Differentiation in Access to, and the Use and Sharing of (Open) Educational Resources among Students and Lecturers at Kenyan Universities

Judith Pete, Fred Mulder, Jose Dutra Oliveira Neto


In order to obtain a fair ‘OER picture’ for the Global South a large-scale study has been carried out for a series of countries, including Kenya. In this paper we report on the Kenya study, run at four universities that have been selected with randomly sampled students and lecturers. Empirical data have been generated by the use of a student and a lecturer questionnaire to which in total 798 students and 43 lecturers have responded. Selected from the very rich source two major outcomes are: (i) there is a significant digital differentiation among lecturers and students at urban versus rural universities in terms of their proficiency and internet accessibility; and (ii) the awareness and appreciation of the OER concept and open licensing is low but from the actual processing by respondents of educational resources (not necessarily open) a ‘preparedness for openness’ can be derived that promises well for the future.


Educational Resources; Open Educational Resources; OER; ICT; differentiation; access; sharing; Kenyan universities; students; lecturers

Full Text:



Adala, A. (2016). Current State of Advancement of OER in Kenya. Moscow: UNESCO IITE. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0024/002452/245200e.pdf

Aguyo, S. (2010). Real Cost of Computers in Schools: Power up with information Technology: Archry Technology Management Ltd., Nairobi, Kenya.

Buchmann, C. (1999). The State and Schooling in Kenya: Historical Developments and Current Challenges. Africa Today, 46(1), pp. 95–117.

Daniel, J. (2009). Internationalisation, regionalisation and globalisation: Breaking out of the iron triangle. Speech at the 2009 UNESCO World Conference on Higher Education in Paris, France. Retrieved from http://www.col.org/resources/speeches/2009presentation/Pages/2009-07-06.aspx

Hatakka, M. (2009). Build it and They Will Come? - Inhibiting Factors For Reuse of Open Content in Developing Countries. EJISDC, 37(5), 1–16.

Hodgkinson-Williams, C. (2013). Research into Open Educational Resources for Development in Post-secondary Education in the Global South (ROER4D). Project Plan. University of Cape Town, South Africa. Retrieved from https://open.uct.ac.za/bitstream/handle/11427/6050/ROER4D Proposal - May 2013.pdf?sequence=2

ICT Authority, Kenya. (2014). The Kenya National ICT Masterplan: Towards a Digital Kenya. Nairobi. Retrieved from https://www.kenet.or.ke/sites/default/files/Final ICT Masterplan Apr 2014.pdf

KICD / Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development. (2016). Standards for Online Open Educational Resources. Retrieved from http://www.kicd.ac.ke/images/ICT/STANDARDS FOR OER Draft 1.pdf

KU / Kenyatta University. (2014). Kenyatta University digitizes learning. Retrieved from http://www.ku.ac.ke/dsvol/index.php/admissions/35news/56-kenyatta-university-digitizes-learning.html

Laaria, M. (2013). Challenges in the Implementation ICT in Public Secondary Schools in Kenya, case study of Meru County, Kenya. Retrieved from http://www.ijsse.com/sites/default/files/issues/2013/v4i1/paper/Paper-20.pdf

MIC / Ministry of Information and Communication. (2006). National Information & Communication Technology (ICT) Policy. Nairobi, Kenya. Retrieved from http://www.researchictafrica.net/countries/kenya/National_ICT_Policy_2006.pdf

MICT / Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology. (2016). The Constituency Digital Innovation Hubs. Nairobi, Kenya. Retrieved from http://www.ict.go.ke/constituency-digital-innovation-hubs/

MOEST / Ministry of Education, Science and Technology. (2012). A policy framework for education and training. Reforming education and training in Kenya. (Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Sessional Paper No 12 of 2012). Retrieved from http://www.ideaphd.net/files/6013/5386/6615/Kenya_Ministry_of_Edu_Sessional_Paper_2012.pdf

Mosha, R. S. (2000). The Heartbeat of Indigenous Africa. New York: Garland Publishing.

Mulder, F. (2010). Open … Heerlen: Open Universiteit (Rectorate farewell address book, pp. 5–25, in Dutch). Retrieved from https://www.ou.nl/c/document_library/get_file?uuid=0be0bd20-1a82-467e-abc4-02b7e65fdc91&groupId=10815

Mulder, F. (2013). The Logic of National Policies and Strategies for Open Educational Resources. The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, 14(2). http://dx.doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v14i2.1536

Ooko, M. & Mays, T. (2015). Opening Learning at Africa Nazarene University: Case study. Retrieved from http://www.oerafrica.org/system/files/12032/anu-case-study-2015b.pdf?file=1&type=node&id=12032

Rikers, J. (2017). Education for Development: Using the potential of ICT and OER. PhD Thesis: Open University of the Netherlands, submitted.

ROER4D / Research on Open Educational Resources for Development (ROER4D) (2017). Retrieved from http://www.roer4d.org

UNESCO/COL. (2012). 2012 Paris OER Declaration. Retrieved from http://www.unesco.org/new/fileadmin/MULTIMEDIA/HQ/CI/CI/pdf/Events/Paris OER Declaration_01.pdf

UNESCO. (2013, June). National Implementation strategy workshop on Open educational resources (OER) in Nairobi, Kenya. Retrieved from http://en.unesco.org/events/national-implementation-strategy-workshop-open-educational-resources-oer-nairobi-kenya

Vision 2030 Republic of Kenya. (2007). Nairobi, Kenya. Retrieved from http://thereddesk.org/sites/default/files/vision_2030_brochure_July_2007.pdf

Wainaina, M. (2011). Gendered Challenges and opportunities in Module II programs in Kenyan Public Universities: Critical appraisal. International Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences, 1(20), 95–109.

Wiley, D. (2007, August 8). Iterating toward openness - Open Education License Draft. Retrieved from http://opencontent.org/blog/archives/355

Wiley, D. (2014, March 5). Iterating toward openness - The Access Compromise and the 5th R. Retrieved from http://opencontent.org/blog/archives/3221

Wiley, D. (2016, January 29). Iterating toward openness - The Consensus Around “Open”. Retrieved from https://opencontent.org/blog/archives/4397

ICU / University Web ranking and reviews. (2016). 4International University and Colleges ranking. Retrieved from http://www.4icu.org

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.9.2.574


  • There are currently no refbacks.