Interactive Virtual ESL Tutorials Feasibility Study (Ethiopia)

Online placement (E-Classroom)

Length of Placement 1 Semester

Note: This placement is offered under our E-Volunteering Classroom Program and is reserved for Canadian post-secondary instructors only. If you qualify to apply to this placement under the e-volunteering classroom program, please email natalie.graham@cusointernational.org. Applications received online will not be considered.

Project Rationale:
English is a medium of instruction both in secondary and tertiary education in Ethiopia. However, research has shown that the English language proficiency level of the majority students is lower than the expected standard and as a result, directly affects their academic performance. As a result, the public universities have designed English language tutorials to address the gap. However, budget constraints and lack of proportional skilled language trainers have been the major bottlenecks to deliver the plan.

Due to low English language skills, main students, mostly female university students, get academic dismissal or if they graduated somehow, it is difficult for them to get professional work in the labor market. In return, that leads to under employment or low productivity. Nonetheless, the national economy highly needs well competent and confident young professional labor force to alleviate poverty and to be a self-reliance nation. Therefore, improving English language proficiency of university students through cost effective approach becomes one of the critical agendas for delivering quality of education in Ethiopia.

Project Objectives:
This project is suitable for at least two groups of students with the following specializations:

Research Group #1: During Phase 1 of this project, students with Business / Communication / Education backgrounds will focus on the available, free online English as a second language tutorial content for university students. Student researchers will: a) conduct an inventory of available tools, b) analyze tools and recommend the best options and c) develop an approach to implementing these tools in an academic setting.

Research Group #2: During Phase 2 of this project, students with IT / Engineering background will focus on delivering use friendly interactive English language tutorial in slow internet connection environment. Student researchers, based on the above study will a) analyze the technical requirements utilized for implementing and using these tools and b) recommend the best tool for use in Ethiopian academic contexts for limited Internet connectivity.

For more information about this placement, the classroom e-volunteering program, or to apply for this project, please natalie.graham@cusointernational.org or visit our website at: https://cusointl.org/EvolClassroomProgram