University-Level of eLearning in ASEAN
University-Level eLearning in ASEAN

University-Level eLearning in ASEAN

Prof.Dr. Srisakdi Charmonman

Chairman of the Board and CEO
College of Internet Distance Education, Assumption University of Thailand

level, K-12 level, and short-course level. For
The Association of Southeast Asian the university-level eLearning, it may be said
Nations or ASEAN was established in 1967 the United States of America is the most
in Bangkok. The ASEAN region has a advanced with Jones International University
population of about 500 million with a total as the first accredited virtual university, the
area of about 4.5 million square kilometers, University of Phoenix offering eLearning
a combined gross domestic product of over degree programs to the largest number of
US$ 730 billion and a total trade of over students (about 200,000) and Capella
US$ 720 billion. On the ICT-related side, University as the first virtual university to
ASEAN formed a high-level e-ASEAN Task enter NASDAQ stock market (raising US$
Force with two members from each of the ten 70 million in pre-IPO funding and US$ 86
countries, one member from the public sector million in IPO). Other countries are also
and the other from the private sector. The advanced in university-level eLearning. For
author of this paper was appointed the example, Cannada has established the
private sector member from Thailand. Later, Canadian Virtual University. The United
the e-ASEAN Task Force concluded its tasks Kingdom government originally allocated
and the e-ASEAN Business Council was Pound Stering 62 million for the UK e-
established. The author of this paper was University (UKeU) but the project faced
appointed the Chairman of the e-ASEAN serious difficulty in raising private finance
Business Council at the first meeting in and has to be disbanded. However, the
Bangkok in the year 2004. He proposed that universities such as Middlesex continue
to promote development and free flow of eLearning development on their own. In
skilled personnel in ASEAN, eLearning ASEAN, the Universiti Tun Abdul Razak
degree programs should be promoted. He (UNITAR) became the first virtual university
was assigned to survey eLearning degree in the region.
programs in ASEAN and this paper presents
The Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and
the finding for Brunei Darussalam, the General Agreement on Trades in
Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Services (GATS) include “Education”. Peter
Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Drucker predicted that the commercial value
and Vietnam with a recommendation for of eLearning will be greater than that of
cross accreditation.
eCommerce. Therefore, all countries

including those in ASEAN must promote
1. Introduction
It should be emphasized that
This paper presents the existing situation
“eLearning” is “learning” through electronic of eLearning in Higher Education which will
means and the technology of choice is the be referred to as “Hi-Ed eLearning” in each
Internet. A classification of eLearning may and all of the ten countries in ASEAN and a
be based on the level, namely, university recommendation for cross accreditation in
Proceedings of the Second International Conference on eLearning for Knowledge-Based Society, August 4-7, 2005,
Bangkok, Thailand


Srisakdi Charmonman
order to promote development and free flow
The Ministry of Education, Youth and
of skilled personnel.
Sports promotes education for all through

distance education and self-learning.
2. Hi-Ed eLearning in Brunei Darussalam
University of Cambodia (
Universiti Brunei Darussalam, with the offers eLearning and provides free email
web ( shown in Figure 1, accounts with wireless Internet access.
was established in 1985, offering Bachelor’s,

Master’s and Ph.D. degree programs. The 4. Hi-Ed eLearning in Indonesia
university has developed several eLearning
Many universities in Indonesia provide
projects to support the existing classroom-
eLearning. The first example is Indonesian
based programs and is in the process of Open Learning University with the web
establishing eLearning degree programs.
( as shown in Figure 3. There
are eLearning platforms available such as
calendar, forum, online tutorial, chat, and

Figure 1. Universiti Brunei Darussalam

3. Hi-Ed eLearning in Cambodia
Cambodia started university-level

eLearning in 2004. The National Institute Figure 3. Indonesian Open Learning
of Business with the web ( University
as shown in Figure 2 was supported by Japan

Overseas Development Corporation (JODC)
Another example is Trisakti University
to provide eLearning Bachelor’s and ( which has already
Master’s degrees in many fields such as offered Master of Management in eLearning
Accounting and Finance, Sales and mode and in the process of preparation of
Marketing and Business Management.
other eLearning degree programs such as
Bachelor of Management, Bachelor of IT,
Master of Accountancy, Master of Industry
Technology and Ph.D. in Economics.

