany the social dimension of that evolution. Here, the question rises of how to master the “brain drain” and “brain gain”, of the importance of diasporas and of a better insertion of Africans into the international scientific and academic communities. Finally a massive use of MOOCs has infallibly an impact on the governance of higher education institutions, the definition of governing bodies and the management of human resources… Such will be the great subjects discussed before giving the floor to ministers, to policy makers in charge of implementing the various decisions in order to make the best use possible of the MOOCs to answer the expectations of students and of society at large.