News

bullet point July 2017

Nzimande picks team to drive change at varsities - "Ten-member committee set up to monitor progress at all public tertiary education institutions

"Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande has established a 10-member committee to fast-track transformation in the tertiary sector. Nzimande’s department has been looking to accelerate transformation in universities, including setting clear targets and indicators."...(www.businesslive.co.za)

bullet point June 2017

A collective way for faculty to transform education - "A faculty learning community, or FLC, is a group of faculty members who share a common desire to improve teaching and learning outcomes. To this end, faculty meet on a regular basis (say once or twice a month) to collaborate and share their knowledge and practices on how to become better teachers and how to produce better learning outcomes for students."...(www.universityworldnews.com)

How do globalisation forces affect higher education systems? - "Growing scepticism of internationalisation can be heard in public and political debates on trade, open borders, migration and refugees and also on higher education.

Xenophobia and discrimination against foreign students has long been reported in countries such as Australia, South Africa and Russia. But more recently in the United Kingdom (in relation to Brexit) and in the Netherlands, parties at the extremes of the political spectrum are launching critical questions in parliament on the costs and benefits of international students and worrying about reduced opportunities and access for domestic students (‘Domestic students first’)."...(www.universityworldnews.com)

bullet point April 2017

Max Price adds UCT’s voice to universities’ criticism of Jacob Zuma - "The UCT vice-chancellor has called on all leaders from various sectors to promote constitutional values and act in the best interest of South Africans.

he University of Cape Town (UCT) has joined the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) in adding to the chorus criticising President Jacob Zuma’s government. In a statement on Tuesday‚ UCT’s vice-chancellor, Max Price, said he‚ together with senior leadership of the institution‚ believed that the country’s political system was facing its most serious crisis since 1994."...(www.businesslive.co.za)

High dropout rates – Technology to the rescue? - " With a high proportion of university students in South Africa dropping out before graduation, many in their first year of study, higher education institutions are turning to technology in an attempt to arrest the declining pass rate. But the complex problem may need a more radical approach."...(http://www.universityworldnews.com)

bullet point March 2017

Is higher education for the public good? - " There is no South African academic who has not been intensely engaged over the events of the past year – the protests around #RhodesMustFall through to #FeesMustFall – in trying to think about and understand these unprecedented and fast changing events – they have affected and challenged us all deeply."...(http://www.universityworldnews.com)

Revolutionising the global knowledge society - " A revolution can be defined as a fundamental change to the status quo that occurs in a relatively short timeframe. Revolutions of all types (political, economic, social, technological) have occurred numerous times throughout human history. Although the seeds of revolutions are usually planted over many years, they typically do not reach full fruition until triggered by a momentous innovation, event or other actions"...(http://www.universityworldnews.com)

Universities must find a way to challenge populism - " Higher education needs a new focus based on democratic and global citizenship, according to Fernando Reimers, professor of international education at Harvard University, who eruditely and passionately defended the values of freedom and equality against the rise of populism, in a keynote speech at the co-hosted WISE – World Innovation Summit for Education – and Santander forum in Madrid, Spain, on Tuesday."...(http://www.universityworldnews.com)

bullet point October 2016

40 NMMU students arrested in 3 days - " Forty students have been arrested during clashes with police since the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) announced it was reopening its doors on Monday.The university said it would reopen its doors on Monday for lecturers and staff, in preparation for classes to resume on Tuesday morning.It obtained a court order prohibiting students from preventing"...(www.news24.com)

bullet point September 2016

Under-funding, not protests, is driving South African universities down global rankings - "The most widely respected world university rankings have all recently published their latest results. The release of the Times Higher Education 2016-17 and Quacquarelli Symonds 2016-17 rankings have coincided with a resurgence in protests at many of South Africa’s universities. Most of South Africa’s universities have dropped down these ranking tables"...(www.theconversation.com)

How PhD graduates are battling to break into academia - "Johannesburg - Academics staying in their university positions beyond retirement are good for mentoring younger scholars, but are hogging positions newly qualified researchers need to break into the higher education teaching and research space.

