Pakistan has over 25 million out of school children and the number is growing every year. For Pakistan to become a progressive forward-looking society with opportunities for its youth, innovative thinking is needed to educate children at low cost on a large scale. With the world experimenting with e-learning and m-learning based models, innovative use of technology may offer a way to help children learn better and acquire critical thinking skills. Technology can also better prepare existing teachers to be more effective in classrooms.
Ilm Apps Challenge is an effort to do exactly that. Pakistan Innovation Foundation (PIF) recently joined hands with Department of International Development (DFID) to launch the Ilm App Challenge. It is a planned series of interventions aimed at creating platforms for e-learning/mobile learning as well as local content aimed at improving the quality and reach of school (K-12) education in Pakistan. This open innovation challenge aims to inspire, motivate and train developers and designers (as well as other key stakeholders in the broader education eco-system). Assisting them to create mobile and web applications aimed at addressing Pakistan’s Education Emergency.
The deadline for applying and submitting EOIs just closed yesterday. While the subsequent rounds of the competition will initiate from the 19th of May. Here is the timeline for the Ilm App Challenge:
- May 19-23: Brainstorming Sessions for Ilm Apps Challenge
- May 24-31: Challenge Design and Jury Selection
- June 13-29: Ilm Apps Hackathons
- July: Learning Innovation Bootcamps
- August: Winners of Ilm Apps
Using technology to address the huge education issue, this sounds promising and it’s about time somebody took such an initiative! If the Ilm Challenge becomes successful in creating a community of educators, education institution administrators, software developers, technologists, designers, and education psychologists to suggest innovative solutions, the country might actually witness a considerable progress in the eduction scene soon. We’ll probably be keeping an eye on these events. Keep tuned in to TechJuice to get more updates on the Ilm App Challenge!