Thanks to the advancements in information communication technology because students can now make use of electronic resources and also learn electronically. These two concepts, eResources and eLearning, are part and parcel of knowledge acquisition and sharing. Though used interchangeably, the two terms are different and below are the distinctive highlights of each, to enable use make the best of use of both.eResources refer to any information or material that can be accessed electronically.
These may take the form of electronic journals, scholarly databases, electronic books, hybrid digital collections and internet gateways.
The eResources are famous for their convenience, and having access to the latest and up–to-date information.
The inherent extra features for eResources such as links to other databases, search facilities and supplementary information all make it a plus.
eLearning on the other hand is a learning platform that utilises electronic technologies to access educational curriculum outside a traditional classroom.
eLearning includes but is not limited to completely virtual programmes, distance learning and blended programmes that are a hybrid of traditional classrooms and eLearning platforms.
The good trend of eLearning has been embraced by UCU as well.
According to the UCU strategic plan for teaching and learning, goal 3.5, there is need to maximize on creating programmes that can make education available to a wider, non-residential student population and eLearning is one way that can help us achieve this objective.
The eLearning platform has multiple advantages that include cost effectiveness and saving plenty of time since limitations of space and distance are overcome.
Learning takes place 24/7, anywhere, anytime. This flexibility amplifies the issue of convenience associated with eLearning.
The discreet nature of eLearning is another strong point. The platform allows individuals to tackle the subject matter at their own pace. Tracking of course progress is also possible courtesy of the Learning Management Systems (LMS).
UCU uses the Moodle learning management system where students can log in from anywhere in the world to access their class materials and interact with one another.
Each institution uses a specific system, but they are all similar in their ability to present course material including class syllabus, assignments,
quizzes, and provide video and audio plus a whiteboard screen where the lesson is presented just like it would be on a classroom’s video screen or blackboard.
You can interact with instructors, access course materials and stimulate debate among your fellow students when it fits your schedule.
All specific course information such as how to reach the instructor, what work is expected, and deadlines to turn in assignments and take tests will be found within your course site.
In conclusion, eResources and eLearning are complimentary aspects of the learning process at UCU, so lecturers and students are encouraged to make the best use of both.
Atukwase is a Librlian at Hamu Mukasa Library, Uganda Christian Unversity