What Are The Top 6 Barriers to ICT4Edu Success in Secondary Schools?

Go ahead, name them. Yes, count them off with your fingers. I bet you can name six in less than 60 seconds. You probably got to 16 or 26 in that time period. Bonus points if you add your list in the comments section.


Well the smart folks over at Columbia University Teachers College, the Earth Institute at Columbia University, Kampala University, and University of Nairobi did a year-long study of Ericsson’s Connect To Learn schools and found these six barriers to integrating Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) into secondary education settings in rural sub-Saharan Africa.

  1. Physical Infrastructure
  2. ICT Infrastructure
  3. Teacher ICT and Pedagogical Skills and Knowledge
  4. Open Source Teaching and Learning Resources
  5. Student ICT Participation and Knowledge
  6. Public-Private Partnership Implementation

I do seriously hope that you named these six right at the start, and then went into the systematic issues including historic and continued underinvestment in education at all levels by government, poor teacher morale, lack of basic school infrastructure like toilets and books, etc.
I don’t want to harp on the report authors too much, but we already knew all this. I wrote about these issues on OLPCnews.com back in 2006, and Inveneo built entire solution ecosystems to address these problems in 2008. While the report has pretty pictures and a really cool layout, I am wondering why none of the 35 report authors and contributors yelled “stop the presses!” and pushed for the report to uncover things we don’t know.