Unit for Open distance Learning-News - Electronic

November 2016

Alumni function in Polokwane

The second Alumni function for this year was held at Bolivia Lodge in Polokwane on Friday, 9 September 2016 at 18:30. It was a cocktail function organized for alumni of the North-West University who had studied through Open Distance Learning (ODL) in the Limpopo province. The purpose of the function was to meet with former NWU students to give them up-to-date information about the developments in the university and information about the NWU’s new strategy. There were seventy alumni and twelve NWU staff members at the function.

The function was addressed by the Vice Chancellor of the NWU, Prof Dan Kgwadi and the Executive Director of the Unit for Open Distance Learning, Prof Manie Spamer. Alumini were afforded the opportunity to ask questions and most of the questions that were asked on open distance learning were effectively answered by Prof Spamer. Attendance of the function was much better when compared to the April function in Durban.

It was also the first ODL-Alumni function for the newly appointed Executive Director: Corporate Communication, Mr Clement Manoko


Besoek aan Teologie se Oopleersentrums in Italie en Portugal

Italië word natuurlik geassosieer met pizzas en pastas – baie sigbaar in die winkeltjies. Napels word beskou as die geboorteplek van die pizza. Naby Napels is Pompei wat in 79nC onder vulkaniese as begrawe is as gevolg van ʼn uitbarsting van Vesuvius. In 1748 is die opgrawings begin en ʼn hele stad is ontdek. Uitgrawings gaan steeds voort. The island of Capri with its blue blue water is about 45km from Naples and is for sure worth a visit. A boat serves as ticket office for access to the famous Blue Grotto. What an experience! Please watch the video and see for yourself. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JcJCh-8FDS4 

Die Fakulteit Teologie het ʼn ooreenkoms met Facoltà Pentecostale di Scienze Religiose vir die opleiding van predikante in Italië. Tot onlangs was hulle in Aversa gestasioneer, maar het pas getrek na hul nuwe tuiste in Bellizzi. Prof Carmine Napolitano (links), die rektor van die kollege en Stefan Bachmann, die administrateur, te siene in hul nuwe biblioteek. A.g.v. moeilike kommunikasie het die Fakulteit Teologie besluit om die ooreenkoms met FPSR te beëindig. Die laaste BTh eerstejaars sal in 2017 ingeneem word.



Visits to Examination cemtres

The key responsibility of the Quality Office at the Unit for Open Distance Learning, North-West University is to:

provide a framework for, create an environment, and implement actions that will ensure sustained improvement and promotion of quality. Managing and implementing quality in the Unit for Open Distance Learning should be considered a continuous process in order to monitor and improve quality.

To achieve this goal the Quality Office staff plan and implement several quality initiatives during the year. One of these important initiatives is to visit examination centres where open distance learning students from North-West University are writing their examinations. These students are writing at 110 examination centres across South Africa. The Quality Office staff plan to visit all the centres in a cycle of three years. During the June and October 2016 examinations 25 examination centres were visited. The purpose of such visits is to ensure that the chief invigilators follow all the prescribed examination regulations and to ensure that the invigilation at all the centres is of a high standard. The following centres were visited during 2016: Ingwavuma; Lusikisiki; Matatiele; Mbazwana; Port Shepstone; Stanger; Vryheid; Alberton; Calvinia; Cradock; Oueenstown; Durban; Estcourt; Groblersdal; Johannesburg; Kenmar; Kokstad; Mabopane; Modimole; Newcastle; Nongoma; Randfontein; Thabazimbi; Ulundi and Vredendal.


The Akanyang centre for teaching

The Akanyang Centre for Teaching, (ACT), is a newly established partnership between the North-West University and the Royal Bafokeng Institute.  
ACT students are registered BEd Foundation Phase students at the North West University’s Unit for Open Distance Learning and ACT has runs a parallel programme that students attend daily.  

A unique aspect of the programme is the partnership between ACT and Lebone II – College of the Royal Bafokeng, our professional learning partner school.  ACT student-teachers participate in an intensive experiential learning programme where they are exposed to professional practice in the classrooms of the College.  Here student-teachers experience model classrooms in practice, led by involved, mentoring classroom teachers.  These observations create an opportunity for students to observe best practice and then engage in reflective discussions about what they have observed.  This encourages students to create a link between newly acquired theoretical knowledge and practical pedagogy.  

The holistic understanding and support of student-teachers is a vital component of both academic performance and personal-professional growth.  Student-teachers are assigned to a ‘tutor group’ and a mentor who monitors academic progress and personal adjustment.  ‘Academic Skills’ and ‘Life Skills’ and Personal Leadership’ modules, as well as, engagement in The President’s Award programme, are designed to address student’s transitional challenges and adjustment to tertiary learning.

Our aim, through the strength of our partnership with North-West University and Lebone College, is to produce a new breed of practically competent professional teachers for our region.


