BTVI to Create Online and Distance Education Centre

Apr, 29 2020

 

BTVI President

Dr. Robert W. Robertson

 

With the critical need to develop and deliver training throughout The Bahamas to address a growing global demand for technically skilled employees across the economy, President of the Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI), Dr. Robert W. Robertson, announced the creation of the Centre for Online and Distance Education (CODE).

BTVI will be providing short, industry-recognized online certificate courses, covering a wide range of technical subjects starting June 1st, 2020.  Courses will include, but not be limited to Basic Computers, the Internet of Things (IoT), Introduction to Networking, Introduction to Information Systems and Security, Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Entrepreneurship. 

"We are facing difficult economic times in The Bahamas and globally. It is important that we build on skills training for the new post COVID19 economy. The centre will make these courses available online to support skills training and workforce readiness throughout The Bahamas,” said Dr. Robertson.

The centre will be headed by Dean of Information Technology and Distance Education, Anthony Ramtulla. Under Mr. Ramtulla’s leadership, BTVI received the top award for the highest CompTIA certification scores out of 40 testing centers in 2017 and 2018. BTVI has over 300 students taking CompTIA exams annually.

“BTVI has been a CompTIA winner for technical training and it is recognized as a CISCO Academy. These are important industry connections which will be used to form our high quality industry-recognized certificates,” said Mr. Ramtulla.

In addition, CODE is designed to assist in course development, teacher training and improving quality in online education. To meet those goals, the centre will promote research and best practices. 

Meanwhile, more than 20 BTVI faculty are completing online courses delivered by the Commonwealth of Learning (COL).  Headquartered in Canada, the Commonwealth of Learning is the world’s only inter-governmental organization solely concerned with the promotion and development of distance education and open learning. It recently launched the International Partnership of Distance and Online Learning for COVID19 initiative with 44 global partners including the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the World Bank. BTVI has accepted an invitation to be a partner in this global exercise. 

COL President and Chief Executive Officer, Professor Asha Kanwar, emphasized that concrete action on the ground is needed to help teachers and students to continue the teaching/learning process without disruption.

“COL is standing with all our stakeholders - governments, educational institutions, teachers, learners and parents - during these times of crisis...this is not a time for planning but for action. Let us pool our expertise and resources to ensure that the doors of education remain open for all,” said Professor Kanwar. 

Dr. Robertson added that the invitation to join the innovative international partnership to advance online education is a recognition of the success of BTVI’s programs to date. He said the institution looks forward to continuing to improve its service to the country.