ICT

An overview of the Directorate.

There had been absence or limited availability and use of relevant ICT infrastructures to facilitate expansion of the MOUAU ICT capabilities as a Centre for ICT Services in the Southeast zone of Nigeria. Consequently, there has been a low ICT literacy rate among teachers, lecturers and ICT technicians as well as lack of ICT literacy programmes for students to facilitate taking full advantages of teaching and learning opportunities offered by ICT. A lack of management capacity systems limits application of Management Information System (MIS) in the running of the University resulting in unacceptable tardiness in the delivery of university administrative services including financial transactions and, release of students’ results and transcripts.
For this University to meet the challenges and opportunities of globalization in higher education, and to foster the provision of relevant and competitive tertiary education in the world and allied disciplines, it must make effective use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) at all levels of its operations.
The Information and Communication Technology Directorate (ICTD) was established in January, 2008 with the goal to pilot the development, evolution and realization of ICT Strategic plan for the University. Staff of the Directorate participate in and represent the University, as apposite, in all vital ICT initiatives embarked on by the University. The Directorate supervises Academic Information and Communication Technologies (AICT), and Administrative Information Systems (AIS), which are the major support units in MOUAU

Vision

The vision is to exploit ICT to its full potential thereby assisting the University in elevating its position to a centre of academic excellence

Mission

Our mission is to integrate ICT in all aspects of Teaching, Learning, Research and Community Development endeavours by providing, coordinating and facilitating the use of ICT in all activities of the university in order to accelerate change.

Additional Information/Core Values

Other objectives include:

  • Objectives

    The MOUAU ICT Directorate is established to meet the following objectives:

  • Planning, developing and managing University-wide ICT infrastructure
  • Developing and/or acquiring relevant applications/Solutions
  • Managing operations and maintenance of ICT resources
  • Training end-users on computer literacy and offering end-user computing support
  • Promoting staff development program to ensure that ICT staff continue to acquire the necessary skills to provide high-quality teaching and learning services and support.
  • Advising and consulting the University Management on the acquisition of ICT resources and related issues
  • Carrying out research and development in ICT in collaboration with the Departments of Computer Science, Computer Engineering and Electrical and Electronics, Library, Information Science as well as other relevant departments.

Facilities/Major Accomplishments

Major tasks accomplished by the ICTD between 2011/12 and 2013/14 were directed to addressing the above listed objectives and are summarised below.

The present administration accelerated the tempo of ICT development in the university by taking off with concluding the Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) arrangement with the AfriHUB/Zinox Consortium and paying the agreed cost of MOUAU ICT Resource Centre buyout at the expiration of the first five years. Subsequent to the buyout, Management increased the tempo of enriching the capability of the ICT Resource Centre. Subsequently, the University embarked on massive reconstruction, rehabilitation and revitalization of the Centre as well as injecting new life into the entire infrastructural development of the ICTD. In so doing the Management:

Furthermore, the Directorate

Again, the Directorate’s development status quo was further uplifted when the University during the period under consideration:

  • Accelerated Development and Maintenance of ICT Infrastructure
  • Restructured and Strengthened the Resource Centre Building 
  • Entirely re-cabled the Resource Centre intranet and internet Network system
  • Created more job opportunities for youths
  • Adopted PPP and Collaborative arrangements to build up the MOUAU infrastructure capacity
  • Established an Agribusiness Studio and
  • Designed and implemented Wi-Fi network expansion to cover the entire MOUAU campus. The networking of all existing colleges, interconnecting the Colleges and Hostels and introduction of broadband network for use both by staff and students is completed.
  • Embarked on entirely re-cabling the entire campus Network. Local Area Network (LAN) is now structured-wired with managed switches (essentially CISCO,). The entire campus is covered with high capacity wireless LAN capable of handling 155Mbps while deploying Optical fibre backbone at the Resource Centre.
  • Created additional or strengthened existing ICT support Centres for ease of campus-wide access
  • Housed most of the ICT infrastructure at the centre and also refurbished and/or installed new gadgets
  • Complemented Electric Power Support to the ICT centres. Presently, installation of Solar power support to all the colleges for effective utilisation of the Interactive Whiteboard system is on-going having successfully test-run the Proof of Concept with the College of Animal Science and Production (CASAP)
  • Not only re-cabled the entire Resource Centre Network but resuscitated the 300 Desktop Computers capacity class rooms/business Centre complex and replaced all the Switches and Modems, which had become week after 6 years of initial installations. These are in addition to initiating maintenance services (e.g. replacement of doors and keys, and air conditioners, sealing boards) at the Resource Centre building itself
  • Procured additional 100 new desktop Computer System units for the ICT Resource Centre
  • Created more job opportunities for youths by absorbing as MOUAU staff, all the qualified and trained staff (14) for the various positions created during the Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) PPP period.
  • By the middle of 2013 the Management upgraded the ICT Resource Centre into a Directorate and subsequently, engaged and posted a Senior Lecturer Computer Scientist as the Acting Director to manage it. The creation of the new Directorate was informed by the need to make the apparently omnibus ICT activities more efficiently manageable.

