Status and Functioning of Distance Education in Bhutan: An Evaluative Study
Bhutan is a small, landlocked country in southern Asia, between China and India. Its population is 634,982, and it covers 38,394 square kilometers. It has one of the world's smallest and least developed economies. Agriculture, forestry, and hydroelectric power provide the main sources of income for 90 % of the population. International agencies are currently supporting a number of educational, social, and environmental programs. In 2003, the higher education sector in Bhutan was reorganized through the creation of the Royal University of Bhutan bringing together eight higher education institutes and two teacher education institutions, including the National Institute of Education (NIE) in Samtse, which is in the southern border of Bhutan with India. Recently, the NIE was renamed as Samtse College of Education and the Paro College of Education in the west. The Royal University of Bhutan, founded on 2nd June, 2003 by a royal decree is the national university system of Bhutan. It was established to consolidate the management of tertiary education in Bhutan. It is a decentralized university with 10 constituent colleges spread across the kingdom. The present study focuses the growth and functioning of distance education in Bhutan. (original abstract)
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