Graduates honoured for diligence acrosss South Africa

Graduation ceremonies were held during September in Potchefstroom, Nelspruit, Polokwane, Durban, East London, Cape Town, Windhoek and Ongwediva during which students from all over the country and Namibia were honoured for their hard work and diligence, and 3 022 degrees and diplomas were conferred.
The Vice-Chancellor of the North-West University, Prof. Dan Kgwadi and the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Frikkie van Niekerk were the speakers at the graduation ceremonies in Polokwane on 10 September and in Durban on 13 September respectively. Other speakers at the various ceremonies were Prof. Rantoa Letšosa (Deputy Vice-Rector: Teaching-learning, NWU Potchefstroom Campus); Prof. Manie Spamer (Executive Director: Unit for Open Distance Learning at NWU) and Prof. Robert Balfour (Dean: Faculty of Education Sciences, NWU Potchefstroom Campus).


North- West University graduation ceremonies Namibia

The Unit for Open Distance Learning in collaboration with Open Learning Group and Business  School  of Excellence staged two graduation ceremonies in Namibia: at Ongwediwa on 27 September 2016,  and in Windhoek ,  on 29 September 2016 .
The following delegates represented the North West University: Prof M Spamer (Executive Director:UODL ), Prof R Letšosa (Vice Rector Teaching-learning), Dr M van Zyl (Director Operations and Administration, UODL), and staff members Messrs J Schutte, A Rabe and J Redelinghuys, Dr D Jagals, Ms Wendy du Plessis and Dr J Fransman.


Afstandsprogramme word toeganklik vir dowe studente

Mnr Pieter Badenhorst (Koördineerder: e-Leerondersteuning, EOAL) het die Nasionale Instituut vir Dowes (NID) besoek en met mnr Deon de Villiers (Uitvoerende Direkteur) en verskeie ander NID-personeel vergader.  Die doel van die besoek was om die moontlikhede te bespreek om sommige programme wat oor afstand aangebied word, toeganklik te maak vir dowe studente. Die tegniese aspekte rondom die toeganklikheid vir dowe studente ten opsigte van die witborduitsendings is hoofsaaklik bespreek. Daar word tans toetse gedoen om verdere moontlikhede te beproef, asook om die Internet-spoed wat benodig word om die projek suksesvol te kan aanbied, vas te stel. Daar is ook ʼn opname gedoen wat dien as ʼn proeflopie om die harde en sagteware wat betrokke is te toets. Die skermskoot hieronder wys ʼn uittreksel uit die opname.

HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING IN SOUTH AFRICA?

  • In 2011, Statistics SA stated that there are 104 738 people who cannot hear at all and 241 734 who have great difficulty hearing in the country. In addition, 3,2% of South Africans indicated that they have a form of hearing loss. That is 1 650 909 people.

IS SIGN LANGUAGE UNIVERSAL?

  • South African Sign Language (SASL) differs from that of America and other countries. Each country develops its own Sign Language which is different to that of other countries. Just like any other language, Sign Language also has dialects. In South Africa, there are different dialects of Sign Language. However, the various groups of Deaf people, do not, in general, experience problems in understanding each other’s dialects.

WHAT CAUSES DEAFNESS?

  • Causes of Deafness include the following:
  • Congenital (from birth) Deafness:
  • Deafness inherited from Deaf or hearing parents
  • Syndromes (e.g. Waardenburg and Usher)

Acquired Deafness:

  • Deafness caused by illnesses (e.g. neonatal jaundice, meningitis, rubella); trauma before, during or after birth, as well as later in life; ototoxic medication.
  • Environmental factors (e.g. accidents, constant high noise levels); illnesses (e.g. otitus media, otosclerosis)

EOAL hou jaarlikse welstandsdag

Welstanddag by die EOAL was weereens gemik op meer as net samesyn en lekker eet. Die boodskap was om ‘n gesonde lewensuitkyk te kweek en ‘n proaktiewe en voorkomende lewenstylbenadering te volg en handhaaf.
Die Gesondheidsorgsentrum van die Potchefstroomkampus het ook op dié dag ‘n diens gelewer by die EOAL. Hierdie sentrum bedien die hele PUK-gemeenskap en alle gesondheidskwessies, van fisies tot sielkundig, akuut tot kronies, word deur 'n toegewyde multidissiplinêre span hanteer. Sr Helène Nel en Sr Liza Doubell het op die dag al die EOAL-personeel se bloeddruk, suiker- en cholesterolvlakke getoets.

 SANBS (South African National Blood Service), het ook spesiaal die Eenheid besoek om diegene wat bereid was om bloed te skenk van hulp te wees. Talle personeel het gehoor gegee aan die beroep en so hul goeie daad vir die dag gedoen. Om bloed te skenk verg slegs ‘n paar minute en daardeur kan jy ‘n verskil maak en tot drie mense se lewens red. Bloed kan net vir ‘n beperkte tyd gebêre word, daarom is gereelde skenkings nodig. ‘n Oproep is op die personeel gedoen om na 56 dae weer bloed te gaan skenk.

