This activity will strengthen the institutional capacity of microfinance in the Asia-Pacific region by making high-quality microfinance training accessible to a broad range of relevant decision-makers, professionals, and practitioners, as well as increasing the number and country coverage of accredited microfinance trainers in the region.


Microfinance is recognized as an effective development intervention that enhances access to financial services by low-income individuals. The MFTOT Course is jointly sponsored by the Asian Development Bank Institute and the World Bank Tokyo Development Learning Center. The interactive microfinance distance learning course developed by the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) is the core learning material for study. This course has received high ratings from participants and become popular in many countries.

Nine courses have successfully been conducted in the Asia-Pacific region and around the world in previous years. Over 2,300 participants carried out self-study using the interactive e-Learning package, attended videoconference sessions, received online tutoring for 11 assignments, and took part in the final exam. Among participants, a total of 1,137 from 64 countries were accredited to become fully certified trainers of the UNCDF MFDL course. The top 32 graduates who are located in Bangladesh, Cambodia, PRC, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Japan, Kenya, Lao PDR, Malawi, Mongolia, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, PNG, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Uganda, and Vietnam were engaged to work as tutors for the courses.

Since 2007, the course materials (workbook and interactive CD-ROM) have been translated from English into several local languages such as Chinese, Khmer, Lao, Thai, Vietnamese, Mongolian, and Bahasa Indonesia.

The course features a unique, blended approach consisting of:

  • Self-paced study using the Microfinance Distance Learning package developed by UNCDF.
  • Online tutoring and e-discussion. Tutors will assist participants in completing assignments throughout the course and will provide feedback and grading. Online discussions will be moderated by the team leader of tutors.
  • Meeting with international microfinance experts through four videoconference sessions at selected GDLN centers. The videoconference sessions will feature presentations and discussions on current issues and best practices in microfinance. The videoconferences will also be webcast live.
  • Local courses in selected countries will be available during the same time period.


The MFTOT course aims to:

  • strengthening the institutional capacity of microfinance in the Asia-Pacific region by making high-quality training accessible to more decision-makers, professionals, and practitioners; and
  • increase the number and country coverage of accredited microfinance trainers in the Asia and Pacific region and around the world.


  • Improve capacity of microfinance practitioners;
  • Increase number of local instructors/trainers in microfinance. Some of whom will serve as tutors for future MFTOT courses;
  • Strengthen networking among microfinance operators, practitioners, policymakers and experts; and
  • Video lectures by resource speakers, and updated materials for future training use.


This course is aimed primarily at development practitioners, microfinance professionals, policy makers, donor staff, socially responsible investors, students, and others who want to improve their knowledge of best practices in microfinance.

Participants who wish to develop their skills in delivering microfinance training and become fully certified trainers of the UNCDF course can earn accreditation by completing all weekly assignments and the final examination for this course.

How to register

Course registration will start on December 1, 2014. Interested participants should register online through the course webpage on Moodle.


To successfully complete the course, participants should have:

  • English proficiency. Videoconference sessions and the final examination will be conducted in English. For participants who wish to receive the accreditation certificate, English proficiency is crucial.
  • Strong commitment and self-discipline. The course will require between 10-20 hours of self-study per week, depending on the participant's background in microfinance and language proficiency.
  • Support from employer. To ensure that participants can devote enough time to the course activities, we encourage participants to seek endorsement from their employers.

In addition, participants will need:

  • A computer with a 486 processor using Windows 95 or later, a CD-ROM drive, speakers or earphones, monitor of 800x600 resolution and at least 256 colors.
  • An e-mail account.


Tokyo Development Learning Center (TDLC) of the World Bank

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