Universidad Tecnica Particular de Loja
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The Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja (UTPL) is presently an autonomous organisation in Loja, Ecuador. UTPL provides both on-campus and distance education.
UTPL was created by presidential decree in 1971 and administered by the government until October 1997. Today, it is run by missionaries and views itself as 'an educational institution with a social purpose'. A non-profit organisation financed by the Ecuadorian State, it was a pioneer of distance learning in Latin America, with distance learning provision available since 1976.
Since november 2000 is member of consortium-network of distance education CREAD in spanish Consorcio-red de educación a distancia, forming part of the board until today.
In 2004 they invested a lot of money to develop and improve eLearning tools, for example, the videoconferencing unit, building 21 rooms along the country.
In 2005 it began the use of Virtual learning enviroment.
Tools that they use to support open-distance learning:
- Videoconferencing: They use this tool for, ongoing training, tutorials, transmission of event, teleconference.
- Virtual learning enviroment: Till now more than 20.000 students have registred. This tool offer different services like advise teachers,downloading materials, virtual library, read the marks amongst others.
- Virtual library: There are more than 4.000 scientific magazines, different databases of different fields of studies.
Nowadays the offer 30 courses online, 18 of them are graduate programmes, the other 12 are postdgraduate programmes.
The Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja web site is at http://www.utpl.edu.ec/ingles/
UTPL was originally called the Open University of Loja (UAL), but was renamed in 1987.