Solomon Islands is a small state of the Commonwealth consisting of nearly 1,000 islands with a population of about 580,000. It faces significant development and educational challenges and is a major focus of the New Zealand Aid Programme support. The University of the South Pacific has a campus on the Solomon Islands.


School-age Population by Education Level1









Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in Secondary Education
for the school year ending 20121









Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in Tertiary Education1









Percentage of female teachers in 1




Secondary (2015)





1. UNESCO Institute for Statistics Data Centre, retrieved in March 2020


Literacy rate (1999)1




Adult (15+) literacy rate


Adult (15+) literacy rate



Economic Activity (2010)1




Adult (15+) economic activity


Adult (15+) economic activity



Political Decision Making (2014)1


Proportion of seats held by women in national parliament



Life expectancy (2012)1









1. COL gender country profile April 2015 


1.1 73.8
Fixed-telephone subscriptions per 100 inhabitants1 Mobile-cellular subscriptions per 100 inhabitants1



0.2 17.5
Fixed-broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants1 Mobile-broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants1



7.3 11.9
Households with a computer (%)1 Individuals using the internet (%)1



1. International Telecommunication Union (ITU) ICT Eye Country profile, retrieved in March 2020



COL’s work in Solomon Islands is primarily in the area of tertiary education, through the Virtual University for Small States of the Commonwealth. The work includes promoting open educational resources (OER) policy development and course design, as well as identifying innovations to support teaching and learning in both formal and informal education settings.

Pacific Centre for Flexible and Open Learning for Development

  • COL and the University of the South Pacific work collaboratively in supporting the Pacific Centre for Flexible and Open Learning for Development (PACFOLD), a regional centre for capacity building in open and distance learning (ODL) in the Pacific. The centre’s priorities include: advocacy and capacity building for flexible and open learning for sustainable development; the development of regional and national policies on open, distance and flexible learning; and research on flexible and open learning.
  • In 2017, COL and the University of Seychelles launched a new MOOC titled “Understanding the Blue Economy,” which was developed through VUSSC. The course will be of particular interest to small island states and was made available to learners globally.
  • Another recent MOOC, on Climate Change and Pacific Islands, attracted more than 1,500 learners. It was offered by COL in partnership with USP and UNESCO. Approximately 70 per cent of the participants were from countries in the Pacific.

Learn more about the Pacific Centre for Open and Flexible Learning for Development.

Technology-Enabled Learning

  • In 2017, seven teachers from Solomon Islands participated in COL’s TEL MOOC course and the Pacific regional workshop on OER course design for technical and vocational skills development was held in Suva, Fiji.
  • COL’s Adviser: OER conducted the workshop, which covered: instructional video production for online courses and MOOCs; using free and open source software to repurpose various types of OER media formats; and understanding the Moodle learning management system through MoodleCloud.
  • Also in 2017, staff from the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development and Tuvaruhu TVET School in Solomon Islands, participated in a workshop on OER integration in technical and vocational education and training.

Learn more about the Technology-Enabled Learning initiative.

Virtual University for Small States of the Commonwealth

  • Solomon Islands continues to be a member of the Virtual University for Small States of the Commonwealth (VUSSC). Solomon Islands National University (SINU) is now offering a Bachelor in Business Entrepreneurship, one of the most popular programmes developed by VUSSC. The programme, which gives students the choice of three levels — certificate, diploma or degree — is registered on the VUSSC Transnational Qualifications Framework.
  • A training workshop was organised at SINU in 2016. As a result, SINU organised another training session later the same year for all their academic staff, focused on converting conventional materials to open and distance learning (ODL) formats and to OER.

Learn more about the VUSSC initiative.


Partnerships are fundamental to COL’s work. Strategic partnerships allow COL to broaden its reach and engage at global, regional and national levels, while implementation partners support COL’s work in communities and institutions across Commonwealth Member States. Partners include multilateral organisations, regional bodies, national governments, government agencies, foundations, civil society organisations, public and private (not-for-profit) institutions and the private sector.

COL's partners in Solomon Islands include: 

  • Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development
  • Solomon Islands National University