Die EOAL was bevoorreg dat die kampusrektor, proffessor Fika Janse van Rensburg, ten spyte van sy besige dagboek tyd ingeruim het om middagete saam met die personeel te geniet. Hy het die EOAL-personeel bedank vir hulle bydrae tot die NWU se beeld. Gedurende die ete is daar op die skerms inspirerende video insetsels vertoon wat mens diep laat nadink het oor die essensie van lewe, terwyl sagte kalmerende musiek in die agtergrond gespeel het.
Die boodskap was duidelik: “ ’n Gesonde liggaam huisves ‘n gesonde gees” en ‘n positiewe uitkyk op die lewe is baie belangrik. ‘n Mens moet elke dag aangryp en in dankbaarheid leef.

 


 

Maart 2016

NADEOSA Conference 13-15 July 2016

The National Association of Distance Education and Open Learning in South Africa (NADEOSA) was established on 2 August 1996 when 58 organisations
committed themselves to promote lifelong learning in South Africa.
The overarching aim of NADEOSA as stated in their constitution is to provide a forum for South African organisations and individuals who are committed to
increasing access to an affordable, cost effective and quality learning environment in which learners are empowered to become self-sufficient members of
society.
The objectives of the association are:
• To facilitate collaboration among distance education and open learning organisations in South Africa.
• To advocate awareness, understanding, and application of distance education and open learning amongst policy makers, practitioners, and learners.
• To promote research and evaluation of distance education and open learning in South Africa.
• To exert influence with regard to adequate policy for distance education.
• To advance the professional interests of distance education practitioners.
• To promote and enhance quality assurance in distance education.

NADEOSA sees itself as being an inclusive, rather than an exclusive association. Any individual or organisation with an interest in open learning principles and
distance education strategies is welcome to join.
Although NADEOSA is primarily an organisational membership body, individuals are encouraged to become involved in NADEOSA, either through their
organisational representation by submitting their details online through the website; or alternatively by becoming individual members.
Currently thirty organisations are members of NADEOSA.


2 Oceans Education Foundation

Die Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer het onlangs ‘n ooreenkoms met die 2 Oceans Education Foundation (2OEF) gesluit vir die opleiding van onderwysers. Die 2OEF
konsentreer op die verskaffing van kwaliteitonderwys in agtergeblewe gemeenskappe, en het reeds ses skole (The Leadership Colleges) gevestig wat uitstekende
werk doen. Die TLC in Manenberg het verlede jaar dertig van die 33 graad 12-onderskeidings in die streek opgelewer. Die teikengroep is hoofsaaklik onderwysers
wat in hierdie skole onderrig gee, en/of in die gemeenskappe betrokke is. Klasse word aangebied by Cape Town Science Centre, wat volledig ingerig is as ‘n
studiesentrum. Dit beteken dat die NWU nou drie studiesentrums in Kaapstad bedryf. Tans is sewentig onderwysers ingeskryf as deel van die ooreenkoms.


UODL visits Australian universities

The Assignment and Examination department at the NWU Unit for Open Distance Learning processed approximately 375 000 paper assignments and
examination scripts in 2015. Several pilot projects have been initiated at UODL involving transition from hand-marking hundreds of thousands of assignments
and examination scripts to utilising electronic on-screen marking, automated marking of multiple choice answers, capturing of assessment results, improving
student experiences and timeous formative feedback to ODL students. These require extensive information gathering initiatives on technology enhanced
assessment possibilities.
Pieter Vermaak, head of the UODL Assignments and Examinations department and Dr Hennie Esterhuizen, manager of UODL e-Learning Support visited the
University of Southern Queensland in Toowoomba and the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia on 23 and 25 February 2016 on an information
gathering mission.


Visit to Royal Bafokeng Institute

The Director of the School of Human and Social Sciences for Education, dr HJ van Vuuren, Programme leader dr A Loubser, Programme coordinator dr I Kok and
ms B Taylor, Quality Adviser from the UODL visited the RBI study centre in Phokeng, Rustenburg on 3 March 2016. About eighty (80) students attended the
whiteboard broadcasting session. The students are accommodated in three large well equipped venues, all fitted with interactive whiteboards. Three modules,
SEFF 111, EDCC 114 and EDCC 115 were broadcast from Potchefstroom. Visually and auditory the broadcast to the centre was clear, all students were able to
see and hear the lecturers. At the end of the three sessions dr Herman van Vuuren conducted a facilitation session to address questions from and provide
students with information. All inquiries about study material were dealt with by ms Taylor as she was linked to the system via WiFi and was also able to handle
all problems immediately. At the end of the sessions the NWU staff met with the RBI centre’s managers and facilitators to discuss aspects regarding future
support to this group of BEd Foundation Phase students.


