Study: open resources for Afghan teachers

Lauryn Oates

Lauryn Oates, associate faculty member in the School of Humanitarian Studies, recently published a study evaluating Afghan teachers’ use of Open Educational Resources (OER) from a digital library. The article, which she co-authored, investigated whether the resources enhanced teachers’ knowledge and instructional practices. The study used qualitative and quantitative methods to look at the behaviour and practices of 51 secondary teachers or those affiliated with a local teacher training college.

After the Taliban regime ended in 2001, the education system entered a rebirth, the authors write. But challenges remain.

“Most schools do not have libraries or science laboratories, many students go without textbooks, and teachers have little material to help them work through a new curriculum that many struggle to understand,” the authors write.

The study found that while teachers had little understanding of the meaning of OER, when used, they positively impacted teachers’ knowledge and lesson preparation.

Oates teaches Diplomacy, Development and Crisis Management in the Human Security and Peacebuilding Program. Her research interests include education in conflict and post-conflict countries, technology for education and open educational resource materials.