1 Dr. Rita Bissoonauth Purbhoo Distance Education Policy Presentation Participants Session Chairs Dr Rita Bissoonauth Purbhoo has recently re-joined the Mauritius Institute of Education after being a Senior Policy Officer in the Education Division of the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from 1997-Dec She holds a Ph.D in Education from the University of Quebec in Montreal, Canada and a Masters degree in Biochemistry from the University of Lyon in France. Dr. Godson Gatsha Dr. Godson Gatsha is a citizen of Botswana and is currently, the Director of the Southern African Development Community Centre for Distance Education (SADC-CDE) at the Botswana College of Distance and Open Learning and is also a monitoring and evaluation consultant for Open Channels (UK) s Comic Relief funded San projects on Management and Leadership Programme, Governance, land and livelihoods and Heritage in Botswana. Recently he was a Consultant and Technical Advisor to the SADC Centre of Specialisation for Secondary Education at the Malawi College of Distance Education an African Development Bank funded project initiative. He is a Commonwealth of Learning (COL) appointed External Verifier for Quality Assurance for Higher Education and is currently providing the service at the National University of Lesotho. He has published several peer reviewed journal articles and chapters on open and distance learning and several school text books on Cultural studies and Social Studies for both primary and secondary schools in Botswana. He has presented in several international conferences on ODL and is an advocate for the provision of technical and vocation education through open and distance education mode. Gatsha s academic and professional qualifications include a certificate in education from the University of Zimbabwe, a Bachelor of Arts degree (BA), a Higher Education Diploma (HED), a Bachelor of Education with specialisation in Educational Management (B.Ed.), and a Certificate for Distance Education Practitioners, all from the University of South Africa (UNISA); a Masters Degree in Educational Management (MEd) and Diploma in Accounting and Business Studies (DABS) both from the University of Botswana; a Post Graduate Diploma in Distance Education (PGDDE)& MA in Distance Education from the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU); a Certificate in Gender in Our Everyday lives and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) with specialization in Education Policy Studies from the University of Pretoria. He recently completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Monitoring and Evaluation from the Stellenbosch University and a Monitoring and Evaluation Certificate for Programme Managers from Rhodes University. Gatsha has worked as a teacher and facilitator since 1984 and as a distance education practitioner, manager and researcher amongst the Indigenous San of the Kalahari Desert in Botswana since His research interests are in open and distance learning, educational management, educational policy, vocational and technical education, educational quality assurance, monitoring and evaluation. His current work focus includes open and distance education capacity building in the SADC region, ODL policy formulation and implementation, quality assurance, monitoring and evaluation and capacity building for NGO governance, lands and livelihoods, management and
2 leadership through coaching and mentoring. His work has taken him on several times to twelve SADC Member States, Ghana, Kenya, Senegal, India, Israel and the UK. He has worked very closely with Commonwealth Secretariat (UK) on nomadic education as a consultant facilitator. Dr. Sarojiny Saddul-Hauzaree Sarojiny Saddul-Hauzaree, Ph.D., is an academic staff of the Science Education Department, Mauritius Institute of Education (MIE). MIE is a parastatal organization involved in teacher education, educational research and curriculum development. She completed a M.Sc. (Physics) from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay and on a Fulbright Junior Staff Development Program she pursued a Master s degree (M.Ed.) in science education at the University of Washington, Seattle, USA. In the summer of 2001, she worked as an intern at the World Bank Group, Social and Human Development Network, Washington DC, USA. During the period she worked with the world-renowned Physics Education Group, Department of Physics, University of Washington under the leadership of Prof. Lillian Mc Dermott. She completed a PhD in computational physics at the University of Mauritius and the title of her dissertation was: Numerical Modelling of Combined Refraction-Diffraction of Water Waves based on Krylov Subspace Methods. She has a vast experience in teacher education programmes for science teachers (pre-service, inservice and continuous professional development) at all levels of the education system: pre-primary, primary, vocational and secondary. Her research interests are in science education, physics/astronomy education, teacher education, higher education and she has presented her works in several international conferences and symposia. With a view to promoting scientific literacy, she has an interest in science journalism and has written several articles in local newspapers. Dr Brinda Oogarah-Pratap Presenters Dr Brinda Oogarah-Pratap joined the Mauritius Institute of Education (MIE) in She is currently the Quality Assurance Coordinator at the MIE. She is also the Coordinator for the Educator s Licence programme, the first teacher education programme at the MIE to be offered in a blended mode (face to face and online). She was a member of the Working Group on Distance Education Policy Development and is the MIE Representative of the Distance Education Coordination Committee (DECC), a committee set up by the Tertiary Education Commission Board to coordinate and promote the quality of DE in Mauritius and in the region. Her research interests include online education, teacher education and health education. Mr Rashid Phul Mr Rashid Phul has made his career as Educator / Head of Department in a private secondary school since He made his first step in the tertiary sector in 2006 as principal at YK Business School, a private postsecondary education institution registered under the TEC Act.