Werksaamhede in die monitorkamer

Personeel van die EOAL is almal bekend met die witbordesessies vir die onderskeie programme wat gedurende die week, asook naweke vanaf B11A uitgesaai
word. Daar is weekliks min of meer 20 sessies wat plaasvind, waarvan 95 ure se lewendige sessies gemonitor word met soveel ure se opnames wat gekontroleer
en verwerk moet word.
Op Saterdae vind daar meeste van die tyd vier tot vyf gelyktydige sessies plaas. Daar is altyd 'n minimum van twee personeellede tydens die sessies nodig om
hierdie uitsendings te kan behartig. In die kontrolekamer word verskeie funksies verrig om sessies sonder enige onderbreking te laat verloop.
Personeel van die onderskeie fakulteite wat programme gedurende die week aanbied, moet alle Powerpoints wat gebruik word gedurende uitsendings
vroegtydig aan die e-Leer personeel stuur sodat hierdie Powerpoints op "Dropbox" gelaai kan word. Die e-Leer personeel het hierdie Powerpoints ook nodig om
skedulerings te doen vir wanneer die sessies moet plaasvind. Alle sessies word deur middel van "Panopto" opgeneem om sodoende beskikbaar gestel te word
aan studente wat hierdie sessies later wil aflaai vanaf die web.
Sessies wat opgeneem word, word gedurende die week in die kontrolekamer 'ge-edit' sodat dit weer op die EOAL web gelaai kan word vir studente om na te
kyk. Hierdie proses word deur e-Leer hanteer en bestuur.
Personeel monitor hierdie opnames onder andere ook gedurende lewendige sessies. E-leer personeel kyk dan gedurende die sessie of klank en beeld wel reg
opgeneem word. Daar kan tot ses klankbane gelyktydig wees om te monitor.
Alvorens sessies ‘n aanvang neem, op watter dag ookal, is e-Leer personeel reeds 60 minute voor die aanvang van sessies by die ateljees om alle klanktoerusting
en witborde in te stel en op te stel vir sessies. Internet konnektiwiteit asook aflaaispoed van rekenaars word gereeld gedurende sessies gemonitor. Daar moet
ook gedurende sessies geredelik gekyk word of die bediener wat gebruik word (Hertzner) op datum is met 'updates' asook om te monitor dat hierdie bediener
optimaal sal werk gedurende sessies.
Sentrums gebruik WhatsApp asook telefoniese kontak om enige tegniese probleme te rapporteer wat hulle moontlik tydens sessies mag ondervind. Gedurende
die week word op Woensdae asook Vrydae toetssessies gehou met alle sentrums wat moontlike konnektiwiteits probleme mag ondervind. E-Leer personeel help
en assisteer sentrums hiermee.
Gedurende sessies, sou rekenaars of witborde probleme gee, gebruik die e-Leer personeel "Teamviewer" om in te log op rekenaars by studiesentrums om
moontlike tegniese probleme te kan oplos. E-Leer personeel wat aan diens is tydens geskeduleerde sessies monitor ook die heeltyd dat interaktiwiteit reg en
korrek plaasvind, en assisteer ook die aanbieder in die verband gedurende sessies. Sou interaktiwiteit by sekere sentrums nie reg geskied nie sal e-leer personeel
die betrokke sentrums kontak en help om die probleem uit te sorteer. E-Leer personeel monitor ook 'n sisteem van IT "Syntrex" wat alarms laat afgaan wanneer
sentrums se Internet afgaan. E-leer personeel assisteer dan hierdie sentrums om op hulle rugsteun Internet oor te gaan.

Alle probleme wat tydens sessies ondervind word, word opgeskryf en aksies in plek gestel om hierdie probleme wat ondervind is tydens sekere sessies op te los
voor die volgende sessies in aanvang neem. IT-logs word ook gedoen vanaf die kontrolekamer tydens sessies, asook gedurende die week indien daar tegniese
probleme op ADSL-lyne mag ontstaan.


Julie 2016

Examensentrumbesoeke

Eksamens is en bly ʼn belangrike komponent vir enige tersiêre instelling en dan spesifiek ook vir die Noordwes-Universiteit (NWU) en Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer (EOAL). Die
reël van eksamens vir afstandstudente is ʼn enorme taak omrede eksamensentrums dwarsoor die land beskikbaar moet wees vir studente. Die Open Learning Group (OLG) as
administratiewe samewerker van die NWU, is dan ook gekontrakteer vir die reël van die eksamens vir die meerderheid van NWU se oop afstandsleerstudente.
Tydens die Junie 2016 eksamengeleentheid het OLG 111 eksamensentrums beskibaar gestel en bedryf vir studente in die fakulteite Opvoedingswetenskappe,
Gesondheidswetenskappe en Lettere en Wysbegeerte. Die EOAL organiseer en bedryf egter self sekere sentrums en ʼn verdere 33 eksamensentrums vir Teologie-studente
word so hanteer. Die EOAL het verder ook ʼn spesiale eksamen by drie eksamensentrums vir die BEd KZN-program bedryf waar altesaam 37 studente geskryf het. In totaal is
daar 262 vraestelle by al die eksamensentrums gedurende die tydperk geskryf en ʼn totaal van ± 90 000 antwoordstelle word verwag vir nasien.
As deel van die EOAL se kwaliteitsprosesse word eksamensentrums gereeld deur EOAL-bestuurslede besoek. Die volgende eksamensentrums is tydens die Junie-eksamen
besoek, naamlik: Ulundi, Nongoma, Lusikisiki, Kokstad, Matatiele, Port Shepstone, Durban, Stanger, Mbazwana, Ingwavuma en Randfontein. Die terugvoer van hierdie
besoeke was positief en daar is gevind dat die eksamens goed bedryf word; prosedures is noukeurig gevolg en die sentrums was skoon en netjies.


