Improving education through a peer-to-peer micro-tutorship.
We are a team of university students from Zimbabwe and Italy. Charmaine from National University of Science and Technology, Kudakwashe from Harare Institute of Technology, Isaac from University of Zimbabwe and Valentina from University of Geneva.
Together we are team PeerEd!
We are addressing the low passing rates in secondary schools that use the Cambridge system. Our solution is a peer-to-peer micro tutorship where students who understand some concepts can help students who do not.
We are designing a mobile application but we are open to associate with an existing platform who share our objectives and values.
The prototype will take place first in Zimbabwe, beginning from Harare and then spread all over the world.
We have analysed some existing online tutorship platforms including:
The key takeaways from these platforms are:
Why we do not want to use their methodology?
How do we ensure Quality of the answers?
Chronic shortage of teachers creates gaps in knowledge of students.
The pass rate is particularly low compared to other countries (in the region and more generally in the world).
We noticed an increase in the access to internet and mobile phones.
The problem we aim to solve is the low passing rate (32.8%) from "O" level to "A" level in the Cambridge and ZIMSEC system. Zimbabwe is a very examination based country, meaning that without the A level examination students will not be eligible for scholarships and pursue their studies at university or even find a work.
This problem is caused by high student to teacher ratio (60:1). Since the private lessons are costly, we believe that there is a need for free specific assistance.
Why micro-tutorship? There is a need for specific and specialised.
There are maybe students that understand certain subjects but they do not know how to pass the exam.
Takeaway from Geneva:
Based on our research we are hoping to increase the passing rate by 5%, which corresponds to around 4200 students in Zimbabwe's secondary schools.
Due to the ambitious numbers, we will test our prototype in schools in Harare. After 6 months to crate the application we will test it during one year and a half with possibility of iteration.
We will test the marks of the students before and after using the application.
Here you can find a slide about our business plan.
1. Initial funding: Potraz (postal & telecommunication regulatory authority) accorded to provide the initial support to develop the prototype.
2. Visibility & networking: we want to thank ITU and UNESCO who organised the WSIS conference in April 2019 in Geneva for the visibility that they provide to our project. Indeed, we were selected to the SDG Summer School from the GTI always in Geneva.
Thanks to the summer school, we spoke with two members of UNICEF, who advise us to go through local NGOS. Also, we had a meeting with Concept Foundation (same building as the summer school - Innovation Park). They agreed on giving us the contact of the Youth Ambassador for Innovation and Sustainability in Zimbabwe.
3. Sustainability: to make our application sustainable we hope in a partnership with Telecel (telecommunications network service providers in Zimbabwe) Thanks to commission based advertisements we plan to link students to private tutors or universities through our application.