Online education Scott Peterson/Getty Images

La educación virtual en el mundo árabe

DUBÁI – La educación es un viejo problema del mundo árabe; el acceso inadecuado a formación de alta calidad contribuye a un creciente déficit de capacidades que deja a muchos jóvenes (incluso graduados) sin empleo ni esperanzas. En una región azotada por el conflicto y el desorden, resolver este problema no será fácil. Pero una modalidad educativa audaz e innovadora puede ayudar a lograrlo.

Ninguna estrategia por sí sola puede garantizar la solución de los desafíos educativos del mundo árabe. En la recientemente creada Fundación Abdulla al-Ghurair para la Educación, con una dotación de 1100 millones de dólares y el mandato de ofrecer becas a los jóvenes árabes para ampliar sus oportunidades, hemos pensado mucho en la eficacia (y eficiencia económica) de las diversas posibilidades. Y hay una que se destaca: la enseñanza virtual.

Los países árabes ya están haciendo grandes avances en la ampliación de la conectividad a Internet. Se calcula que en 2018 el mundo árabe tendrá unos 226 millones de usuarios de Internet, cifra que equivale a más del 55% de la población y es casi 7% más que el promedio mundial. Pero la inmensa mayoría de los jóvenes usan Internet por las redes sociales, no por motivos económicos o educativos. Eso implica perderse una gran oportunidad, especialmente en vista de los avances que se han hecho en mejorar la eficacia y el atractivo de la educación virtual.

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