Published on Nov 18, 2014
Education is rightfully occupying the centre stage in all discussions around the world, particularly in emerging markets. Further to that unemployment and skills development has also become a major focus area for most governments in Africa. It's also lead to an important discussion on government's responsibilities and the opportunities for the private sector.
Is enough being done though and how do we fast-track the education agenda on the continent?
Joining CNBC Africa's Bronwyn Nielsen for a discussion is Professor Mark E. Smith, Vice-Chancellor, Lancaster University; Professor David Wood, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, International, Curtin University; Professor Ihron Rensburg, Vice Chancellor and Principal, University of Johannesburg and Dr Max Price, Vice Chancellor and Principal, University of Cape Town.
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Far from the rural backwaters they're often stereotyped as, many African countries are highly developed, and others are rapidly urbanizing. The McKinsey Global Institute estimates that by the year 2030, the 18 largest cities in Africa will have a combined annual purchasing power of $1.3 trillion. By 2016, over half a billion Africans will live in cities, with 65 individual metros having a population of one million or more. Europe has just 36.
The largest is Lagos in Nigeria with a population of over 8 million (some estimates of the full metro area range up to over 20 million), followed by Cairo, Egypt (7.75 million), Kinshasha, DR Congo (6.3 million), Alexandria, Egypt (3.8 million).
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Irene Friesenhahn rounds up sources of online information, highlighting key initiatives on Africa’s higher education
In 1980 UNESCO set up the African Network of Scientific and Technological Institutions (ANSTI), a regional NGO that facilitates collaboration and strengthens capacity for training and research. Since 2005, ANSTI has organised a biannual conference series — the Conference of Vice-Chancellors, Deans of Science Engineering and Technology (COVIDSET) — to discuss strategic issues in science and engineering education. The COVIDSET reports propose action plans for making science, engineering and technology training more relevant to development in Africa. UNESCO’s Education for All Global Monitoring Report identifies effective policy reforms, best practice and emerging challenges and assesses progress towards achieving the ‘Dakar’ Education for All goals, which include increasing the number of students in higher education and linking education to the workplace. Another UNESCO initiative, Education Transforms Lives, promotes education as a development catalyst that increases health and raises the chances of employment. The UNESCO Institute for Statistics provides statistics and data on various aspects of higher education in Sub-Saharan Africa, such as enrolment and mobility, and how graduates are distributed by field. UNESCO provides an up-to-date overview of educational spending in Africa in a spread sheet.
The World Bank has recently launched 19 centres of excellence in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, located at universities in seven countries in West and Central Africa. A separate World Bank programme,Tertiary Education In Africa, focuses on six areas within the higher education sector in Sub-Saharan Africa: sustainable financing; diversification and public-private partnerships; governance and management; quality; labour market relevance and linkages; and regionalisation. The programme website offers publications analysing developments in these areas, including comparisons between different African countries. The World Bank also makes statistics and indicators on tertiary education worldwide available through EdStats. And its Open Knowledge Repository contains the Africa Development Indicators reports, one of the most elaborate series of statistical indicators on Africa’s development status. The repository also offers reports on the status of education, including tertiary education, in various African countries.
The Carnegie Corporation of New York’s Higher Education and Libraries in Africa programme offers financial support and resource access to institutions and projects working to enhance capacity development in Sub-Saharan Africa. It also promotes networks and provides fellowships for scientists and scholars across the continent. The programme focuses on public libraries in South Africa and on excellence in postgraduate training, research and retention of scientists in their home nations (Ghana, South Africa and Uganda). In 2007, the Corporation also launched the Africa Regional Initiative in Science and Education. This aims to strengthen science and engineering research and teaching by supporting university-based networks — helping students access grants and career opportunities and training new faculty or upgrading staff qualifications.
Published on Jan 18, 2014
Innovation Africa 2013, 15-17 October, GICC, Gaborone, Botswana
Organised by AfricanBrains under the patronage of the Botswana Ministry of Education & Skills Development
Panel Discussion - Higher Education in Africa - Collaborative Learning & Research: Chaired by SMART Technologies
Mrs Annemijn Perrin - Special Project Director, SMART Technologies
Hon Dr Joseph Butore - Minister of Higher Education & Scientific Research, Burundi
Ms Trudi van Wyk - Director Career Development & Open Learning, Ministry of Higher Education, South Africa
Prof Oupa Mashile - Executive Director Tuition & Facilitation of Learning, UNISA
Dr Dolf Jordaan - Deputy Director for Education & Innovation, Pretoria University
Dr Gary Brooking - Faculty of Engineering, University of Zimbabwe
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Quality, innovation and the post-2015 agenda
A recent report commissioned by the UK’s Department for International Development reviews literature on how higher education drives development. Several studies have discussed funding challenges and possible future strategies in Sub-Saharan Africa. They include: World Bank reports arguing for more knowledge-intensive growth in Sub-Saharan Africa and comparing financing and policy options across countries; a working paper by Marta Montanini, an expert on African culture and politics; and a book edited by Damtew Teferra, professor in higher education at the University of Kwazulu-Natal in South Africa.
