E-Learning portal Nibras.com launched in beta today, bringing online education to the Arab World with a series of short, accessible tutorial videos in Arabic.
The site, which is supported by Jabbar Internet Group, now boasts over 18 videos that teach business skills in easy 15-20 minute segments that fit into a busy working day, says CEO Ammar Khayyat.
By creating videos that showcase the knowledge of over 20 (and growing) academics and business experts including members of Jordanian consultancy Better Business Team, Nibras.com’s goal is to encourage ongoing education and fill gaps in the existing ecosystem, says Khayyat. "We have a problem in this part of the world with a lack of continuous learning. People do not typically continue to invest in learning, for several reasons- education is expensive, they don’t have a lot of time after they graduate, and there simply aren’t great resources in Arabic.”
In the time a viewer could watch a TED talk, Nibras.com offers drilled-down advice that includes graphics and animations to ensure that users retain information. The courses currently focus on soft skills, will expand in the future to include hard skills like accounting, marketing, and banking.
The site, which is based both in Amman and Dubai, currently targets both men and women in the Gulf countries and the Levant, focusing on the post-university 22-28 year old age bracket, as post-graduates are the most eager to learn and boost their careers, Khayyat says.
Indeed students will have to be motivated to learn, as each course costs around US $15-20. And yet, the total is a fraction of a university education or what an executive workshop would charge. With credit card payment available through Jabbar’s CashU gateway, Nibras.com is designed to democratize the learning process as much as possible.
“When I interact with professionals, I see a gap that is growing year after year between where our youth should be and the reality,” says Khayyat.” Because of accelerating technology, and rapidly improving global standards, the bar is being raised, and the gap is getting bigger everyday. Unless we give our societies tools that motivate people to learn, it will continue to be a problem.”
The solution, says Khayyat, is making education simple. “When you can get a good mix of theory, expertise, and knowledge in 15-20 minutes, on the internet, it’s simply convenient.”