Digitalisation has become an unavoidable factor in all areas of life today. Information and communication technologies, in particular computers and Internet technologies, enable new ways of teaching and learning. In terms of digitalisation and web presence, here are the most fashionable universities in French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa.
A ranking in 2021 (the Webometrics) listed higher education institutions on the basis of their academic web presence and digital services. In French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa, the Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar appears to be the most digitalised.
It is followed by the University of Abomey-Calavi in Benin and the University of Yaoundé I in Cameroon. In addition to the University of Yaoundé I, several other universities in Cameroon stand out in terms of digitalisation. This includes the universities of Dschang, Buea, Maroua and Ngaoundéré. Other universities include the University of Antananarivo in Madagascar, the University of Félix Houphouët-Boigny in Ivory Coast and the University of Kinshasa in DRC. Speaking of digitalisation and web presence, these universities in French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa are the best.
Digitalisation of education, especially in higher education
Current developments in the world make the digital presence of a higher education and scientific research organisation a necessity.
Digitalising higher education means integrating new technologies to develop innovative teaching approaches. Moreover, the digitalisation of universities should also facilitate the transfer of scientific and cultural knowledge generated by universities through the promotion of open access initiatives.
In Madagascar, for example, the government has embarked on a reform of the payment of study allowances to the six public universities as part of its initiative to digitalise higher education. This initiative aims to pay these allowances via mobile banking services. Universities like the University of Abomey-Calavi in Benin have been doing this for several years.
Covid has accelerated the digitalisation of African universities
The Covid 19 pandemic has accelerated the digitalisation of African universities. Indeed, with the health crisis, countries have become better equipped with digital infrastructure to cope with the strain. Thus, Covid 19 demonstrated the importance of technology and, in many ways, accelerated the digital transformation. In its time, internet technologies and tools have enabled teachers to deliver lessons from their homes to avoid contact and thus the risk of contamination.
The World Health Organisation had encouraged citizens to use digital payment services wherever possible, stating that the use of cash could be a risk factor contributing to the spread of the coronavirus. Mobile financial services have expanded across the continent, enabling governments and start-ups to conduct large volumes of digital transactions.