Understanding the Impact of War and Crisis on Learning

How can e-Learning help reduce the loss of learning during global emergencies? This year’s OEB Conference looks at the strategies needed. War means displacement and often the loss of learning for those most in need. How might technology and online learning help?

The effects on society from the loss of learning in those countries affected by war is potentially catastrophic. So preventing and reversing it is a global imperative. Anything less threatens civilisation,” points out Astrid Jaeger, OEB Event Director.

The OEB conference in November will assemble a group of experts, including James Maltby from Save the Children and Barbara Moser-Mercer from University of Geneva, to share their experiences and help lead the discussion on strategies to help maintain the process of education in countries affected by conflict.

‘Understanding the Impact of War and Crisis on Learning’ is one of the subthemes at OEB. There are three sessions to attend:

Responding to Educational Crisis

As 2022 drew to a close, over 100 million people worldwide had been displaced by force, with refugees accounting for over 35 million. A significant 70% of these individuals have found refuge in low to middle-income countries, and children and youth constitute more than 40% of this group. Unfortunately, millions are without access to education.

The concepts of Education in Emergencies (EiE) and Higher Education in Emergencies (HEiE) have become crucial components of an all-encompassing humanitarian strategy, gradually incorporating technology into its methodology.

In the session: Responding to Educational Crisis, Barbara Mercer-Moser, Visiting Fellow at the Refugee Studies Centre, University of Nairobi, will focus on strategies for learning in conflict and crisis situations, specifically those employing low-tech and no-tech designs.

This session will take place on Friday, November 24 at 12 pm.

Learning Technology in Crisis: Can Online Training Ever Be Scalable?

This Boardroom Dialogue will discuss the successes and barriers faced in making online training scalable and sustainable in crisis situations. It’s led by James Maltby, Head of Digital Learning, Humanitarian Leadership Academy, Save the Children.

Participants will explore issues faced in contextualising and localising online learning resources, best practices for designing and publishing digital training, and how emerging technologies such as AI and Virtual Reality may support future crisis responses.

This session takes place on day one of the conference, Thursday, November 23.

Learning In Times of War and Crisis

Speakers in this panel will discuss the potential of technology in facilitating access to education for children affected by armed conflicts and crises, specifically in Syria.

They will also cover strategies to motivate students and sustain the learning process during crisis conditions in the Ukraine and the challenges of providing effective education to refugees in conflict-affected African countries, proposing a new training programme in FAIR Data Management to help refugees gain qualifications needed to fit the EU job market.

There are four presentations from a panel of experts:

  • Will Distance Learning Lessen The Negative Impact of War on Refugee Learning Loss in Africa? – Victor Ojakorotuo, Professor, North West University, South Africa
  • Empowering Refugee Integration Through Learning Opportunities and Skill DevelopmentYuliia Kovach, E-Le-learning Sspecialist, Fraunhofer
  • Specific Features of Online Teaching in Ukraine in Times of WarAndrii Holovko, Project Team Member, HNEE
  • An Opportunity for Change: Toward a Learner-Centered Pedagogy in Areas Affected by Armed Conflict. Opportunities Offered by Low Tech ICTs Mirey Alfarah, Educational Developer/Researcher, University of Bergen.

Learning In Times of War and Crisis takes place on the last day of OEB, Friday, Nov 24.

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