My experience with the TESSA MOOC

Said Kh. Juma in Zanzibar

I am a newly registered TESSA ambassador from the State University of Zanzibar, Tanzania. I completed the MOOC Making Teacher Education Relevant for 21st Century Africa run by TESSA and The Open University of UK. This was my first MOOC that I had completed (100%). I had in the past joined many courses but I never reached beyond 50% progress. However, this time I was so enthusiastic about TESSA that I completed the TESSA MOOC, and then I was motivated to join and complete one more intensive four-week MOOC Understanding Autism offered by the University of Kent. Participating in TESSA MOOC has really motivated me to convince my colleagues to join TESSA. I was fascinated by the resources available with regard to teacher education. MOOCs have actually inverted the traditional classroom. Teaching and learning have never been and should not be confined to the four walls of a classroom. There are many resources ‘out there’. TESSA helps us to explore them. I was also motivated by TESSA to find that some of the resources have been translated into Kiswahili, which is one of the leading African languages in the world.  

I look forward to working with TESSA colleagues to improve teacher education in the region

Rose Nyambura in Kenya

TESSA MOOC opened my eyes to possibilities I hadn't considered before. The MOOC participants' contributions were quite informative and the quizzes as well as puzzles refreshing. How I wish teacher educators and teachers in Kenya can board the TESSA bus!!! Teaching–learning process would be transformed completely. Our learners would become active participants and enjoy interacting with different learning materials/activities organized by their teachers. Teaching would be more fulfilling and enjoyable. 

Charles William Zulu, TESSA Ambassador/MOOC facilitator, in Zambia

I wish to share with you the changes I have undergone during the TESSA MOOC which started on 30th October 2017 and ended on 10th December 2017:

  • After being trained as a MOOC facilitator in Kigali, Rwanda and in Kabwe, Zambia my facilitation skills and knowledge are now participant centred;
  • learning online has misconceptions that it is not real and one cannot be prepared adequately, however, this not the case, it is real and one can be prepared adequately;
  • online learning, yes, it is sometimes lonely, but it is more interactive and I enjoyed the mature and educative interactions;
  • unlike face-to-face learning, online learning is truly flexible, I could learn at my own pace;
  • my ICT skills improved;
  • my understanding of Learner Centred Education improved too.

Bring on board more of this type of learning and programs in education innovations!

Florence Kisirkoi in Kenya

The 2017 TESSA MOOC experience was one of the most enriching teacher education professional experiences in my teacher educator career of over ten years. I had heard about TESSA but the role of TESSA OERs, accessing and using them in class had not been clear till Kris and Olivier made it clear and interesting during 2017 DETA conference. They engaged us in navigating FutureLearn platform.

Later during our School Board meeting, I introduced TESSA MOOC course and the lecturers showed great interest: eleven of them enrolled and three others from other institutions, total sixteen enrolled.

The course coincided with close of semester activities making it difficult to put lecturers together for face to face meeting. I opened a WhatsApp group for interactions, phone calls, text messages and met individuals. I helped them get started sometimes with consultation with Kris, Olivier and Sarah and gave them encouragement and guidance. Four dropped out but others are working hard to complete.

The lead educators Kris, Sandra, Clare and Liz made learning fun, gave clear guiding comments. The course content was applicable to our classroom situation. The OERs, videos, case studies, quizzes, interactions with learner colleagues and promise of certificate were inspiringly great! The FutureLearn platform was user friendly. The course provider, Open University of UK is credible. 

Brenda Ampumuza in Uganda

Please allow me to share my experience with the MOOC, specifically what I learnt:

  1. How to incorporate common ICT tools and how to use OER to bring about active learning.
  2. The experience with the various TESSA OERs will be unforgettable. Most of them are applicable in our conditions like working with large classes, effective demonstrations, group work.
  3. The group interactions were also enriching, as there was always something to learn from other people's experiences or views or ideas.
  4. How to use learner-centred education in day to day teaching was learning process this was my best