1 University of British Columbia (CANADA)
2 Universidad Autónoma de Baja California (MEXICO)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2011 Proceedings
Publication year: 2011
Pages: 2155-2164
ISBN: 978-84-615-3324-4
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 14-16 November, 2011
Location: Madrid, Spain
Social and economic changes involved in today´s global and sustainable development have led higher education to confront new challenges in the fields of scientific knowledge and technological development, in order to respond adequately to the high requirements for competitiveness, productivity and mobility in the current labour markets. In this sense, the traditional educational models have shown a limited efficiency on contributing to innovation, inclusiveness of open economies and recognition of international and/or global communities. Within this scenario, the evolution of higher education is currently characterized by three major guidelines: 1) globalization, 2) the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and 3) knowledge as a fundamental element for productivity.

Related to the above, international institutions such as UNESCO (1995,1998), World Bank (1996), and OECD (2005), have acknowledged the imminent needs for strengthening higher education processes through an integrative use of ICTs with an educational role and the development of strategic policies that can contribute to the integration of knowledge based societies worldwide. In an effort to provide and enable a higher education that meets the above, the increased use of technology in support of new education methods is recommended, as ICTs have proven to enable teaching and learning from anywhere and at anytime, open access to knowledge and foster collaboration.

In Mexico, the integration of ICTs to the higher education system is officially recognized by authorities in the national legal and educational frameworks. However, a breach exists between theory and reality in practice as higher education still faces challenges that may deprive society to benefit from educational technology, namely: access to education, educational equity and quality coverage. In an effort to respond to these issues, the Secretariat of Public Education, through the Education Sector Program 2007-2012, widely promotes the development and use of technologies and modernization of educational infrastructure to increment access to learning, broaden skills for life and encourage broad international collaboration on education and research.

The objective of this paper is to present the results of a comparative analysis of international and national policies and regulations for ICTs in higher education. This study was developed in an aim to contribute to the understanding and critical reflection of the vision and outcomes achieved on the process of integration of ICTs and higher education in Mexico, based on the experience of the Autonomous University of Baja California (UABC). The document elaborates on three major aspects: 1. A comparative study on the agreements among international organisms regarding the topics of higher education and ICTs, 2) policy issues addressed through strategic actions for an integration of higher education and ICTs in Mexico and 3) results and critical vision of the incorporation process of ICTs in UABC educative programs.
Information and communication technology, Higher Education, knowledge based society.