3 Dr Santosh Kumar Pudaruth Dr Santosh Kumar Pudaruth is presently the Senior Lecturer & Head, School of Performing Arts. Holder of a PhD in Cultural Policies for the socio-economic development of Mauritius with special reference to the Indian Experience in the areas of Music and Dance; Dr Pudaruth has had a rich academic career in the field of Indian philosophy and Music. Apart from assuming the role of a musician, singer, teacher and lecturer; Dr Pudaruth because of his keen interest in Distance education, was attached to the Indira Gandhi National University, New Delhi and the Educational Media Research Centre (EMRC) of the Central Institute of English & Foreign languages. In his capacity as lecturer, Dr Pudaruth has contributed considerably and actively to the projects undertook by the Distance Education & E-Learning unit of the Mahatma Gandhi Institute. He is also a member of several panels, committees and council. As an expert in his field Dr Pudaruth has participated in and presented papers at International Conferences. Mrs Kistamah Soonita Currently the Director of the Early Childhood Care & Education Authority Mrs Kistamah Soonita concomitantly assumes not only the functions of the Chairperson of the National Library Board of Mauritius, an apex body under the Ministry of Arts and Culture and that of non-executive Director of several Boards, but also work as part time lecturer for Charles Telfair Institute. She acted as Consultant for the Children s Institute University of Cape Town on behalf of SADC on Review of country policies relevant to care and support for Teaching and Learning (CSTL) ; and was the Resource Person for UNESCO IICBA (International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa) for drafting an Indigenous Curriculum (ECD) for Africa. She is actually working towards the Completion of her PhD on Early Childhood Education. Mrs Sandhya Gunness Mrs Sandhya Gunness currently teaches at the University of Mauritius on the BSc & MSc Edtech programmes namely for the Open Educational Resources, Leadership and Technology management; Social Networking; Principles of learning design. Her interests cover Learning Design, Open Educational Practices and Teacher Education. She has coordinated several international collaborative projects with COL, SADC, COMESA and under the EDU-LINK EU-funded projects. An OlNet fellow (Open University UK), she has registered for an EdD at the University of Brighton and is currently conducting research in the area of Open Educational Practices and how these can transform teaching in higher education. Mr Avinash Oojorah Mr Oojorah currently works at the Centre for Open and Distance Learning as a lecturer since July He has under his portfolio the digitisation of primary [Sankoré] and secondary school programmes. He has also been working both as a primary and secondary school educator for a
4 number of years. In 2012, he was invited by UNESCO to showcase the Sankoré project at the World OER Congress in Paris. He has recently, in 2012, co-authored papers in social media and teacher empowerment and techno-pedagogical models. His previous papers were focused on change management and the implementation of technology in education. He is presently a doctoral student at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal. Dr Sushita Gokool-Ramdoo A Fulbrighter and Commonwealth UK Scholar, Dr Sushita Gokool-Ramdoo holds a Professional Doctorate in Education from the University of South Australia (Educational Policy Development and Quality Assurance), an M.Ed (Adult Education) from Penn State University, USA, an M.A (Education and International Development) from the Institute of Education, University of London and a B.A Honors (English) from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University. She has been an Advisor on Environmental Education and Policy Matters to the Minister of Environment and National Development Unit and is currently the Ag. Head of Distance Education and Open Learning at the Mauritius Tertiary Education Commission, Mauritius. She has also contributed to the ADEA as Coordinator of the Working Group on Distance Education and Open Learning (ADEA/WGDEOL). She has also chaired debates leading to the development of the Education Chapter for the Maurice Ile Durable Policy and provides technical expertise on Education for Sustainable Development to the ADEA, UNESCO and UNDP. A Reviewer on the Editorial Committee of the International Review of Research on Open and Distance Learning (IRRODL), Athabasca University, Canada and on the Journal of Online Learning and Teaching (JOLT) her expertise lies in the Systems