Academics Without Borders (AWB) is a Canadian non-profit organization. Its mission is to help low and middle-income countries improve their universities, so that they can train their own experts and conduct research to promote their countries’ development.

AWB’s projects are involved in the full range of activities, from expanding and improving existing institutions and programs to helping create new ones. AWB fulfills its mission by providing volunteer experts for projects that originate in, and are owned by, developing world institutions of higher education. Volunteers work online and/or travel to the partner university. Volunteers work online and/or travel to the partner university. Volunteers are reimbursed for their travel expenses but are not paid a salary.

Volunteer Opportunity: Promoting online and blended learning

Number of Volunteers: 4-6

Language: English

Location: All volunteer work will be conducted online

Background:
Online education has been an area of intense interest and development over the past two decades, but the global COVID-19 pandemic created an additional impetus for organizations to adopt online teaching and learning in an accelerated fashion.

AWB’s experience during the pandemic has revealed the significant benefits of embracing online delivery as a major component of its operations. Online programming allows us to bring together large groups of volunteers from numerous countries with a wide range of expertise to offer projects in low and middle-income countries, including in places where on-site work was not previously possible.

We seek volunteers to assist with supporting our programs and other AWB volunteers as they deliver projects online and/or in a blended format.

* Please note that we refer to the institutions of higher education in low- and middle-income countries where our projects take place as our “partner institutions.”

Volunteer Role Description:
Volunteers will work on the development and delivery of online and blended projects in collaboration with other volunteers who have expertise in the content area of the project and with faculty and staff at our partner institutions. The support provided by the volunteer will vary with each project, including strategic guidance aimed at designing high-quality online educational strategies, adapting content to online delivery, and offering technical assistance.

Examples of projects where volunteers might contribute include:
– AWB is partnering with a university based in Pakistan and East Africa which has developed an effective online workshop to enhance the skills of their faculty to deliver courses. AWB volunteers will make this workshop available to other low and middle-income universities, enabling faculty to optimize their students’ online learning experience.
– Strengthening Engineering Research is an AWB program that has been successfully offered entirely online in pilot projects in Uganda and Ethiopia over the past two years. Plans are underway to modify the delivery format and improve the learning experience by using a mixture of asynchronous and synchronous components.

AWB is responding to the broad demand for projects aimed at enhancing the basic research and scholarship skills of faculty with a new program that combines an online workshop on essential skills with one-on-one mentoring.

The online teaching and learning support roles will assist other AWB volunteers to be more effective in achieving project objectives. There will also be opportunities to share your knowledge and skills with colleagues at partner universities who desire to learn about effective online teaching strategies and tools.

We are looking for volunteers with knowledge and expertise in one or more of the following areas:
– Applying sound pedagogical design to online learning at the post-secondary level (instructional design)
– Advising and supporting instructors in creating online courses
– Working with instructors to implement best practices in online teaching
– Digital media development skills for creating online content such as: video/audio editing, blending and sequencing of content, and using related software applications
– Web development skills such as: overall page design and layout, embedded interactives using H5P, infographic creation

Volunteer Requirements:
We are looking for experienced faculty and staff (working or retired) with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and 4 years of related work experience who bring the preceding skills. Applicants with experience working in academic settings in low and middle-income countries are especially encouraged to apply.

Start Date and Duration:
Start date is as soon as possible. The time commitment will vary depending on the needs and stage of the specific project a volunteer is assigned to support. Some flexibility is desirable, and we will work with each volunteer so that assignments align with their availability to the extent possible. We are looking for a minimum commitment of 1-2 years at a commitment level of about 2 hours per week on average with considerable variation over time. Projects will be assigned as need arises and all successful candidates may not be immediately engaged.

Applications:
Please send to Corrie Young, [email protected]:

  • Your CV, including your contact information
  • A statement of your motivation in seeking the position and your availability to undertake the role.
  • Two (2) letters of reference – please either include the letters of reference with your application package or have them sent separately to Corrie Young, Associate Executive Director – Projects & Network, [email protected], by the application deadline

 

Deadline: December 8, 2022