I met an extraordinary man – a young dude – today; a graphics designer dude; a 2nd year student at Vega College in Umhlanga. There he was working part time in a print shop and he made a difference to my day.
I brought a print job into the shop and designer dude served me, mid sentences about how wondrous his course was and how he loved that everything was online and how easy it was to really study material and do assignments all because of the technology in place at Vega. Now if you think my sentence is just too long you should have heard designer dude. He just did not stop. He sparked positive energy and enthusiasm. It was entrancing. I mentioned odd things about Blackboard Learn (Vega’s LMS of choice) and e-learning and this spurred him on. How did I know about Blackboard and exactly what did I do to know so much?
I‘ve worked with academic staff but never with a young student who is so energised by the concepts of access to learning online. Clearly the technology infrastructure in Vega College is successful but the role of this dude’s lecturer with his careful organisation of materials and it’s effectiveness is impressive. The implementation of technology can never replace the teacher. Technology is simply the vehicle for delivery. It still takes a talented instructor to inspire and guide students to success.
South Africa has to move away from just being adequate in its delivery of learning. Churchill once commented, “What is adequacy? Adequacy is no standard at all.”
Imagine a South Africa where all students could have the same reaction as designer dude.