Other studies have focused on quality assurance and internationalisation in African higher education — the growing mobility that follows globalisation as well as international standards, curricula and university rankings, and intercultural perspectives in research and learning. Researchers led by Philip Altbach, director of the Center for International Higher Education at Boston College in the USA, have published a study discussing recent changes that are shaping global higher education. A report by World Bank expert Peter Materu assesses quality assurance in Sub-Saharan Africa, where only one third of all higher education institutions have structured quality assurance mechanisms. Fred Hayward, higher education specialist and former executive vice president of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation in the United States, has presented one of the first studies to map and assess accreditation and audits in African higher education institutions. A 2009 article by James Jowi, from the African Network for Internationalization of Education, analysed the process of internationalisation and the main challenges it poses to higher education in Africa while in the same year Olusole Oyewole, Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University of Agriculture in Abeokuta, Nigeria, discussed the opportunities of internationalizations for African higher education but argued that without regulation it can also threaten quality. In a report commissioned by the Partnership for Higher Education in Africa, Wisdom Tettey, Africa expert and Dean at the University of British Columbia, Canada, compares African countries’ staff recruitment and retention processes and recommends how to deal with staff shortages and growing student enrolments.
Other publications address the link between higher education and innovation. A report on innovation for public health, by the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, explores the link with higher education and argues that higher education institutions are too inflexible to respond to social and economic challenges. A book on agricultural innovation, by Calestous Juma, international development professor at the Harvard Kennedy School, argues that universities play a vital role in building knowledge and stimulating community development in agriculture. For example, Juma points to how industry partnerships that offer entrepreneurship programmes can help graduates create jobs for themselves.
The UN’s eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), agreed by all countries and leading development institutions, aimed to reduce poverty rates, halt the spread of HIV/AIDS and provide universal primary education by 2015. Now the UN is working with governments, civil society and other partners on the post-2015 development agenda. A consultation by UNESCO and Unicef on this agenda showed the importance of adding higher education to the primary and secondary education provisions included in the MDGs. Additional resources on the post-2015 agenda are provided by the UN’s End Poverty website.
Institutional and other resources
Many other articles and more background information is found on magazine websites such as University World News, Times Higher Education and The Chronicle of Higher Education, as well as in academic journals such as The Journal of Higher Education in Africa and the Review of Higher Education in Africa. The Guardian’s development data site holds much country and regional information.
Several universities maintain websites on related topics. Harvard University in the United States has surveyed Sub-Saharan Africa students to help develop recommendations for policies on expanding university access, strengthening university training and retaining graduates. The survey’s web pages contain statistical information on enrolments and drop-out rates, loan programmes, educational costs and employment rates across Africa. News, data and academic and governmental publications are also held online by institutes such as the Africa Research Institute in London, the UK’s Oxford Internet Institute, the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London, the African Studies collection at the London School of Economics and Political Sciences and the Sussex Africa Centre (at the UK’s University of Sussex).
The International Network for Higher Education in Africa, hosted by the Center for International Higher Education at Boston College USA, publishes the Chronicle of African Higher Education, books and other scientific publications reflecting on developments in higher education in Africa. The Center also publishes a blog, Inside Higher Ed, which provides news and opinions on higher education worldwide. The Education Policy and Data Center, a research initiative of the non-profit organisation FHI 360, provides access to education data (at country and subnational level) and profiles of countries and regions. The British Council has fostered knowledge transfer from universities into industries in Nigeria through the Africa Knowledge Transfer Partnerships initiative, introduced in 2007.
The Association for the Development of Education in Africa is a forum for policy dialogue, comprising the 54 ministers of education in Africa and 16 development partners. Its website’s higher education section offers publications addressing the challenges of research and teaching in Africa. South Africa’s Centre for Research on Evaluation, Science and Technology provides regional studies, knowledge resources and publications focusing on science and technology as well as evaluation studies across Africa. The Centre for Higher Education Transformation (CHET) provides open data on higher education performance indicators for South Africa and for eight flagship universities across Sub-Saharan Africa.
Irene Friesenhahn works on the Global Young Academy’s ‘Global State of Young Scientists’ project. She can be contacted firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @GlobalYAcademy
This article is part of the Spotlight on Making higher education work for Africa.
Universities and colleges by country
African American mathematicians, scientists, and inventors have contributed to our nation’s greatness since the time of President George Washington. The African American STEM Leaders Infographic highlights the contributions of just seven of the many African Americans who have changed our world from the 1700s to the present.
Son of a slave, this mathematician was also an astronomer, inventor, and writer. Acclaimed for the almanacs he published between 1792 and 1798, Banneker was appointed by President George Washington to the District of Columbia Commission and helped map out the new national capital. In 1980, the U.S. Postal Service issued a stamp in his honor.
