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Almost R1bn to be spent on SA universities programme

It’s aimed at improving student success, staff development and the implementation of new curricula to better respond to needs of the workplace.

FILE: Minister of Higher Education Naledi Pandor. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Higher Education Minister Naledi Pandor will be setting up a task team to investigate what tertiary institutions are doing in research and teaching to respond to the challenges of the so-called fourth industrial revolution.

Pandor also wants to elevate the status of TVET colleges to make them institutions of first choice for school leavers.

Speaking ahead of her budget vote in Parliament, Pandor said the way knowledge programmes are currently being constructed at the country’s higher education institutions is inadequate.

Almost R1 billion will be spent in this financial year on the University Capacity Development Programme at all 26 universities in the country.

It’s aimed at improving student success, staff development and the implementation of new curricula to better respond to needs of the workplace. Pandor says her task team will investigate how responsive tertiary institutions are to emerging technologies.

“I suspect what we will probably find is that we are fairly well invested at the postgraduate level but that there may be a lot more that we should be doing at the undergraduate level.”

Pandor says the curricula of South African tertiary institutions tend to have a single domain focus, while the modern trend is towards trans-disciplinary teaching.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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