As universities try to strike a balance between making the most of their seasoned academics and “growing green shoots”, doctoral graduates are lamenting the lack of available academic positions."...(www.iol.co.za)

bullet point July 2016

Beat it, impact factor! Publishing elite turns against controversial metric -"Senior staff at leading journals want to end inappropriate use of the measure.
The tide is turning against the impact factor —one of publishing’s most contentious metrics — and its outsized impact on science. Calculated by various companies and promoted by publishers, journal impact factors (JIFs) are a measure of the average number of citations that articles published by a journal in the previous two years have received in the current year."...(www.nature.com)

Decolonisation involves more than simply turning back the clock -"South Africans have been appalled during 2016 by images of graduates “begging” for jobs at traffic lights. Their pleas are a stark depiction of the country’s grave youth unemployment crisis. This, and the broader economic crunch, has probably at least partly driven the student protests that began in early 2015. During their protests students have raised critical questions about the structural causes of growing inequalities"...(www.theconversation.com)

Global academic collaboration: a new form of colonisation? -"Higher education in Africa is as old as the pyramids in Egypt. But the continent’s ancient institutions have long disappeared. The type of higher education that’s delivered in Africa today, from curriculum to degree structure and the languages of instruction, is rooted in colonialism. This has led many to question whether African universities are still suffering from a sort of colonisation – of the mind"...(https://theconversation.com/global-academic-collaboration-a-new-form-of-colonisation-61382)

Pressure to publish is choking the academic profession -"The southern hemisphere’s cold weather is a certain signal that winter conference season is upon us. In the coming weeks academics – from many disciplines – will be spending freezing nights in student dorms and days exchanging disciplinary gossip on the plight of the universities and on what is new in their chosen field."...(http://bit.ly/29E2cJQ)

bullet point June 2016

Professor and postgraduates do UKZN and South Africa proud at world building congress -"Professor Haupt and three of his cohort of postgraduate students recently attended World Building Congress 2016 (CIB16) under the auspices of the International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction (CIB) held in Tampere, Finland. Apart from Prof Haupt being involved with CIB Board activities in his capacity as Regional Director: CIB Sub-Saharan Africa during the CIB16, the students presented four rigorously reviewed papers, titled"...(read more)

University of Johannesburg’s Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment . The first in South Africa to roll out Accredited BEngTech Qualifications -"In 2017, in line with the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET), Council of Higher Education’s (CHE) new Higher Education Quality Sub-Framework (HEQSF), and Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) guidance, the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment (FEBE) at University of Johannesburg will roll out its approved three year BEngTech and Built Environment Bachelors qualifications"...(read more)

bullet point May 2016

Universities SA condemns incidents of arson at public universities -"Universities South Africa (USAf), the representative association of the 26 public universities in South Africa, condemns with the utmost contempt the rampant arson attacks being perpetrated at our universities in the past week. The attempted burning of the Council Chamber at Rhodes University; the actual burning of a residential building at the Vaal University of Technology and the burning of the main auditorium at the University of Johannesburg are the latest cases in point.."...(read more)

bullet point April 2016

Can UCT be allowed to die? -"Watching the ruin of UKZN under the Vice Chancellorship of William Makgoba was a dismal business. Early on certain departments and faculties were slated for cuts. At the same time a series of “affirmative” appointments and promotions took place which gave administrative power to some people who were devoid of administrative ability and, often, with little real sympathy or understanding of the academic world."...(http://www.politicsweb.co.za/opinion/can-uct-be-allowed-to-die)

bullet point March 2016

How education theory could be used to help shape genuine democracy -"Come 1994, many South Africans assumed that the official end of apartheid meant “job done – we are a democracy.” But despite an excellent constitution and world-class public institutions, the country looks increasingly dysfunctional."...(www.theconversation.com, http://bit.ly/21FVPX1, (pdf . 295 KB)

bullet point January 2016

Quality, free university education is necessary – and possible -"There have been some disquieting contributions to the debate about South Africans' right to access quality public university education. Some suggest that it is unsustainable. Such people insist that fee payments are unavoidable. Making free, quality university education available to all would impose a greater burden on the economy, and will only benefit students who can already afford to pay, we are told"...(www.theconversation.com, http://bit.ly/1L1bqc2, (pdf . 295 KB)

Events

bullet point July 2008

ASOCSA Presidential Address - For the period 02 Jyly 2007 to 02 July 2008 - (pdf, 44KB)