5. Hi-Ed eLearning in Laos
In the year 1995, ten higher-learning
institutions in Laos were integrated into the
National University of Laos with the web
( shown in Figure 4. In
August 2004, with the support of Kobe

Figure 2. The National Institute of University in Japan and Japan International
Corporation Agency (JICA), it organized
Special Issue of the International Journal of The Computer, the Internet and Management


University-Level eLearning in ASEAN

lectures on the topic of “International
The second virtual university in
Economics” which were given in Kobe and Malaysia is the Multimedia University
attended in interactive mode by 120 students ( which was established
in Vientiane.
in 1999. It offers two accredited eLearning

degrees programs, namely, Bachelor of
Management, and Bachelor of Business
Adminitration in Human Resorce
Management. MMU is planning to offer
three more degree programs which are
Bachelor of e-Business, Bachelor of
Information Technology, and Master of
Business Administration.
The third example of Malaysian
universities offering eLearning is the
University Technology MARA

( which was established
Figure 4. National University of Laos
in 1956. In the year 2005, it provides 3

satellite campuses, 12 branch campuses, 6
6. Hi-Ed eLearning in Malaysia
city campuses and 25 franchise colleges
Many universities in Malaysia have which included eLearning students in the
been offering university-level eLearning faculty of Business Management and faculty
degree programs. The first is Universiti Tun of Information Studies.
Abdul Razak (UNITAR) with the web
The forth example in Malaysia is the
( as shown in Figure 5. Universiti Putra Malaysia
UNITAR was established in 1997 as the first ( which was established
virtual or eLearning university in ASEAN. in 1931. It provides eLearning with support
Among the accredited degree programs are of Mahirnet ( with
Bachelor of Business Adminitration, online tutorial.
Bachelor of Information System, Bachelor of
The fifth example in Malaysia is the
Management, Master of Business
Open University Malaysia,
Administration, Master of Information and ( which was
Multimedia Tech, and Master of Information established in the year 2000. It provides
Technology and Managent.
degree programs delivered by using Learning

Management System (LMS).

7. Hi-Ed eLearning in Myanmar
Japan’s Minitry of Economy, Trade and
Industry supported the eLearning Center
with the web ( as
shown in Figure 6. It offers preparatory
materials on WBT (eLearning system from
WBT System Ltd. in Ireland) for IT engineer
examination. There is an “MBA Program”
and 180 students have graduated and may
later be expanded in eLearning mode. A
Figure 5. Universiti Tun Abdul Razak
complete eLearning degree program is

expected in 2005.
Proceedings of the Second International Conference on eLearning for Knowledge-Based Society, August 4-7, 2005,
Bangkok, Thailand


Srisakdi Charmonman
9. Hi-Ed eLearning in Singapore
The first example is the National
University of Singapore with the web
( as shown in Figure 8. It is
the oldest university in Singapore. It has 13
faculties with over 30,000 students and a
Center for Instructional Technology (CIT).
The second example is Singapore
Management University ( It
is the first private university which was

founded in the year 2000. There are about
Figure 6. eLearning Center in Myanmar
3,000 students. It offers Bachelor’s Degree

and three Master’s Degree programs.
8. Hi-Ed eLearning in the Philippines
Singapore Management University provides
Several universities in the Philippines “SMUConnect” portal for access to class
have started eLearning degree programs. The lists, lecture plans, discussion forums,
first example is the University of the notifications, examination records, and etc.
Philippines Open University with the web

( as shown in Figure 7. It was

established in 1995. It has 30 learning
centers. Contact can be made by telephone
and email. Online short courses are available
via the website. Complete eLearning degree
programs are under development.

Figure 8. National University of Singapore

10. Hi-Ed eLearning in Thailand

Figure 7. University of the Philippines
There are many universities in Thailand
Open University
providing eLearning courses.