Collaboration between NWU and ZOU

On 10 March 2016, during the North-West University (NWU)and Zimbabwe Open University (ZOU) signing ceremony in Harare, prof Spamer, on behalf of NWU, and prof
Kurasha, on behalf ZOU, signed the Memorandum of Understanding between the two universities with the purpose to establish a framework within which co-operation may
develop between the two universities. This resulted in a NWU/ZOU collaboration meeting that took place on 26 May 2016 in Harare.
Three deans from NWU, proff Pienaar (Natural Sciences), Van Romburgh (Economic and Management Sciences) and Balfour (Education Sciences), met with deans from ZOU to
further explore opportunities for working together. NWU-ZOU faculty offerings and synergy-points were highlighted by the deans of the two universities.
In discussing the way forward, the meeting agreed that there would be further collaboration concerning the use of facilities between NWU and ZOU. The meeting furthermore
agreed that there would be a one-on-one meeting with the relevant faculty representative. NWU deans had a greeting meeting with the Vice-Chancellor of ZOU, prof Kurasha.
This was followed by one-on-one meetings between the respective NWU and ZOU deans. The respective deans undertook to provide feedback to faculties regarding specific
opportunities and the individuals’ respective contact details.


Andrew Murray-Desmond Tutu prys

Die 2015 publikasie Living with Dignity - African Perspectives on Gender Equality het die 2016 Andrew Murray Desmond-Tutu-prys vir Christelike en teologiese boeke ontvang.
Daar was meer as twintig outeurs van oral in Afrika betrokke by die publikasie om belangrike sake rakende geslagsgelykheid en menswaardigheid vanuit verskillende
perspektiewe toe te lig. Elna Mouton en Len Hansen van die Fakulteit Teologie, Universiteit van Stellenbosch, Gertrude Kapuma van Malawi en Thomas Togom van Kenia het as redakteurs opgetree.
Volgens die beoordelaars maak die publikasie nie net ʼn groot bydrae tot die vorming van Afrika denke oor geslagsgelykheid en menswaardigheid nie, maar baan ook die weg vir toekomstige teologiese en akademiese
samewerking in Afrika.

Petria Theron van die NWU (Fakulteit Teologie en Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer) is een van die mede-outeurs.Die titel van haar bydrae is Cultural perspectives on gender equality: preliminary indicators for the Christian
church in Sub-Saharan Africa. Sy is van mening dat kultuur, al word dit hoe goed bedoel, ʼn struikelblok kanwees in die verwesenliking van geslagsgelykheid. Die gevolg is dat mense, veral vroue, nie hul volle potensiaal
kan bereik nie. Hulle kan ook nie hul inherente menswaardigheid as beelddraers van God, ten volle ervaar nie.In haar bydrae herinner Petria d ie k erk i n s ub-Sahara Afrika aan haar sleutelrol om sosio-kulturele
transformasie tot stand te bring. Volgens haar is die imago Dei konsep en die voorbeeld van Jesus Christus kragtige rigtingwysers in die kerk se stryd om geslagsgelykheid en menswaardigheid vir alles mense te
verseker.


Integration of ICT in Teaching and Learning in the 21st Century

The National Institute for Education (NIE) in partnership with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) of Singapore, and the Commonwealth of Learning (CoL), hosted a workshop
within Centre for Research in Pedagogy and Practice (CRiPP) at the NIE in Singapore 16-20 May 2016.
Thirty three academics from 11 African universities attended this workshop. Proff Robert Balfour, Willie van Vollenhoven and Dr Martin Combrinck represented the NWU.
The joint investment by the CoL and the MFA in Singapore at the National Institute for Education (NIE) is aimed at making a difference in the African context with regard to the
integration of ICT in Teaching and Learning in education. It therefore structured its intervention to steer the change in local context in this domain; subsequently each university
that attended the workshop received the task to develop, from the knowledge and skills achieved at the workshop, a change project for their education system, university or
faculty.
The first session was used to determine a common understanding of the ICT situation in Africa. The second session explored the understanding of affordances of ICT tools in
Africa in terms of pedagogy, social and technical dimensions. The pedagogical affordances depend on the support and implementation of pedagogical approaches.
The discussion then focused on frameworks of ICT integration. Frameworks provide a systematic understanding of various levels of integration and aspects of use. Four models
were discussed. They are the ICT development model, the Substitution Augmentation Modification Redefinition (SAMR) model, five dimensions of meaningful learning with ICT
and Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy. The session ended with a practical session where the tools Padlet and Socrative were demonstrated and used.
Day two continued with the tool Socrative. The session explored in more detail the five-Dimensional model of meaningful learning. The session ended by sharing more ICT tools:
SMILE, Blogs, WebQuests, Screencasting and Interactive whiteboards.
The third day started off with a visit to Evergreen High School in Woodlands to view the level of ICT use and the structures and processes for teacher capacity building in terms of
ICT implementation. The school proved to be an example of technology leadership for ICT infusion. Day four also started with a school visit to Ngee Ann Secondary School in
Tampinesis. The observation had to do with the school’s journey of infusing ICT and changing the culture of learning.
The afternoon session was devoted to discussions about ICT infusion at the two schools visited. It seems that the changing recipe is the development of school leaders as
champions of infusion of ICT in teaching and learning in the 21st century. A case study on future schools was also discussed, as well as Singapore’s master plan to infuse ICT in the
school system.
Conclusion:

