Research is an integral part of the activities of RETRIDOL.
At RETRIDOL, we aspire to conduct results-oriented research that will facilitate the growth and development of open, distance and eLearning in a way that will build the capacity of the next generation of Africans to generate new knowledge and innovative approaches and solutions to resolving problems. We also aim to foster a research culture that is dedicated to the promotion of lifelong learning, inclusivity, quality education, flexible learning and information technologies for teaching and learning. RETRIDOL research activities are organised under three broad strands:
- Conducting research into open, distance and eLearning practices at the fundamental, experimental and application levels to enrich our training programmes, management processes, and to meet the needs of a dynamic social and educational context. In pursuit of this goal, RETRIDOL is constantly spearheading different kinds of action- based research and evaluation activities;
- Coordinating research proposals in open, distance and eLearning. RETRIDOL is responsible for coordinating the Commonwealth of Learning’s annual research grant for ODeL research activities in the West African sub-region. The grant offers funding of at least two research proposals that have been adjudged to be of high quality and fundable by an independent peer review team of ODeL experts drawn from across the Commonwealth. This activity also involves information sharing about research funding opportunities with contacts across the West African sub-region and the rest of Africa.
Disseminating research outputs through RETRIDOL’s flagship journal – West African Journal of Open and Flexible Learning – which is currently the only dedicated open-access journal in the West African sub-region. RETRIDOL continues to strive to enhance the quality and reach of its journal in becoming the best open access journal on open, distance and eLearning in Africa
COMMONWEALTH OF LEARNING (COL) SPONSORED RESEARCH IN OPEN AND DISTANCE LEARNING
The National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) in partnership with the Commonwealth of Learning (COL), an intergovernmental organisation of the Commonwealth heads of government, established the Regional Training and Research Institute for Distance and Open Learning (RETRIDOL) in response to the need to train, and build capacity for research, and the practice for open and distance learning in the West African sub-region. The COL also supports a COL Chair in ODL at NOUN. The Chair has been held by Professor Olugbemiro Jegede, a former Vice-Chancellor. NOUN (2002-2010) and Professor Vincent Ado Tenebe, former Vice-Chancellor, NOUN (2010-2016).
RETRIDOL facilitates research activities undertaken by academic staff of ODL dual and single-mode institutions in Nigeria and the sub-region. COL sponsored research projects in open and distance learning at NOUN within the period covered by this report are presented below:
Minority Students in Graduate Studies: An Exploration into Women’s Accessibility to Higher Education through the Open and Distance Learning Mode in Nigeria
An Exploration into Women’s Accessibility to Higher Education through the Open and Distance Learning Mode in Nigeria” was to determine the effective strategies required to handle minority women’s barrier to accessing graduate studies in Nigeria through open and distance learning mode. It identified the factors that have prompted minority women despite observable barriers to access graduate studies and education generally. It also provides an appropriate response to how minority women in graduate studies see their access to education.
Bridging the Gender Gap: Measures to Improve Women’s Participation in Higher Education Management in Nigeria
The objective of the research project was to determine the reasons why there was a huge gap between senior male and female staff that perform the administrative roles in higher education management in Nigeria. The research set out to identify the degree of access to education and training created for senior female administrative and management staff of higher institutions by distance learning institutions.
Metacognitive awareness and self-regulation learning strategies among students in self-directed learning situations: An exploratory study
Although NOUN has put in place various support programmes designed to help students navigate through learning and progress in their studies, assessment records indicate that some students perform below expectation, particularly in pen-on-paper semester examinations. Therefore, the quest for a solution to improve NOUN students’ learning efficiency prompted the need for the study. The main aim of the study was to explore the extent to which NOUN students possess metacognitive awareness processes and how well they regulate those processes in learning
Evaluation of the Contributions of Open and Distance Learning Education Institutions in Nigeria.
The objective of the research project was to identify the degree of access to education and training created by distance learning institutions. It aimed at evaluating the availability and appropriateness of the technological infrastructure adopted by the distance learning institutions and also to determine the readiness of the distance learning institutions to provide education through the open and distance learning mode as the alternative means of providing education to the citizenry.
Employers’ perception and expectations of professional competency of distance learning graduate: A tracer study of graduates of National Open University of Nigeria
The study was designed to track NOUN graduates in their places of work to ascertain their level of professional competency and to explore employers’ expectations of graduate competencies. Since research has found that competencies are acquired at different rates in different professions, it is essential to focus on one particular field at a time when conducting a tracer study
An Expository Study of Quality Assurance Practices in the Single and Dual Mode Distance Learning Institutions in Nigeria
The objectives of the research project are to identify the areas of operations of the institutions that are quality assured; analyse the standard of quality assurance adopted by the institutions; evaluate the appropriateness of the quality assurance indicators being implemented and also identify the challenges militating against the quality assurance that is put in place by the institutions.
An assessment of competency-based learning elements in study materials developed by the National Open University of Nigeria
The broad aim of the study was to evaluate the extent to which competency-based learning elements are embedded in the design and development of course materials used by NOUN students and to assess whether or not the students possess the requisite skills and competencies as prescribed in their course programmes