Scientist, inventor, botanist, and chemist, Carver invented over 100 products derived from the peanut. Born into slavery, he became one of the most prominent scientists and inventors of his time. A teacher at the Tuskegee Institute, the agricultural department achieved national renown under his leadership. A monument showing him as a boy was the first national memorial erected in honor of an African American
Academic, social activist, and the first African American woman to receive a PhD in mathematics. Not only a mathematician, Haynes was a distinguished educator, activist for school desegregation, and a fellow of the Association for the Advancement of Science.
This astrophysicist was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame for his contributions to aeronautical engineering. Carruthers patented the “Image Converter,” which detects electromagnetic radiation in short wave lengths. In 1970, his invention recorded the first observation of molecular hydrogen in outer space. In 1972, he invented the first moon-based observatory, which was later used during the Apollo 16 mission. Carruthers received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation in 2013.
This physicist and inventor invented 3D TV. Thomas received a patent in 1980 for inventing an illusion transmitter that extends the idea of television and makes images look three-dimensional. From 1964 to 1995, she worked in a variety of capacities for NASA where she developed real-time computer data systems, conducted large-scale experiments, and managed many operations, projects, and facilities. Thomas’ team spearheaded “Landsat,” the first satellite to send images from space.
The first African American woman to travel in space, she is also a physician, professor, and entrepreneur. Jemison joined the space program after she completed her medical degree, maintained a general practice, and served in the Peace Corps. After working at NASA from 1987 to 1993, Jemison founded The Jemison Group, Inc., which developed a satellite-based telecommunications system to improve health care delivery in developing nations. A professor in the Environmental Studies Program at Dartmouth College, she directed the Jemison Institute for Advancing Technology in Developing Countries.
This astrophysicist, writer, and television personality is bringing a love of science and information about the cosmos into our homes. A writer, Tyson has authored 10 books, and co-wrote and hosted the PBS-NOVA series, Origins. The recipient of eighteen honorary doctorates and the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal, he is executive editor, host, and narrator for Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey. He heads the Hayden Planetarium in New York City and is a research associate of the Department of Astrophysics at the American Museum of Natural History.
Published on Jun 4, 2013
[This video presented by Mike Greer, The Best Free Training website: http://www.bestfreetraining.net ]
This is a video tour of "Alison: A New World of Free Certified Learning." Alison is simply amazing! It provides 500 free courses, 60 million free lessons, over 4 million hours of study, as well as diplomas, certifications, teacher/supervisor tracking tools, and more.
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Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have opened new doors for free online learning that lends itself well to ICT-related subjects. Meanwhile, employers seek candidates with relevant web skills. The Supply and Demand of MOOCs Infographic shows what skills are most in demand and what MOOCs are available that teach those skills, based on the results of a study conducted by the European Commission.
Top skills employers are looking for:
- Web and app design
- Domain-specific skills
- Programming languages
Top skills students want to learn:
- Web design
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Published on Mar 20, 2014
A4RD Pre-PP Event Abraham Sarfo(ATVET Advisor)- NEPAD …
Published in: Education
Linking Education and Employment in Africa
Published on Mar 12, 2012
This is the VOA Special English Education Report, from http://voaspecialenglish.com | http://facebook.com/voalearningenglish
More than six hundred delegates recently met in Burkina Faso to discuss education in Africa. The aim is to find ways to support economic growth by improving education and job training programs.The delegates included education ministers and representatives of civil society, business, labor and youth groups. The meeting, held every three years, is known as the Triennial. Ahlin Byll-Cataria is executive secretary of the Association for the Development of Education in Africa. His group organized the weeklong conference.He says there is a missing link between education and employment in Africa. For example, schools need to improve technical training for students who do not continue to secondary education. Mr. Byll-Cataria says educational programs need to be reshaped to better fit the needs of employers. He says this is already happening in some countries including Tunisia, where the association is based. "For instance, where they have to train engineers, there is a lot of discussion between the schools and the companies in order to know the demands of the company, to take them into account in the curriculum, and even in the management of the schools."In Mali, an association of artisans is working to improve the skills of mechanics, wood workers and tradesmen. That association has also helped workers and companies to win government contracts.Several West African countries are working together to develop a network of trade and vocational schools. The idea is based in part on a successful example developed by Nigeria. Mr. Byll-Cataria says educators are working to connect government-run school systems with other groups that are helping educate students. These include nongovernmental organizations, community literacy centers and faith-based groups. Among these groups are Islamic schools, or madrassas, that are expanding what they teach. Another subject for the conference was peace education. The idea grew out of the violence in Kenya related to elections in two thousand seven. The idea of peace education has since spread to countries including Rwanda, Somalia, Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone and Liberia.New technology offers a way for Africans living elsewhere in the world -- the African diaspora -- to aid development in their home country. For example, a professor could use videoconferencing to teach a class back home. For VOA Special English, I'm Alex Villarreal.(Adapted from a radio program broadcast 16Feb2012)
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