  •  School/university leadership is instrumental in creating the socio-cultural enablers and environment for change.
  •  School/university leadership needs to align ICT-mediated innovations with policy directives and make it meaningful for teachers/lecturers.
  •  Partnerships are useful to gather resources, expertise and inject new perspectives to facilitate the innovation-change journey.

The final session looked into the understanding of the evolution of ICT in Singapore and opportunities for Africa.
As Singapore is a small economy with no natural resources, they were forced to prioritize education as this would become critical to their survival and success. Their education
system is characterized by three phases:

Sept 2015

mailSenior offisiere van die SAPD Opleidingseenheid besoek EOAL

mailUODL pays courtesy visit to Gauteng Department of Education

mailSAQA akkreditasie vir onderwysprogramme

mailInternational peer evaluation for UODL

 

Senior offisiere van die SAPD Opleidingseenheid besoek EOAL

Lede van die SAPD se opleidingseenheid het op 3 September 2015 die Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer op uitnodiging van die rektor, prof Herman van Schalkwyk, besoek. Die
polisie-afvaardiging het bestaan uit een vroulike Generaal-Majoor, een Brigadier en die amptelike polisie-veearts. Die uitnodiging het ’n drieledige doel gehad, naamlik:

Eerstens om die SAPD in te lig oor die Vakgroep:
Polisiëringspraktyk se behoefte om uit aard van hulle NWU gemeenskapsbetrokkenheid, betrokke te raak by ‘n SAPD-projek getiteld: SAPS’s Front-Line Service Delivery Awareness Project. Hierdie projek het sy oorsprong uit ‘n doeltreffendheids-opname
wat die SAPD landswyd onder sy polisiestasies gedoen het ten einde hulle vlak van effektiewe dienslewering aan die publiek te evalueer. Uit hierdie evaluering het die SAPD toe die 100 swakste polisiestasies geïdentifiseer. Binne die Noordwes Provinsie is
Wolmaransstad geïdentifiseer as een van die probleempolisiestasies. Die Vakgroep Polisiëringspraktyk het die behoefte uitgespreek om veral dan by Wolmaransstad SAPD betrokke te raak ten einde, deur middel van lesings en kort simposia, hulle vlak van
doeltreffendheid te verhoog. Aspekte wat deur die Vakgroep aangeraak sal word is onder andere: effektiewe dienslewering; die Batho Pele beginsel van die kliënt kom eerste; die hantering en behandeling van aangehoudenes in die polisieselle ingevolge
die beginsels van Menseregte soos vervat in ons Grondwet; sterftes binne polisieselle; hantering van klagtes en insidente wat deur lede van die publiek by die Gemeenskaps-Dienssentrum aangemeld word; polisie-gemeenskapsverhoudinge; en telefoonetiket,—
om maar ‘n paar te noem. 

