Indonesian Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education launches e-learning system to provide higher learning opportunities
An announcement made by the Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education (RISTEKDIKTI) highlighted its Online Learning System (SPADA) to provide Indonesians access to higher education all over the country.
The RISTEKDIKTI participated at the 2018 World Post Graduate (WPG) Expo, which was held at the Jakarta Convention Centre (JCC) on 12 - 13 May 2018, as part of a series of activities commemorating National Education Day (Hardiknas) which fell on 2 May 2018.
Minister for Research, Technology and Higher Education Mohamad Nasir together with the Ministry’s Director General for Science, Technology and Higher Education Resources Ali Ghufron Mukti, who also happens to be the Hardiknas Commemoration Committee Chairman, opened the event attended by local and international universities.
In his opening speech, Minister Nasir said that Indonesia is equipped with a generation gifted with academic excellence. Thus, the state should provide them with an optimal higher education facility.
In order to accomplish this, the Ministry will undertake steps. They are:
(1) Access to higher education should be expanded. This will increase Indonesia’s gross enrolment rate (APK), which is currently at 31.5%. The responsibility for this this will fall under the Ministry’s Directorate General for Learning and Student Affairs.
(2) Give deserving Indonesian students scholarships that will allow them to study in local and international universities. The Ministry’s Directorate General for Science, Technology and Higher Education Resources will be responsible for this.
Minister Nasir explained, “The APK figure is not ideal at present. There are 68.5% of Indonesian youth that have not yet entered higher education institutions. Probable reasons for this are our young citizens have gone abroad to study or they have decided to work when they were still at senior high school level.”
“The RISTEKDIKTI is developing a long-distance education system that will harness advanced technology, information and communications in the era of industrial revolution 4.0,” added Minister Nasir.
Online Learning System (SPADA) Indonesia is an e-learning or hybrid learning system that was launched to support this initiative. Minister Nasir shared that technology is not the only important factor in long distance learning, but also reviewed and assessed e-learning modules should be available.
SPADA products from 13 universities were exhibited during the two-day education fair.
SPADA Indonesia has courses that are available online. 4,829 online and open course modules are available for 776 courses that are being offered by 51 participating universities. 14,931 students, from 176 partnering universities, are taking part in SPADA.
Moreover, SPADA Indonesia in cooperation with the Ministry of Education and Cultures Directorate for Teacher and Education Staffers developed 1,268 modules for 53 e-learning or hybrid courses for the Teachers’ Profession course (PPG).
Overall, SPADA Indonesia has provided 6,097 online modules, which students and lecturers all over Indonesia can use.
Apart from SPADA, Minister Nasir also discussed the World Class Professor (WCP) program, which is a research collaboration program. He said that the achievements made by the Indonesian diaspora of researchers, who have worked abroad, should be harnessed to develop Indonesia. This can be done through the WCP.
“We are also creating a breakthrough program in which the Indonesian diaspora could contribute to develop the nation. Generally, there are only a few of them who return to Indonesia because they have achieved a lot overseas,” said Minister Nasir.
Mr Mukti added that the WCP bridged the Indonesian diaspora with domestic lecturers in Indonesia to produce international scientific publication. Indonesia is still in need of doctoral graduates to increase its competitiveness.
The Indonesian Excellent Lecturers Scholarship (BUDI) and the PNTB Affirmative Scholarship are other Ministry initiatives to increase the qualifications of lecturers.
The 2018 WPG Expo presented 52 institutions from the Netherlands, China, Germany, Indonesia, Republic of Ireland, Malaysia, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, Sweden, United States, France and rest of Europe.
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