Learners across Africa are getting smarter with our Free Basics mobile learning

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Image Courtesy of freebasics.com

Image Courtesy of freebasics.com

The Mobile phone is a powerful tool if used the right way. We can only tell you this fact having tested the effectiveness of Mobile tech learning. Learners around Africa, not just Kenya, our first market, are accessing our personalized content.This makes our dream of making 50 million learners across rural Africa smarter an actual reality.

This year, we introduced international content accessible through free basics for learners across Africa. We realized a growing number of learners accessing our English, Math, and Sciences Content designed for learners aged 13-18 years.

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We have a growing number from South Africa, Nigeria, Liberia and Malawi. Other countries are Rwanda, Zambia, Benin and Iraq.

15 year old Lisakhanya Matiso from Eastern Cape, South Africa says our content on Free Basics has helped her improve her grades. “I love Eneza, it made me improve in my Life Sciences test. I got 65%”, she says. “ I would love to get more assistance in Mathematics”, she adds.

Lisa, her nickname, uses her own phone. They are allowed to go with their phones to school, but use books for learning. An obvious fact that exists when teens have phones, is their safety online. Having a dedicated educational portal reduces the risk of minors meeting online predators. Gloria, Lisa’s mom, affirmed that her daughter benefits from Eneza’s content.

Another learner from South Africa is 17-year old Elias Bongani. He also uses Eneza for  Life Sciences. As a grade 10 student, he would like to receive more assistance in mathematics. “I would like you to teach Math on Eneza. I am struggling with it,” he says.

Elias’s friend Lucky also learns on Eneza. I asked Elias if he uses the Ask-A-Teacher feature on the platform. “Yes I do, sometimes”, he answers. Ask-A-Teacher is a chat feature with a teacher.

Ruddy, 12, from North Western South Africa and in grade 7 says, “I study English on Eneza.I would like to have Afrikaans and Mathematics too.”.

Eneza prioritizes content expansion based on requests on Ask-a-Teacher for  a particular subject we are currently not offering. We have over 390 international users asking questions on the service. This number continues to grow at 20% weekly. We’re using Facebook to target more teenagers and understand what content they need in these countries..

A learner from Nigeria wants to get content for his upcoming WAEC (West African Examinations Council) exams. Ghana, where we have a full WAEC content, share the same curriculum with Nigeria and other English-speaking African countries, so we’ll be able to have him take targeted content before he sits his exams later in the year. Other countries covered by the WAEC are Sierra Leone, Gambia and Liberia.

Though our Content targets ages 13-18, there are learners who are older, still accessing it. An example is Drew from Zambia. At 21, he is a third year Student at the Copperbelt University, studying a degree in Computer science. “Put more adult content in the platform”, he recommends. Trying to probe further about specific interests, he tells me that he would prefer Content that targets the youth, “18-21 years”, he says.

This is evidence that learners in Africa know what they need from  our personalized mobile learning platform. Eneza will continue to build content and share our users’ feedback as we gain learners in more geographies. We will continue to give an update of the user experiences as they come. You too can learn on our mobile  platform by simply going to http://mwalimoo.com/m or from Internet.org with selected Facebook telco partners.

Featured image courtesy of Huffington Post

About the author

Juliet Otieno is the Brand and Social Media Lead at Eneza Education. She is trained in journalism and Public Relations and is a blogger who likes to play with words. 

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