Die tweede rede vir die uitnodiging was om die Generale Korps in te lig oor die BA in Polisiëringspraktyk, die vordering met studentegetalle, probleemareas wat die afgelope ses maande ervaar is, minimum toelatingsvereistes en die aanbieding van die UNIVPREP in Polisiëringspraktyk wat geleenthede skep vir studente wat nie aan die Fakulteit Lettere en Wysbegeerte se minimum toelatingsvereistes voldoen nie. Verskeie bemarkingsinisiatiewe wat reeds afgehandel is, asook ‘n toekomsblik op beoogde bemarkingsinisiatiewe vir die res van 2015 en 2016, is ook aan die polisielede voorgehou. Lede van die NWU se Eenheid vir Bemarking en Kommunikasie (BEK) is ook tydens hierdie geleentheid aan lede van die SAPD voorgestel.
Laastens is die lede van die SAPD deur dr Hennie Esterhuizen en sy span bekendgestel aan die interaktiewe witbordtegnologie en die moontlikhede wat dit vir die SAPD as
organisasie kan inhou. Die SAPD-lede was geweldig beïndruk met die tegnologie en die aanwendingsmoontlikhede daarvan. Prof Manie Spamer het die moontlikheid om aan die
SAPD Wolmaransstad ‘n interaktiewe witbord te skenk en aldaar vir hulle te installeer voorgestel, wat die SAPD-lede se belangstelling verder geprikkel het. Hulle was so beïndruk met die witbordtegnologie, dat die Generaal wat die span SAPD-lede gelei het, versoek het dat ‘n opvolgvergadering vir 22 September 2015 gereël word ten einde haar senior lede ook aan die tegnologie bekend te stel. Ook die moontlike ondertekening van ‘n Samewerkingsooreenkoms tussen NWU se EOAL en die SAPD se Opleidingseenheid sal
tydens daardie vergadering bespreek en moontlik beklink word.
Die dag se verrigtinge is afgesluit met ‘n interessante en smaakvolle vingerete waarna die SAPD-kontingent die EOAL, vol lofprysing vir die werk wat die hulle doen, verlaat het.
‘n Besondere woord van dank en waardering vir dr Hennie Esterhuizen en sy tegniese span vir hulle aanbieding wat werklik ‘n groot impak op die denke oor en begrip van oop
afstandsleer by die NWU op die SAPD-lede gemaak het. Verder is daar ook nie ‘n beter eg Suid-Afrikaanse manier om sulke geslaagde samesprekings af te sluit as deur middel
van ‘n aangename ete nie. Vele blywende en suksesvolle kontrakte is al in die verlede rondom die etenstafel gesluit.

 


UODL pays courtesy visit to Gauteng Department of Education

The Manager for Liaison at the UODL, Mr Jan B Khumalo, visited the Gauteng Department of Education on 16 March 2015. The visit was part of a series of stakeholders’ visits aimed at introducing and promoting the Unit to stakeholders and potential partners. Several matters relating to the programmes offered by the Unit were discussed during the
meeting. The Deputy Director expressed interest in the various programmes that the Unit offers and indicated that they might enroll bursary students with the Unit in future.

 


SAQA akkreditasie vir onderwysprogramme

Die Fakulteit Opvoedingswetenskappe het SAQA akkreditasie gekry om Januarie 2016 met die Gevorderde Sertifikaat in Onderwys (ACT) in Grondslagfase en Intermediêre Fase asook die BEd in Grondslagfase te begin.

Die aansoeke vir die BEd het reeds 21 Augustus gesluit en die keuringsproses word tans hanteer. Die demografie van die gekeurde studente sal dan gebruik word om sentra te

identifiseer waar die graad aangebied gaan word. Die Fakulteit beoog om volgende jaar 550 studente via OAL vir die graad in te skryf. Die Fakulteit stel dit ook ten doel om 1 500 studente oor die land en Namibië vir die ACT gedurende 2016 in te skryf.


International​ Peer evaluation for UODL

The Unit for Open Distance Learning currently delivers programmes in Education, Nursing Science, Theology and Police Practice. Further programmes in Business Administration and Information Technology will be delivered from 2016. The Unit serves approximately 32 000 students at 66 tuition centres across Southern Africa. Interactive whiteboards are mainly used to broadcast the lectures. The Unit is a specialist unit, and currently has 76 full-time personnel and more than 250 part-time.

To ensure that the Unit as described above functions effectively, it is necessary to have a quality assurance strategy in place. This strategy consists of various quality activities of which internal and external evaluations are important ones. Therefore in 2014 it was decided to undertake an internal self-evaluation of the Unit’s activities based on the quality manual of the unit, whereafter an external evaluation would follow. This internal self-evaluation also formed the basis for the self-evaluation report that was part of the documents prepared for the external evaluation.

The external evaluation was planned for August 2015. The external evaluation panel consisted of international and national experts. The team consisted of Drs Piet Henderikx of the European Association for Distance Learning Universities, Steven Hutchinson of the Open University in the United Kingdom, Santiago Acosta-Aide from Ecuador, Mr Seamus Fox of Dublin City University, Drs Jessica Aguti of Commonwealth Learning, Johan Hendrikz (University of Pretoria), Proff Walter Lumadi (Unisa), Wendy Kilfoil (University of Pretoria) and Daniella Coetzee (University of the Free State). The panel was appointed in collaboration with the quality office of the NWU.

Preparations for the external evaluation already started in 2014. Record management is an important part of such an evaluation and a new record management file plan was constructed and prepared.

A portfolio was compiled with all the relevant documents and sent to the panel members prior to their visit so that they could familiarise themselves with the activities of the Unit. The evaluation took place from 17 August to the 24 August 2015. The panel interviewed all the important role players of the university and the UODL. They visited two tuition centres where they also interviewed students.

Prof Manie Spamer, executive director of the Unit for Open Distance Learning was satisfied with the preliminary findings of the panel, especially with their comment that they were impressed by the functioning and quality of the Unit.


