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Home > Academics > School Of Continuing And Distance Education

School Of Continuing And Distance Education


For the last 50 years, the School of Continuing and Distance Education (SCDE) has been the leader in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) in Kenya. Its activities date back to 1953 when the first Department of Extra Mural Studies was founded in Makerere with a resident tutor for Kenya.

As the forerunner of the present University of Nairobi, the School has consistently maintained its position of leadership by being the torch bearer in the area of ODL. It has faithfully carried out its mandate of providing quality education and extending the University's reach and hence, training opportunities to the wider population in our country.

The School offers academic programmes using Open and Distance Learning methods (ODL) which is a convenient mode of teaching and learning that does not constrain the student to be physically present in the same location as the instructor. Historically, ODL meant correspondence study. Today, audio, video, and computer technologies are the more common delivery modes, in addition to face-to-face instruction.

The key defining elements of ODL are:

  •   The separation of teacher and learner during the learning process.
  •   The use of educational media to unite teacher and learner and carry course content.
  •   The provision of two-way communication between teacher, tutor, or educational agency and learner.
  • ODL was originally a tool for helping Universities reach beyond the campus. However, newer technology has made distance education an important tool for bringing learning resources onto campus and for sharing resources among campuses. University of Nairobi therefore needs to see ODL not as a separate activity, but as part of an integrated approach toward achieving University-wide strategic goals.

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