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South African research output rises

A recent analysis of South Africa’s scientific performance shows that research outputs rose between 2000 and 2010. During this period South Africa also more than doubled its publication numbers, improved its international publications ranking by two positions, and was ranked 33rd in the world.

These results came from a research paper published by Prof Anastassios Pouris, director of the Intsitute for Technological Innovation at the University of Pretoria, in the South African Journal of Science.

The paper, titled, Science in South Africa: the dawn of a new renaissance? shows an increase in paper publications from 3617 in 2000 to 7468 in 2010.

To read more go to Wilma den Hartigh’s article on BIZCommunity.com by clicking here!

To read more go to Charl Blignaut’s article in City Press by Clicking here!

To read Prof Anastassios Pouris’ paper Click Here!

R15 billion set aside for Further Education and Training Colleges

South African Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande has set aside R15-billion to increase the number of students attending South Africa’s Further Education and Training Colleges. This is part of a plan to improve the quality of education at FET colleges so that they become the tertiary institutions of choice. The plan also includes an agreement with retired accountants to step in as CFOs at these institutions.

Nzimande wants the  FET student population to grow from the current 400 000 to 4 million by 2030.

To read more go to the article on East Coast Radio Newswatch by Clicking Here!

Survey shows an increase in South Africans with formal qualifications

The 2010 General Household Survey recently released by Statistics South Africa shows some very interesting statistics:
  • South Africans with a matric or Grade 12 education increased from 21.5% in 2002 to 26.2% in 2010.
  • Persons with a tertiary qualification also increased from 9.2% in 2002 to 11.2% in 2010.
  • Persons with no formal education decreased from 10.8% (2002) to 7% (2010).
  • Functionally illiterate persons (highest level of education lower than Grade 7) decreased from 27.9% to 19.2%.
  • Provinces with the highest percentages of persons without a formal education were: Limpopo (13.4%), Mpumalanga (11.3%), Northern Cape (10.9%) and North West (10.2%).
Information obtained from I-Net Bridge on Business Report, Click Here!
To read the General Household Survey of 2010, Click Here!
 

South African Education Faculties flooded by students

The calibre of teachers in schools looks set to drastically improve as scores of South Africa’s top students sign up for the teaching profession, writes Prega Govender on Times Live.

Universities across the country confirmed being flooded with applications from first-year students wanting to study the four-year teaching degree.

The University of KwaZulu-Natal’s education faculty, increased its admission requirements after receiving almost 14,000 applications for only 650 places

Increased applications for the teaching degree at other South African institutions include:

  • University of Johannesburg: 2690 applications with 965 enrolled;
  • University of the Witwatersrand: 2800 applications with only 420 enrolled;
  • University of Pretoria: 2625 applications with 1333 enrolled;
  • University of Limpopo: more than 1500 applications for 524 places;
  • North West University: 1851 applications at two of its three campuses for 926 places; and
  • Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University: 1452 applications and only 365 admitted.

The University of Cape Town though does not offer the bachelor of education degree, and Stellenbosch University recorded a drop of 64 in its teacher enrolment from 280 last year to 216 this year.

A very encouraging trend according to Bobby Soobrayan, director -general of Basic Education is that pupils with good matric passes are thinking about teaching, which is ideal “as we want good students to go into teaching”.

To read Prega Govender’s original article that were published on Times Live Click Here!

 

South Africa plans to have 1 million students within 2 years

The South African government wants to see that more than a million students are enrolled at universities across South Africa within 2 years.

Approximately 840 000 students were enrolled at South African universities in 2010 according to Ms Kirti Menon, acting deputy director-general for universities in the Department of Higher Education and Training in a recent meeting with the parliamentary portfolio committee on higher education. The final number should be known soon.

“The South African government is working on the establishment of 2 new tertiary institutions, one in the Northern Cape and one in Mpumalanga” Menon said.

According to Menon the national treasurer also made R5, 1 billion avaible over 3 years for students’ final year studies. These funds will be part of the national bursary scheme, NFSAS.

To read Rajaa Azzakani’s original Afrikaans article in the Beeld newspaper on Nuus24.com Click Here!

A boom in the number of black graduates in South Africa

The number of blacks who received university degrees in South Africa in 2008 increased by 334 % since 1991, compared with a 14 % increase in white graduates for the same period, according to research released by the South African Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR). Most of these degrees, however were being conferred by formerly white institutions.

It was found that most of the degrees awarded in 2008 were done by the University of South Africa (UNISA), making up 12.8 % of the degrees conferred by 23 public universities and universities of technology. The study showed that University of Pretoria awards the most masters and doctorate degrees with 15.8% awarded in 2008. University of Stellenbosch awarded 13% of masters and doctorates in 2008 and University of Cape Town awarded 11.4%.

Marius Roodt, one of the researchers commented that “other universities, especially historically-advantaged institutions, be supported to become centres of excellence in their own right, but not at the cost of already succcesful universities”

To read more go to the Sapa article on Times Live by Clicking Here!

Blade Nzimande calls for expansion of access to tertiary education

Access to formal education and training institutions is constrained and needs to be expanded Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande said recently.

Enrolments at Further Education and Training (FET) colleges in particular needed to increase if South Africa was to come close to meeting the need for mid-level skills and the demand from youth for increased training opportunities

While mindful of the need to maintain and improve the quality of education and training boldness is needed in expanding enrolments, and thus opportunities, while not compromising quality, he said at the National Skills Summit in Pretoria, recently.

This speech follows on the heel of another speech  delivered by him at the FET college summit in Johannesburg, where he called for some amendments and additions in the curriculum of Further Education and Training (FET) colleges to absorb the country’s desolate youth into its workforce and address the high unemployment rate in South Africa.

To read more go to the Sapa article on Times Live by Clicking Here!

OR read the article by Loni Prinsloo in Creamer Media’s Engineering News by Clicking Here!