Partnership and Collaboration for Development (Grants, Awards, Recognitions, and Linkage)

The University adopted Public, Private Partnership (PPP) and Collaborative arrangements in developing the   infrastructure capacity at the MOUAU as well as for refurbishing and/or installing new ICT gadgets during this period. Some of the PPP arrangements are summarised below.
The University developed a framework to encourage collaboration and cooperation with individuals, organisations, including providers of information technology, both administrative and academic who possess financial and/or technical muscles. Consequently, the complementarities of the Pubic Private Partnership (PPP) arrangements we have contracted with the agencies have helped the University to acquire most of the present ICT infrastructure within her asset. Some of the Organisations are: the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigeria Federal Government/World Bank STEP-B in the use of Video Conferencing and Electronic whiteboard in Modern Education Delivery, AfriHUB/ZinoConsortium,Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in provision of Computer systems and related infrastructure, Fidelity Bank Plc. donated 10 sets of multimedia with laptops, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA)in the training of manpower in Computer literacy and deploying seventeen persons capacity internet centre in middle of the Campus, Digital Bridge Institute in the training of teaching and non-teaching staff in the use of ICT and Green Circle Network Africa/Hitachi in the deployment of Interactive Whiteboard system in all the classrooms for teaching and learning.
Presently, because STEP-B has facilitated our installing the relevant infrastructure, we are soliciting IP addresses from local and foreign partners/institutions (Kentucky State University U. S. A;  the Earth Institute, U.S.A; Utah University, U.S.A International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) Ibadan; McGill University Canada; Tennessee State University, USA; National Centre for Remote Sensing (NCRS) Jos and The Centre for Super Conductivity Technologies (TCST), Abuja); with whom we have planned to network. This is in addition to initiating the establishment of link with the National University Commission (NUC), Abuja and the resultant collaboration in the NgREN.

The World Bank assisted STEP-B project facilitated the establishment of a full-fledged ICT in agribusiness studio equipped with Interactive Whiteboards System for training the students in computer applications in all kinds of businesses.

Furthermore, MOUAU is one of the 27 Federal Universities collaborating in the implementation of the USA $10 Million World Bank assisted STEP-B Sponsored Nigeria Research and Education Network (NgREN). This participation will facilitate efficient and effective utilisation of the very limited funding we received from the STEP-B project with which we have been able to setup videoconference system in the University.

NgREN at MOUAU

NgREN is a specialized internet service provider (ISP) dedicated to supporting the ICT needs of the research and education communities within the country.

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NgREN Network Operating Centre at MOUAU

Like other National RENs the NgREN is distinguished by its capacity to support a high-speed backbone network that is providing bandwidth of 155Mbps (and up to 450Mbps (as may be required by individual institutions), and will offer dedicated channels for individual research projects. The NgREN is a place where new Internet protocols (e.g. IPv6 and IP multicast) and architectures (e.g. client/server and cloud computing) will be introduced before deployment within the Public Internet. All infrastructural and operational fundamentals which were built over the last four years, have been put in place in this University and have started operations.

Research Africa Gold Licence for Connecting the Research World)

The Vice-Chancellor ensured that the ICT Directorate acquired Research Africa Gold Licence effective from 1st. of May 2014. Consequently, MOUAU is currently admitted into the Research Africa Community to ensure that Research Professional Africa online platform is accessible to all staff, all faculties and students and other benefits. With this membership we have Institution-wide access across all of the research funding and other benefits. The Platform is updated daily with new opportunities – across all disciplines.

Computerisation of all Offices in the University

The first donation for ICT development in the University came from CBN that facilitated the deployment of desktop computers in all the academic and non-academic departments and units of the University. The University has regularly maintained the necessary security measures for the various applications in all the official computer units of the University, including procurement of, and updating of the relevant Antivirus software.

Services Provided (Other necessary information)

Operationally, the Directorate developed the capacity to provide services such as student administration, registration, e-mail, web browsing, advertising, publications, announcements, networking with various social media e.g. Facebook etc. Included among the services rendered are: use of Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) for marking interview and other examination questions such as checking Post UTME results and MOUAU Identity (ID) Card Production. Other services are bursary, staff and students’ records. Currently we are engaged in reconstruction of our website and addition of comprehensive school/university portal system taking advantage of the NgREN partnership.
The MOUAU Video Conference Centre (Fig. 5.1) has been fortified with already- provided infrastructure procured through the just concluded STEP-B Project on ICT Development at MOUAU. Such infrastructures include: High Speed Multiple Compact Disc Duplicator, Scanners and Digital Presenter. Development of e-learning and e-teaching Platform contingent up on the installation of Videoconferencing System complemented by interactive/electronic classrooms
The Video Conference System is a specialist integrator of audio visual technologies and offers complete solutions from design to installation/support for boardrooms, conference rooms, training centres, schools, universities, control centres, hospitals and other specialised venues.