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The Ministry of Education conducted a training workshop on iLab for faculty and researchers at both the Kigali Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) and the National University of Rwanda (NUR). The training was officially opened by the Rector of KIST, Dr. Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya.

The iLab-Africa project started as a partnership between MIT, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) Nigeria, Makerere University, and the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) to establish the potential of online laboratories (iLabs) in higher education in Sub-Saharan Africa. It was agreed to include Rwanda in the partnership to enable remote iLab facilities to be available to students in Rwanda. This will be either through accessing remote facilities in MIT and the other partner universities regionally, or to establish experiments in universities in Rwanda that can be accessed by other universities in Rwanda remotely.

The initial objective is in support of Physics and Electrical Engineering Curricula in Rwandan Institutions, particularly in support of introductory level electronics and physics classes with the intention to develop electronic circuit building skills.

The training workshop was conducted by two Lecturers from Makerere University who were formally invited by the Hon. Minister of Education. Twenty (20) participants took part which comprised: 9 Lecturers/Researchers from KIST, 9 Lecturers/Researchers from NUR and 2 MINEDUC Staff members from the Research and Development Unit.

During his visit to the training, the Hon. Minister of Education said that iLab is an important research opportunity for our academic staff and a solution to Rwanda in terms of sharing limited laboratory facilities among our Higher Learning Institutions (HLIs). He also suggested that this technology should not only benefit HLIs but also IPRCs and technical schools.

The training was officially closed by the Director General of Science Technology and Research (DSTR) in the Ministry of Education, Dr. Marie Christine Gasingirwa. In her closing remarks, she thanked the trainers from Makerere University and KIST Management for facilitating this activity. She urged the trainees that the last day of this important training is nothing but an opening for further challenges and opportunities. She encouraged the trainees to use the “late- comers advantage” and quickly learn from what was developed by others including our neighbours from Makerere University, so that we can have iLabs developed by Rwandans in various areas in the near future.

For media inquiries, please contact:

• Eng. Remy Twiringiyimana, Director of Research and Development; Ministry of Education; +250 (0) 785 368 130; Email: rtwiringiyimana@mineduc.gov.rw

  
©2012 Rwanda Ministry of Education