Research & Innovation Week 2019

ODeL in the Global South: Documenting the African Experience

Demand for higher education by far outstrips supply in Africa and it is becoming increasingly evident that open and distance e-learning (ODeL) has real potential to bridge the gap, in fact, ODeL is increasingly seen as the only solution available currently, that can bridge the gap. Before ODeL can be vaunted or even adopted as the solution to the Continent’s higher education needs, however, there are some obstacles to be navigated.

Chief among these is how ODeL throughput and pass rates can be lifted, how ODeL institutions in Africa can succeed in putting students and their success at the core of everything they do, and how ODeL institutions can ensure that they have the appropriate capacities,  both operational and academic, to provide an efficient and relevant learning experience.  

In keeping with a proud tradition of tackling the really difficult questions, Unisa’s 2019 Research & Innovation Week from 4 to 8 March focuses squarely on the challenges, dilemmas and opportunities for ODeL in Africa.

The chosen theme is “ODeL in the Global South: Documenting the African Experience”, in recognition of the singular ODeL learning curve that is evident globally, but more particularly in developing worlds. While much can be learnt from experienced ODeL scholars in developed countries, there is also much they in turn can learn from the Global South, with its unique developmental needs and conditions.

Unisa’s R&I Week 2019 is just the right platform for this kind of exchange, and a strong line-up of local and international experts have agreed to lend their scholastic weight to the event.

While the Week opens in the Senate Hall at Unisa’s Muckleneuk campus in Pretoria on Monday, 4 March, don’t for a moment imagine this is where all the action will be happening. The university’s eight colleges all have their own programmes planned in support of the ODeL theme. Click here for the full programme.

This year’s R&I Week is the eighth edition of what is arguably Unisa’s most noteworthy research event, and is open to all interested researchers, whether from Unisa or other higher education institutions, science councils and research agencies.

The doors are open and the hosts of R&I Week, the university’s Research, Postgraduate Studies, Innovation and Commercialisation Portfolio, look forward to your participation.

Last modified: 2019/02/13