Albin Jacobs

With Stage 2 of the phased State of Emergency set to run for another few weeks, life really has transformed in Namibia. Life as we know it across the globe has changed forever. We have all been trying to keep busy, some still just trying to work from home, others baking, learning to paint, catching up on sleep or rehearsing the ever-important TikTok dances.

We all cope in different ways. Some are picking up studies that fell by the wayside, or finally finding the time to sit and think how to develop themselves academically. This is where distance education comes into its own, it is as if it was designed for a Lockdown scenario.

Distance learning is not studying in isolation, even if you are in lockdown. A network of other students, lecturers and tutors are all online. Students still work together in groups; they have sounding boards and people to learn from. This is all part of the distance learning education process. There are even dedicated forums and chatrooms online for the students to interact and share ideas. You don’t have to set meetings, reschedule or commute to meet for assignments. By using available technologies, it ensures access to a wealth of up-to-date information for the distance learning student. You can do it from the comfort of your own home and now with the social distancing rules it makes perfect sense to study from home.

With a multitude of courses, higher certificates, and degrees that can be pursued through distance learning, there really isn’t a reason not to take the next step in your academic journey.

Technology is constantly and rapidly evolving and this is driving the evolution of distance learning. Recorded lectures, live streaming or video clips are used in higher education all around the world. With the proliferation of the internet, email and social media, distance learning has become more accessible in Namibia’s remote areas; all you need is an internet connection. We are now even at a point where due to school closures, children may be engaging in distance learning.

So, if baking bread or brewing is not your idea of personal growth during “the pandemic period and beyond, then perhaps pursuing a certificate or degree is the perfect alternative. Come out of the very challenging situation we find ourselves in with new academic knowledge and an accredited qualifications.

The future of distance learning is bright in Africa, the world’s present challenging times because of COVID-19 have brought it into even sharper focus. Change your lockdown story and start that course you have always been meaning to do. Pursue that higher certificate, diploma or degree that you have been dreaming of to transform your life.

Embrace the new normal.