Pan-Commonwealth Forum on Open Learning

The Eighth Pan-Commonwealth Forum (PCF8) on Open Learning was co-hosted by the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) and the Open University Malaysia (OUM) from 27-30 November 2016 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Forum brought together the best minds in open and distance learning (ODL) to discuss issues of common interest, exchange ideas and explore best practices.

The theme for PCF8 was "Open, Online and Flexible Learning: The Key to Sustainable Development" and the Forum resulted in the 2016 Kuala Lumpur Declaration.

Read the Kuala Lumpur Declaration

Keynote presentations, open and closing remarks and presented papers can all be found on OAsis, COL's institutional online repository. Archived live-stream videos from PCF8 can be found on COL's YouTube channel. Further information, including the programme book, speaker biographies and Forum-related materials can be found on the conference archive website.


History of the Pan-Commonwealth Forum on Open Learning

Established in 1988, the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) was inspired by the vision that the peoples of the Commonwealth must and can have access to knowledge, regardless of where they live and whether they are rich or poor.  Member governments have given COL a mandate to encourage the development and sharing of open and distance learning knowledge, materials, expertise, technologies and other resources. Working with, and providing services to hundreds of institutions throughout the 52-member Commonwealth, COL is helping to increase the capacities of developing nations to meet the demands for improving access to quality education and training.

COL's Pan-Commonwealth Forum on Open Learning (PCF) is held triennially. It is co-hosted with different partners in different regions of the Commonwealth. The programme is designed to explore applications of open and distance learning in widening educational access, bridging the digital divide and advancing the social and economic development of communities and nations at large. The Forum's focus is on topics relating to developing countries and participation of practitioners from these countries.

COL's Excellence in Distance Education Awards (EDEA) are also presented at the Forum.


Past Forums

Brunei Darussalam


South Africa


New Zealand




United Kingdom