Investigating access to quality education in urban and rural schools through the use of e-learning. A case study of Murewa High School and Hurungwe High School against two rural schools Rota Secondary and Hokodzi Secondary School
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Zimbabwe is committed to transforming teaching and learning at all levels of education through the introduction of e-learning. However, the successful introduction of e-learning into basic education depends largely on the availability of ICT infrastructure and the capacity of teachers and students to use them. Using rural and urban secondary schools in Murewa district as a case study, this study investigates the accessibility of e-learning infrastructure among students and teachers of rural and urban schools. It was found that access to e-learning resources by teachers and students was inadequate. Nonetheless, there were differences in access to e-learning resources between students and teachers of rural and urban schools. Students of urban schools had more access to e-learning resources and therefore had more access to quality education than their rural counterparts. Also, the use of e-learning resources in the classroom had more positive impacts on the learning motivations of students of urban schools than those of rural schools. Teachers of urban schools were also more likely to have access to e-learning resources than those of rural schools. This digital divide was largely due to rural communities not being able to afford the resources and poor infrastructure development. Since e-learning resources had positive motivations for teaching and learning activities in basic schools, it is recommended that the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education provides all basic schools across the country with ICT infrastructure. Also, efforts should be made to build the capacity of all teachers in order to facilitate the efficient introduction of e-learning in education.
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