Information Session: 30 July 2019

APPETD recently presented this informative workshop, which explored the current status of international courses and qualifications able to be offered in SA, the mechanisms through which this can be accomplished, the potential impact and outcomes of these offerings and international trends in the establishment and implementation of National Qualifications Frameworks. The guest speakers were:

Dr Linda Meyer: Academic Executive – Dean: Institutional Advancement at Boston City Campus & Business College, and formerly held the positions of the Head of Justice College (DoJ&CD); Chief Director: Corporate Services (DoJ&CD); CCMA Commissioner and various other senior and executive management and consulting positions. She is qualified to doctoral level in the fields of business administration, management, leadership, technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship. A solid early career foundation in talent management, labour relations, and strategic management. Further, Dr Meyer is a published author in thirteen countries and a regular media guest and speaker at industry conferences.

Dr Deonita Damons: Head of Occupational Qualifications and Learnerships within the Boston City Campus and Business College Group. She has been active in the occupational education and training sphere spanning more than two decades. Dr Damons is a strong advocate for Recognition of Prior Learning and established Knowledge Quest in 2003 as one of the few RPL Centres. Her Masters and PhD both focused on the implementation of RPL within the dynamic education landscape and to date Knowledge Quest has completed RPL assessment and certification for over 2000 candidates.

Dr Ronel Blom: Director of Consider That, a research consultancy specializing in education and training policy and practice. Prior to this, she was Dean: Research, at The Da Vinci Institute of Technology Management and researcher, policy developer, analyser and critic for more than 16 years. As the Head of the Research Unit at the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) (2001 to 2007), she developed new policies for the emerging education and training system post the 1994 transition from Apartheid to a new democratic dispensation. Dr Blom has also undertaken a number of research studies on behalf of public and private institutions, the latest of which involved the research for, and development of, a national policy for Workplace-based Learning (WPBL). Both her Masters and PhD studies investigated the meaningful implementation of education and training policies in the South African system.

Summary of Discussions

The workshop sought to explore the current status of international courses and qualifications that can be offered in South Africa, the mechanisms that could be used to offer them, and the impact of these offerings in the establishment and implementation of the NQF.

Dr Linda Meyer meticulously outlined the value of international offerings in South Africa. She addressed concerns that are frequently raised by prospective students, such as “Is your college internationally recognised?” or “Is your college internationally accredited?” or “Will my qualification be recognised abroad?” and the implications of such questions. She attested to the fact that almost 65% of children entering Grade 1 this year will, after completing Grade 12, undertake job types that do not exist yet.

She also elaborated on the new DHET policy on internationalisation whereby new colleges may establish campuses outside South Africa provided that they comply with the legislation of that country as well. Public institutions do not have this priviledge.

Dr Meyer further outlined some of the popular global regulators in the UK and USA, and the immense benefit of being affiliated to NARIC. The advantages and disadvantages of international qualifications was also addressed.

Dr Ronel Blom discussed International Trends in the Establishment and Implementation of National Qualifications Frameworks: Implications for People Mobility.

She briefly outlined the history of South Africa’s NQF and the development of the NQF across the world. South Africa’s NQF is seen as one of the first-generation NQF’s, together with that of Scotland, England, New Zealand and Australia. South Africa’s NQF was meant to integrate education and training, redress injustices of the past and improve access and portability. Parity of esteem is also an important aspect where the same qualification at different institutions are valued equally.

Dr Blom also highlighted the characteristics, advantages and disadvantages of emerging NQF’s relating to standardisation, equivalence, portability, coherence and articulation. She also stressed the importance of prioritising the needs of a nation and minimizing bureaucracy, barriers and prescriptiveness.

Dr Deonita Damons from Boston City Campus presented the process that Boston City Campus undertook to obtain accreditation from the British Accreditation Council (BAC). The BAC has 230 providers in 22 countries and has a student base exceeding 300 000 students.

Dr Damons also highlighted the benefits of obtaining international accreditation, and its impact on students and return on investment to the organisation.

APPETD’s Financial Services Advisor, Ms Liza Harmse, addressed attendees about APPETD’s financial services offered and being developed via Mallac, Hearles & Associates. Services include, amongst others, a surety scheme, legal insurance, a group healthcare scheme, a group risk scheme and a group provident fund. Further details can be obtained by contacting her on fin@appetd.org.za.

For details of future upcoming information session workshops, please contact admin@appetd.org.za


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