Approach to Sustainable Educational Policy Development and Quality Assurance. Her research interests are in Education for Sustainable Development, Teacher Education, Environmental Literacy, Health Literacy, Program Planning, Adult Education, Distance Education, Quality Assurance in Education, Gender, International Development, Community-Based Development, and Education for Poverty Reduction. Mr Vivek Gupta Ramnarain Mr Ramnarain is presently working at the Tertiary Education Commission as Quality Assurance and Accreditation Officer. His involvement at the TEC has been mostly in the field of Quality Assurance, Quality Audits, and Accreditation in Higher Education. He has over 18 years experience in the field of management, marketing & customer care through lecturing and on the field exercise. Prior to joining TEC, he was employed at the Open University of Mauritius (Ex-MCA) and has acquired wide experience in coordinating, scripting, presenting, producing and supervising the production of educational video/audio programs for different audiences. He has completed his Master in Business Administration (MBA) with specialisation in Marketing at the University of Poona, India after completing a BSc (Hons) in Chemistry from the University of Delhi, India. At present he is pursuing a Doctor in Business Administration (DBA) from Leeds Metropolitan University, UK. His thesis title is Managing Quality Assurance in Higher Education in Mauritius The Regulatory Process. On a lighter note he is very passionate about sports especially Volley Ball and Cricket. He was
5 actively involved in organising UNIVERSIADE, the inter-tertiary educational institutions sports meet for last two consecutive years. Mrs Rubina D Ramparsad Currently the Officer in Charge of the Centre for Professional Development and Lifelong Learning, University of Mauritius, Mrs Ramparsad also assumes the responsibilities of Instructional Designer at the Centre for Professional Development and Lifelong Learning, University of Mauritius. Dr Nawaz Mohamudally Dr Mohamudally is graduated in telecommunications from the University of Science and Technology of Lille I in France and is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Technology, Mauritius where he had been Head of the School of Software Engineering and Business Informatics and the School of Innovative Technologies and Engineering. He is presently the Chairman of the Internet Management Committee, an advisory unit to the Mauritian government. Mr Mohammad Santally A Mr Mohammad Santally is a senior academic with international experience in e-learning and Open and Online Education and an established international consultant with organisations like SSNED, COL, SADC and COMESA. He has worked on the SIDECAP project, an Edulink-ACP funded initiative in networks with Open University of UK and other Commonwealth Universities such as West Indies, Southern Pacific and the UHI of Scotland on the design and use of open educational resources. He is also involved in the UCSIS (University Consortium for Small Island States) IT committee for a funded project to mount an online Masters in Sustainable Development. He has earned international and national recognition for contribution in the e-learning and educational technology field. In 2006 he received the Outstanding Young Person award of Mauritius by the Junior Chamber International for his contribution to the field of e-learning while in 2009 his project was selected as a finalist for WISE. In 2010, he led the University of Mauritius to receive the prestigious Commonwealth of Learning Award for Excellence in Distance Education materials development. He has spent the past 10 years at the University of Mauritius researching, designing and implementing innovative online academic programs related to teacher education and distance education courses in other fields. Dr (Ms) Manta Devi Nowbuth Dr (Ms) Manta Devi Nowbuth holds a first degree in Civil Engineering, University of Mauritius (UOM) in 1988, a Masters course in Hydrology for Environmental Management at Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, University of London (IC) in 1992, a PhD in modeling of groundwater flow through volcanic medium in 1999 at the UOM and a post doctorate research at the United States Geological Survey Institute in In 2007, she completed her post graduate certificate in Teaching & Learning at the University of Mauritius. She has also acquired training in various fields of water resources through a series of technical short courses in the field of Water resources, Environment, Geographical Information System, Transport and Remote Sensing.
