Afghanistan: Technology Consultant

Organization: The Asia Foundation
Country: Afghanistan
Closing date: 31 Dec 2016

The Asia Foundation (the Foundation) is a non-profit, non-governmental organization committed to the development of a peaceful, prosperous, just, and open Asia-Pacific region. Drawing on 60 years of experience, the Foundation supports initiatives to improve governance, law and civil society; women’s empowerment; economic reform and development; sustainable development and the environment; and international relations. The Asia Foundation has offices in 18 countries throughout Asia and is headquartered in San Francisco. In Afghanistan, the Foundation supports four primary themes: Governance and Law, Women’s Empowerment, Education, and Survey/Research and Knowledge Development.

In the Education department, the Foundation through the support of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), is implementing a six year umbrella project titled Strengthening Education in Afghanistan (SEA-II). The goal of SEA-II is to improve institutional capacity, operations, management, and programming of educational institutions and civil society organizations in Afghanistan that implement activities in line with higher and basic education needs of Afghanistan as expressed in the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE) and Ministry of Education (MoE) strategic plans as well as the USAID-Afghanistan strategy.

Scope of Work

An activity in SEA-II is supporting to strengthen the quality of instruction for high school science and math teachers, and in the first phase elected to focus on three underserved provinces: Badakshan, Kandahar, and Khost. The Foundation worked closely with the General Directorate of Science Education and Technology (GDSET), a Directorate within the Ministry of Education (MoE), to provide the capacity development to the teachers and lab technicians of 60 schools in the mentioned three provinces. The first phase of the activity is completed and the Foundation received the approval to continue this very successful activity that will be modified to meet the following four objectives throughout a period of three years:

  1. Sustainability: Developing GDSET centers into Centers of Excellence in eight zones across the country: Central, Central High, North, North East, West, East, South, and South-East;

  2. Scalability: Using technology to scale this high quality instruction of science and math to enable access to all high schools across the country;

  3. Development of Model Science Schools: Transforming the above 60 schools into model schools where the quality of science and math instruction is of high quality; and

  4. Expansion: Expanding to reach an additional 80 schools in four additional underserved provinces;

To that end, the second objective “ Scalability is concerned with the using of technology to scale the science/mathematics quality instructions and trainings and enable the access to high all schools across the country to use the resources of GDSET.

The consultant, under the supervision of the Foundation and Director General of GDSET, will be responsible for developing a strategy and methodology to scale the science/mathematics trainings and materials by using technology. The strategy will be used to develop systems that can offer distance learning to teachers both as courses and point-in-time trainings.

Key Duties and responsibilities

The consultant will be responsible for supporting the objective two and develop a detailed strategy on what are the most effective technical solutions to “broadcast” all of the training materials from the center to the provinces considering the resources that the GDSET has it all provinces. To this end, the consultant, with support from the Foundation and GDSET will conduct the following tasks:

  • Review the GDSET strategic plan and understands the priorities of GDSET in using the technology and how the technology can further support the GDSET to implement its mandate;

  • Conduct a study to see the feasibility of using technology in scaling the GDSET trainings;

  • Conduct a study of GDSET provincial centers and understands its situations that how the technology can work in the provinces;

  • Address the issue of “distance learning” and provide methodologies on how GDSET can commence distance learning to the most rural areas of Afghanistan;

  • Provide recommendations on developing a state of the art web-site for GDSET that will house training modules that can be easily downloaded, Kankor preparation materials, and organizational information and so on;

  • Present a final report detailing methodology, implementation strategy and an estimated cost;

  • Conduct an assessment of two functions in the Mistry of Higher Education and develop a strategy for improving accountability and service deliver. In addition, develop an estimate for the implementation of the strategy;

  • Recommend low cost technological tools and solutions for in-class usage by students in promoting science teaching particularly blended learning; and

  • Develop a package of training to equip teachers with basic competencies in identifying digital resources and integrating them into the classroom instruction to improve students’ science learning;

Required Qualifications and Skills

  1. Master’s in Information Technology, Computer Science or other relevant field;

  2. A minimum of five to seven years of experience in education – technology and related development areas;

  3. Demonstrated experience in development and implementation of distance learning and state-of-the art web-site development;

  4. Excellent written and communication skills in English Pashto / Dari;

  5. Experience in working in Afghanistan’s government and particularly with the Ministry of Communication and IT is preferred;

  6. Excellent interpersonal relationship skills and ability to work with a diverse team people with different backgrounds; and

  7. Able to quickly join the organization.

How to apply:

Qualified applicants are encouraged to submit their resumes with a detailed application letter and contact details, no later than December 31, 2016 to afghanistan.jobs@asiafoundation.org. Please clearly indicate “Technology Consultant” in the subject line. Only short listed candidates will be informed.

Read more here:: ReliefWeb