The Speaker of Parliament, Ms Anita Among, has urged institutions of higher learning to integrate more practical courses that will equip learners with vocational skills, which will make them self-reliant and proactive.
Ms Among blamed the high unemployment rate in the country on the current education system that emphasises theory, instead of practicals, noting that many graduates lack employable practical skills.
“They are not practical enough to turn local resources into gainful work. I implore universities and tertiary institutions to incorporate practical courses in their curriculum so that we see more of job creators than job seekers,’’ Ms Among said.
She made the remarks yesterday while meeting Victoria University top officials led by the Vice Chancellor, Prof Lawrence Muganga, at her office at Parliament.
Prof Muganga and his team proposed to Parliament on ways of improving the country’s education system through introducing technology-driven learning.
According to Prof Muganga, MPs can deliberate on policies that can spearhead transformation in higher institutions across the country.
“The world is undergoing a period of unprecedented change occasioned by the advancement in technology. It is upon this background that we introduced a unique e-learning method at Victoria University to cope with the trend,’’ he said.
“We call upon Parliament to support our push for a review of the higher education curriculum to emphasise digital literacy,’’ the Vice Chancellor added. Prof Muganga also said all institutions of learning should be driven to practical based education so as to instil the required competencies in learners.
Currently, the Ministry of Education is pushing for vocational skills development and comprehensive science practical lessons at secondary school level.
According to statistics from the Uganda Bureau of Statistics and Uganda Investment Authority, of the more than 400,000 young Ugandans who enter the labour market each year, only about 113,000 are absorbed in formal employment, leaving the rest to forage for jobs in the informal sector. Ms Among also lauded Victoria University for its initiative to support exceptional, but underprivileged students to have a decent chance of higher learning through offering bursary schemes.
Prof Muganga appreciated the Speaker for exhibiting excellence and commitment to the serve the country within a short period of time since her election to Parliament.