The Zambia Research and Education Network (ZAMREN) has assisted 22 member universities install Moodle, a virtual learning management platform to allow the institutions carry on with teaching and learning activities during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In addition, ZAMREN is also hosting all the 22 Moodle instances of the universities at its data center for free as its contribution to the country’s education and as an incentive to its member institutions to install and use the platform.

The NREN’s System Administrator, Henry Simfukwe says since universities closed in Zambia due to the Covid-19 pandemic, ZAMREN has been engaging members on how they can effectively use the platform.

“Our assistance to the 22 universities involved conducting online training workshops for ICT staff on how to administer the system and for teaching staff on how to add content and deliver online classes. Each institutions’ online training was done over a period of 4 days. Institutions were also helped to do basic customization to the platform to fit their operations and processes,” said Simfukwe.

According to Simfukwe, the Moodle installations have triggered an increase in local bandwidth usage as the universities are using Moodle along with a lot of video conferencing to conduct classes.

Universities in Zambia closed in March 2020 following an upsurge of Covid-19 cases in the country. On 11 September 2020, government announced that schools could fully open following the partial opening of universities for final year students only since July 2020.

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