The first example is the College of
The second example is De La Salle Internet Distance Educaiton of
University ( which is a Assumption University with the web
Catholic university founded in 1911. The ( as shown in Figure
Graduate School of Business offers two 9. Assumption Univesity has 20,000 students
modes of online courses. The first mode is from over 55 countries and faculty members
mixed-mode with face-to-face 8 times and from over 35 countries. Assumption
web-based 6 times. The second mode is full University offers 37 Bachelor’s, 30 Master’s
online where there is face-to-face for and 6 Ph.D. degree programs, including 28
orientation only.
IT-related degree programs.
Special Issue of the International Journal of The Computer, the Internet and Management


University-Level eLearning in ASEAN

advanced is a complete eLearning
curriculum of BS in Software Engineering
which will be offered in long distance mode
if and when the Thai government approves
the law to recognize eLearning, expected in

Figure 9. College of Internet Distance
Education of Assumption University

The College of Internet Distance
Education was established on April 25, 2002
with the aim to offer eLearning to 100,000
students per year. The eLearning programs

may be from Assumption University, US and Figure 10. Thailand Cyber University
Canadian universities, UK and European

universities, as well as

The fourth example is Ramkhamhaeng
Asian and Australian universities. Short University (RU) established in 1971 as the
courses will also be offered.
first open university in Thailand. RU has
The College of Internet Distance been offering eLearning courses for students
Education is located at “Srisakdi abroad such as in the US and UK. RU is
Charmonman IT Center (SCIT)”. A TV developing several eLearning curricula.
station at SCIT is expected to start at the end
The fifth example is Sukhothai
of the year 2005. Two “Blended Learning” Thammathirat Open University (STOU)
degree programs are being offered, namely, which is the second open university in
MS in Management and MS in Information Thailand. STOU has been offering eLearning
and Communication Technology.
Ph.D. program from Australia. STOU is also
The second example is Thailand Cyber in the process of developing its own
University (TCU) which was established by eLearning curricula.
the Office of the Commission for Higher

Education with the web ( 11. Hi-Ed eLearning in Vietnam
in Figure 10. TCU has completed 128
There are many projects in eLearning
eLearning courses and will add 331 more by supported by the Ministry of Education and
the end of 2005. Four universities have Training (MoET) of Vietnam with the portal
joined TCU, including Chulalongkorn at An example of
University, Kasetsart University, and eLearning degree in Vietnam is at Can Tho
Naresuan University. Other universities may University with the web (
join and full degree programs may be offered as shown in Figure 11.
The Can Tho University was founded in
The third example is the oldest and the 1966 and offers Bachelor’s, Master’s and
most prestigious university in Thailand, i.e. Ph.D. degree programs. There are over
Chulalongkorn University (CU) which has 15,500 students at the university with an
several eLearning projects. The most additional 14,500 at satellite training centers.
Proceedings of the Second International Conference on eLearning for Knowledge-Based Society, August 4-7, 2005,
Bangkok, Thailand


Srisakdi Charmonman
Some eLearning courses have been References
developed and complete eLearning degree 1)
Can Tho University.
programs are being planned.
2) College of Internet Distance

Educaiton, Assumption University.
De La Salle University.
4) eLearning
Indonesian Open Learning University.
Multimedia University.
National Institute of Business.
Figure 11. Can Tho University
National University of Laos.
Concluding Remarks
National University of Singapore.
All countries in ASEAN are promoting
eLearning but there is a problem with 10) Thailand Cyber University.
accreditation. For example, a degree from
UNITAR of Malaysia which is accredited by 11) Trisakti University.
the government of Malaysia is not accredited
by Thailand. To promote development and 12) Universiti Brunei Darussalam.
free flow of skilled manpower, there should
be cross accreditation of eLearning degrees 13) Universiti Putra Malaysia.
in ASEAN. Two options are proposed. The
first option is for all ASEAN governments to 14) Universiti Terbuka Malaysia.
recognize eLearning degree programs
accredited by any ASEAN government. The 15) Universiti Tun Abdul Razak.
second option is to set up an ASEAN
commission for accreditation of eLearning 16) University of Cambodia.

17) University of the Philippines Open
18) University Technology MARA.

Special Issue of the International Journal of The Computer, the Internet and Management