ItrainOnline is a partnership involving eight organisations with particular experience in capacity building in development contexts. It aims to assist civil society organizations (CSOs) and other development actors in developing countries to confront the challenges posed by new information and communications technologies (ICTs). In seeking to overcome skills gaps in development, it connects people and know-how with the needs of ICT learners and trainers.
ItrainOnline currently has two main thrusts:
The ItrainOnline portal is a gateway to a wealth of online resources to help development and civil society organisations use ICTs effectively
The ItrainOnline Multimedia Training Kit (MMTK) is a collection of workshop kits to help trainers working with telecentres, NGOs, community media organisations and the development sector to present effective training courses on a wide range of ICT and non-ICT topics.
From the learner’s perspective, strong written materials help the learner review and test skills and knowledge acquired during face-to-face training, and offer a starting point for further skills development. It also provides them with materials to share with colleagues, promoting the multiplier effect of the training.
From the trainer’s perspective, a bank of written materials reduces the need to develop training materials from scratch for each training course and topic. It also allows trainers to be more flexible during the training course itself, by quickly slotting in additional topics where needed, or referring learners to handouts rather than presenting full sessions where the time could be used more effectively for another activity.
Making the materials freely available online (in this case, under a Creative Commons licence) extends their reach and increases the return on investment in training. Trainers not directly connected with the project are able to benefit from the expertise and experience of a wider pool of subject experts.
New resources are added regularly in English, Spanish and French and other languages.
In 2006, the site had a monthly average of 60,000 page views. Among the top ten user countries were South Africa, Mexico, Turkey, India, Colombia, Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela and Morocco. Most-used sections related to basic computer skills, open source software, networking and databases, radio, web design and resources for trainers.