Nepal (Nepali: नेपाल [neˈpal]), officially the Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It has an area of 147,181 square kilometres (56,827 sq mi) and a population of approximately 26,494,504 (and nearly 2 million absentee workers living abroad). It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India. Specifically, the Indian states of Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, and Sikkim border Nepal, while across the Himalayas lies the Tibetan Autonomous Region. Kathmandu is the nation's capital and largest metropolis.
For further general information see Wikipedia:Nepal.
Education in Nepal
For a general description of education in Nepal see Education:Nepal.
For a description more focussed to e-learning see E-learning:Nepal.
Internet in Nepal
Internet in Education
Copyright law in Nepal
Copyright law in Education
OER Initiatives in Nepal
Rennie and Mason claim that "There has been some involvement with distance education techniques in Nepal, largely to do with the training of teachers in rural areas (Thapaliya, 2006) using radio, cassette tapes, and printed materials, but this pilot has been very limited. As with Bhutan, the value of open education degrees is widely suspect by most academics, administrators, and employers (and therefore students too) although the university has recently announced its intention to recognise a second degree obtained by distance/ open learning so long as the first degree is from a 'traditional' route. There is an understanding of the need to move towards the use of distance education methods, and a general commitment to this from the University and from government, but as yet this is solely rhetorical. Internet access is poor to non-existent outwith major urban areas although there is a rapid increase in mobile phone users, and Nepal Telecom seems poised on the cusp of a campaign to roll out wireless and satellite broadband connection, subject to continued funding." The pedagogical tradition in Nepal also generates resistance to open learning: "Where a belief in the importance of content and in the authority of the teacher as knowledge expert prevails, those forms of distributed education which pass more control to the learner are inherently suspect. The importance of the content prevails over the educational context, and learning styles are conditioned to perpetuate the role of passive learners rather than critical thinkers seeking to apply their acquired knowledge in new ways." But on a brighter note, "The Nepalese have expressed an interest, in principle, to create an Open University of Nepal, based upon existing academic strengths in key areas." (1)
Acharya points out the difficulties posed for the establishment of the Open University of Nepal by an unconductive political environment: "Political environment in Nepal especially after the restoration of Democracy in 1991 has been constantly unstable. The phenomena such as frequent change of governments and thereby blockage of policies formulated by former government has been hindrance for any initiative. Institutions which are already in operation do not generally suffer; but the institutions like OUN which are in the making face major hindrance due to political instability." (2)
Doctoral dissertation of Tiffany Zenith Ivins entitled 'Localization of Open Educational Resources (OER) in Nepal: Strategies of Himalayan Knowledge-Workers' (http://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/cdm/ref/collection/ETD/id/2651)
National OER initiatives
OLE Nepal: "OLE Nepal (Open Learning Exchange Nepal) is a social benefit organization dedicated to enhancing teaching-learning in schools through the integration of technology and to provide uniform access to quality educational materials across different geographic areas and socio-economic strata. OLE Nepal develops and distributes free educational content , trains teachers to integrate technology in classrooms, implements technology interventions in rural schools, and helps build local capacity in technology and education." (3)
OLE Nepal runs a free digital library: "E-Pustakalaya is an education-focused digital library containing full-text documents, books, images, videos, audio files, and interactive educational software that can be accessed through an intranet or on the Internet. OLE Nepal started the development of E-Pustakalaya in 2008 with the aim to improve childrens’ reading skills and develop a reading culture in schools by giving them free and open access to age-appropriate reading materials and to enable students to do research projects and promote habit of independent inquiry. Since E-Pustakalaya went live in 2009, teachers as well as other adults have also benefited widely from various teaching resources, and educational materials in agriculture, health, environment, local technologies, etc." (4)
And also offers a free collection of digital learning materials: "E-Paath is a collection of subject-specific, and grade-specific digital learning materials that were designed and developed by OLE Nepal, and is at the core of our ICT in Education program. Conceptualized by educators and curriculum experts, these interactive educational software modules are closely aligned with the national curriculum and are designed to help teachers and students meet the learning objectives outlined in the curriculum. ... The prepared materials go through a round of review by other experts before they are approved and finalized. These activities employ various features of technology such as audio, images, animation and text to help students better understand concepts in various subjects. From conceptualization to design and development, the team has paid close attention to ensure that the activities are fun and interactive, and the graphic elements, text and audio components are contextualized to match students local environment." (5)
Regional OER initiatives
Institutional OER initiatives
1. Mason, Robin and Rennie, Frank. The Development of Distributed Learning Techniques in Bhutan and Nepal. The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning. Vol.8 No.1 2007 (March) (http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/339/765)