6 Presently, she is the Associate Professor from the Civil Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering and also the current Head of the Civil Engineering department. As her main field of expertise is Water Resources, she lectures and carries out research on a number of subjects; fluid mechanics, water resources, environmental management and geographical information systems. She is currently following a Postgraduate certificate in Teaching and Learning at the University of Mauritius. She even has much experience in the development of distance education materials and use of online learning platforms in the delivery of engineering modules. She has several publications in the field of Education and Engineering and has also been involved in several international collaborative works, namely with the COSTED-India, UNITAR, UNESCO, SA- FRIENDS, IUCN and UNECA organisations. Dr Shaheen Motala-Timol Dr Shaheen Motala-Timol joined the Tertiary Education Commission in 2009 and has since been actively involved in quality assurance of distance education programmes. Dr Timol s interest in distance education lies both from a regulator s point of view and as a learner. She is presently enrolled at the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand on a Certificate in Designing and Facilitating e- learning. Dr Timol holds a Doctor in Philosophy (Polymer Chemistry) from the University of Mauritius and has been engaged in research and quality assurance in Higher Education for the last 13 years. Her research work has been published in international peer-reviewed journals. She has a keen interest in sustainable development in the education sector and as an autonomous practitioner, she was sponsored by the United Nations University Institute of Advanced Studies for a Postgraduate Diploma in Sustainable Development Practices in Public Policy, awarded by TERI University. For the last 3 years, she has been a member of the National Committee of the Mauritius Accreditation Service (MAURITAS) which is the sole national accreditation body responsible for the accreditation of calibration and testing laboratories, under the aegis of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection. Mrs Baguant-Moonshiram Mrs Baguant-Moonshiram has been lecturing at the University of Mauritius since 2000 in the civil engineering department. She has a Master in Town and Country Planning and Sustainable Development from the Universite de Grenoble. Ms Baguant-Moonshiram has been involved in research in urban planning, town planning and in environmental planning. She has also participated in several research projects namely the Maurice Ile Durable Project, Sustainable Consumption and Production in Primary and secondary curriculum, Rio+20. She is also actively involved in mounting up online courses with the help of the VCILT where she has been using the moodle platform. She has mounted several modules which are mostly used in part-time courses as blended mode at the University.
7 Ricaud Gervais Danyel AUCKBUR - Director, E- Education Ministry of Education and Human Resources, Mauritius Mr Auckbur holds a Master of Education (majoring in Physics) and Bachelor of Education (Physics and Chemistry) degrees from University of Marseilles, France. He also holds a Post Graduate Certificate in Education from the Mauritius Institute of Education and an interim diploma from the National Institute of Educational Planning and Administration, New Delhi. Over the years, he has gathered extensive experience in teaching of science at secondary school level and educational management at mid and senior positions within the Ministries of Education and Tertiary Education in Mauritius. This managerial experience at senior level has included working on Strategic plans, draft legislations in Tertiary Education, TVET and E-Education, setting up and merging of institutions and coordination and administration of E-Education, Secondary education, Science Research and Technology at national level. He has also had training experience in various specialty areas of Education such as Knowledge Management, Performance Management, Project Management, Instructional Design, Reform and Management of TVET and Educational Planning and Administration. At the international level, in addition to representing Mauritius on the SADC CDE Board, he has also been the focal point in Mauritius for the COL, and represented the country on the VUSSC Management Committee. He has also had experience with international organizations through activities with the COL, the CONFEMEN, the ADEA, the UNESCO and the AU. He currently is a member of the National Computer Board.