UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH PACIFIC MAKING TEACHING CHANGES

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SUVA, Fiji Islands (December 14, 1998 - PACNEWS)---Becoming a multi-modal institution is an appropriate answer to many of the challenges the University of the South Pacific (USP) faces, according to its Vice Chancellor, Esekia Solofa.

He says moving from a dual mode to a multi-modal approach to the provision of teaching and learning services is the way to go in trying to meet the challenges and ease the problems facing the future of higher education in the region.

Solofa told the USP's annual graduation ceremony in Suva on Friday, the implementation of the new model of the university as a multi-modal institution will be given priority.

He says under the new approach USP's students and potential students will no longer see their choice limited to either face-to-face teaching on campuses or distance/extension learning at extension centers.

Instead, he says multi-modal teaching and learning will blur the distinctions and eliminate such strict categorizations, which serve the administrator better than they serve the student.

Solofa says multi-modal teaching means constantly exploring which options can best serve students at each campus or university center.

According to the Vice Chancellor, the USP will strive to make more of the existing courses available through extension, teach more during summer schools, and will build up and develop its capacity in multi-media instructional design and production.

He says the governments of Japan, New Zealand and Australia have agreed to jointly fund a communication system that will provide the university with high quality voice, data and video communication capabilities between any number of campuses and other points on the regional network.

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