On Alison, you are free to sign up, enroll and study! This is because we believe in providing free high quality knowledge and workplace skills training and being a catalyst for social change, opportunity and prosperity for all people, no matter who or where they are.
For centuries, accessible education, especially for females, has been a real problem in many developing countries around the globe. In 2010, The United Nations OHCHR Deputy High Commissioner Kyung-wha Kang disclosed that there were 130 million young people out of school and 70 percent of them were girls. This may sound astounding but it's the reality for many girls around the world. In countries like Somalia, 95 percent of girls are uneducated and in Pakistan's Taliban invested communities, girls are shot at on their commute to school just because they seek better opportunities.
These realities are staggering but on the other hand Kang says that, >“When a girl is educated the benefits are truly life-changing. This statement can be backed up by extensive research like in this Bloomberg article, which shows how the rise in female education helps drive economic growth and food security. Educated women are generally better at managing their own health as well as their family's. They are more involved in the formal job market and earn better income. They also tend to have less children and the ability to educate and provide health care for them. Therefore any nation that educates girls and women is a healthier, more productive and financially secure economy.
This is a future we'd love to see for girls and women, but we can't ignore the many obstacle still in the way of achieving this goal. Firstly, parents cannot afford to pay fees for their children which detrimental to the maintenance of schools and availability of teachers, which puts the quality of the education in question. Girls also face socio-economic hindrances such as being caretakers of their homes and younger siblings from a very young age. Another big problem is commuting to school because there are fears of violence, kidnapping and sexual assault.
While governments of these countries have led initiatives to encourage girls' education, there are still problems with accessibility and the only feasible option is provided by MOOCs. Traditional education has been somewhat dethroned by MOOCs like Alison, because these digital learning platforms lift the barriers of accessibility and make quality education available to millions of people around the world.
How exactly does Alison help women in developing countries? You may ask. Well, here's how:
They can access over 750 online courses and study materials from their homes; anytime, at their own pace and on any device for free.
- Most of these women live in rural areas, so they don't have to be dependent on local educational institutions.
- They have a range of courses to study, giving them the freedom to expand their knowledge base in many subject fields.
- With this education, they can have access to well-paying jobs.
- Women who have left school to take care of their children can now close their education and skills gap with online education. Preparing them for re-entry into the workforce.
- Since the internet is a global community, they will get to interact with fellow learners around the world; learning, sharing, growing confidence themselves and their opinions and broadening their world view in general.
The advancement of any nation is dependent on every citizen availing of their full fundamental rights, especially the right to an education. Used efficiently, the positive power of MOOCs can empower women in developing countries to become diligent, contributing citizens and agents for change.
Explore our Alison website and find out how you can use our service to educate girls, women and all people in your communities. Do you already have ideas or questions? Share them with us in the comments below and include us in your conversations on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter!