Centre for Distance Learning and Continuing Education (CDLCE) The University established a Centre for Distance Learning and Continuing Education (CDLCE) to provide opportunity for university education to a wide spectrum of working and business people within and outside the University of Abuja's immediate environment. The operational base of the CDLCE since its establishment has been at the complex used as administrative block by the defunct National Open University, Garki, Area 3, Abuja. The facility used as offices is at present too crowded. There is need for expansion to accommodate more senior academic and administrative staff.
Although the Centre has some facility for the contact sessions with students at its permanent site at the Kado Centre, it has also depended on the facilities provided, after due payments, by the Department of Education, Federal Capital Development Authority. The contact venues are spread within Abuja, such as Model Primary School, Asokoro; Government Secondary School, Festival Road, Garki; Primary Schools at Areas 10 and 1, Garki. There are in these centres about one thousand chairs owned by the CDLCE. However, with the movement of the Centre to its permanent site, it is expected that the provision of infrastructure will significantly improve.
The CDLCE enrolled its first set of students in 1992. Basically, the aim of distance education is to increase access to education to a large number of citizens interested in furthering their education with a view to improving themselves educationally and professionally. Unlike the formal system, distance education is designed to democratize and liberalize education to facilitate the pursuit of knowledge without sacrificing one's career. Thus, it enables studies to be combined with work by those that are interested in improving themselves in order to advance in their profession and careers. Indeed, one of the objectives of the system is to make life-long education the hallmark of Nigeria's educational policy. The Centre was therefore established to meet the following specific objectives:
i. Provide university education opportunities for those whom, for one reason or the other, cannot acquire such education through the regular university education system;
ii. Provide opportunities for those, who though have the regular university education, may be interested in acquiring new knowledge and some specialized skills on other areas outside their initial areas of specialization;
iii. Organize occasional seminars and workshops for people in both private and public sectors to enable them keep abreast of developments in their various areas; and
iv. Provide opportunities for life-long education.
The CDLCE has linkages with the following outside bodies:
Commonwealth of Learning Secretariat, Vancouver, Canada
West African Distance Learning Association
Nigerian Distance Education Network
Open University of Tanzania
Open University of London (ufs. British Council, Nigeria)
National Teachers Institute, Kaduna (in pipeline)
Nigerian Inter-University Centres