World’s first ‘AI-based’ online learning programs announced

Updated 28 July 2017

World’s first ‘AI-based’ online learning programs announced

VFS Edu Support Services Pvt. Ltd., the education services arm of VFS Global, has announced a partnership with UK-based Edtech Oxademy Technologies and its subsidiary Oxademy Business School to form a new global digital learning platform “VFS-Oxademy.”
VFS-Oxademy will offer a first-of-its-kind knowledge-driven artificial intelligence (AI) cloud infrastructure called OX360, which identifies each learner’s strengths and weaknesses and generates learning paths based on individual learner’s behavior, personalizing the learning to each individual student.
The new platform is designed to be a response to the limitations of purely online courses, which have suffered from high drop-out rates, due in many cases to the lack of a personalized learning element and the monotony of rote learning.
VFS-Oxademy will provide internationally-accredited post-graduate and executive education programs in full online and “blended” modes — combining online with classroom learning — for students and professionals from across the globe.
OX360 will allow MBA students to undertake a “virtual work placement” with a blue chip organization as part of the final stage of their studies.
This allows students in the Middle East or India to work with a company in the UK via virtual technologies.
Another benefit to students is the lower cost of obtaining an accredited qualification through VFS-Oxademy. For example, the cost of an MBA course under OX360 will be less than one-third of the usual cost.
Syed Shahzad, founder and CEO, Oxademy, said: “We are bringing learning to people instead of people to learning and it is done by embracing the latest technologies available in digital human interaction and by using a huge amount of data. We have developed an innovative platform and programs that enhance the learning at large scale. VFS-Oxademy partnership is leading the way and pushing the boundaries by incorporating features that make use of artificial intelligence, big data, and analytics to evolve the education sector.”
Bernard Martyris, chief of human resources, VFS Global, said: “A high quality education, especially for advanced professional degrees, carries lifelong benefits. A unique feature of the VFS-Oxademy programs is that they can be customised to individual needs of students, irrespective of location or background. We are delighted to partner with Oxademy to offer digital learning programs that make higher education more accessible to students, in a format that offers them all the advantages of getting an international degree from anywhere in the world.


Yesser spurs excellence in digital governance

Updated 13 August 2020

Yesser spurs excellence in digital governance

With the bold Vision 2030 reform blueprint galvanizing all aspects of its digital journey, Saudi Arabia has seen radical changes in the way government entities operate and services are delivered to people over the past few years. Since its establishment in 2005, Saudi Arabia’s electronic government program, Yesser, has been at the forefront of developing robust information and communications technology infrastructure and integrating digital technologies into all areas of administration.

Yesser CEO Ali bin Nasser Al-Asiri said the online platform has enabled government agencies to simplify and improve processes of their operations, increase the quality of services, and deliver services not only in a secure, cost-effective, and sustainable manner but also in accordance with the aspirations of the beneficiaries.

“More importantly, the availability of these systems has made shared government data more easily accessible for all entities and enhanced communication between them. As a result, the decision-making processes have become more effective and efficient,” he said.

The Vision 2030 agenda envisages “an ambitious nation effectively governed.” Working toward realizing this goal, Yesser has focused on providing the latest technical solutions to governmental agencies, programs, and organizations to raise the productivity and efficiency of the public sector. These solutions have revolutionized the system of service development and delivery in the Kingdom’s public sector.

For instance, the Unified National Platform “gov.sa” is a reliable portal for more than 900 government electronic services and includes information on 250 government agencies in the Kingdom, whereas the National Contact Center (Amer) is aimed at facilitating e-government transactions for the public by providing support services and addressing inquiries about 345 services offered by more than 40 government agencies associated with the center. Meanwhile, the Government Service Bus (GSB) facilitates the integration and exchange of shared government data between government agencies for safe and timely online delivery of services.

Yesser’s initiatives were also instrumental in ensuring the continuity of public sector services when various measures taken by the government to curb the spread of COVID-19 posed significant operational challenges. Besides helping activate remote working for government agencies, the entity introduced many initiatives, such as the launch of a guide for telework, benefiting 94 percent of the government agencies in the Kingdom. Yesser also collaborated with various ministries and authorities to facilitate the return of Saudi citizens stranded outside the Kingdom due to border shutdowns and air travel suspension.

Yesser was established by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) in 2005 in conjunction with the Ministry of Finance and the Communication and Information Technology Commission, in response to a royal decree directing MCIT to formulate a plan for providing government services and transactions electronically.