March 2015

mail BA in Openbare Regeerkunde met Polisieringpraktyk

mail UODL NWU Graduation Ceremonies

mail Projekte en kortleerprogramme

mail International peer evaluation

mail NWU to host next ACDE Meeting

mail Embracing Brics oppertunities: Unit for Open Distance Learning


BA in Openbare Regeerkunde met Polisieringpraktyk

Goedkeuring om die nuwe graad in Openbare Regeerkunde met Polisiëringspraktyk te implementeer was gedurende Oktober 2014 van SAQA ontvang met die uitreik van die SAQA Kwalifikasie Identifikasie-nommer. Dit het die universiteit in staat gestel om die graad te implementeer vanaf Januarie 2015.
Aangesien NWU nie toegelaat was om die nuwe kwalifikasie te bemark voordat die SAQA ID nie ontvang was nie, het die bemarking van die graad in alle erns eers so laat as November 2014 afgeskop. Dr Thys Herbst van OLG en prof Coen Marais, die Akademiese Bestuurder vir die Fakulteit Lettere en Wysbegeerte het gedurende November 2014 op ‘n rondomtalie bemarkingstoer deur die hele land gereis ten einde al die Suid-Afrikaanse Polisie Diens (SAPD) se Provinsiale Opleidings-hoofde persoonlik te gaan verwittig van die nuwe graad en die toegevoegde waarde wat dit tot veral die bestuursopleiding van polisiebeamptes kan lewer. Die bemarking van die graad is baie positief deur al die bevelvoerders ontvang en hulle het onderneem om die inligting tot op stasievlak af te wentel.

Die graad kwalifikasie is ook so ontwerp dat dit opleidingsmoontlikhede en –voordele inhou, nie net vir die SAPD nie, maar veral ook vir Metro en Verkeerspolisie-beamptes wat daagliks met wetstoepassing werk. Die Militêre Polisie en privaat sekuriteitsbeamptes kan ook baat vind by die graadkursus en bemarkingsinisiatiewe onder hierdie polisiëringsagentskappe word tans gedoen.
Daar word laastens ook gekyk na Further Education and Training (FET) Kolleges wat tans ‘n Nasionale Serifikaat in Veiligheid en Sekuriteit tot op NQF Vlak 4 aanbied.
 
Ten einde hierdie leerlinge, asook polisiebeamptes wie se Graad 12 sertifikaat nie universiteitstoelating bied nie tot die hoofstroom voorgraadse studente toe te laat, is die Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer tans besig om ‘n UNIVPREP (Universitêre Voorbereidingsprogram) te implementeer.
Tot op datum het die Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer reeds elf (11) aansoeke/navrae ontvang wat tans geprosesseer word.

UODL NWU Graduation Ceremonies

The NWU students studying via open distance learning receive their qualifications at graduation ceremonies across South Africa twice a year. These joyous occasions are always characterised by excitement and celebrations as graduates proudly attend the ceremonies with their families and loved ones. All interaction with students is executed with special attention to detail to make each ceremony a memorable occasion.
UODL presented nine graduation ceremonies across two weeks at the end of January 2015. Over that period we saw nearly 2 588 students make their way across the red carpet. There were three graduation ceremonies in Durban this year for the first time, because of the large number of students.
Graduations conducted in January 2015 showed a 72% growth in graduands and diplomands as measured against the last graduation which took place in July 2014. This showed an increase of 1 221 graduates this time around. Of all students on the graduation list, 89% attended the various ceremonies.
Staff of the North West University who attended the ceremonies were prof Rantua Letsosa (head functionary and acting rector on behalf of the campus rector prof Herman van Schalkwyk, prof Manie Spamer Executive Director of UODL, prof Awie Kotzé, dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, dr Marinda van Zyl Director of Operations and Administration at the UODL, dr Marry Mdakane on behalf of the Dean of the Faculty Education Science, and ms Elsabe Bornman on behalf of die Director of Nursing.
Guests who attended the graduation ceremonies were ms C. Botha in Polokwane; messrs Zitha, Mthethwa and Mbele in Durban; mr V C Kalipa (Centre Manager), mr Mxoli, ms Swababa and ms Tunzelana in East London, and dr F Joubert in George.

Ministers/Pastors who led us in Scripture reading and prayer and who concluded the ceremony with prayer were pastor SK Molefe in Krugersdorp; bishop Sinclair in Polokwane, pastor L Erasmus Nelspruit; pastor C Spies in Durban; rev Jafta in East London and ds A Louw in George. In her message of congratulation during the ceremony in George, dr Marry Mdakane said that she was sure all of the students graduating would agree with her that the road to that point had not always been an easy one. She had been a student herself not so long ago, and before starting university nobody was quite sure whether they were capable of pursuing a university education whilst dealing with the demands of everyday life. To graduate in your chosen field is a wonderful achievement of which students should be very proud. She congratulated them on persevering and getting to the graduation day, but, as they have been told many times: this was just the beginning. Education is a privilege and shouldn’t be thought of as ending when obtaining a qualification. After NPDE you continue to ACE; after ACE you continue to BEdHons. Hopefully students will continue the education process for the rest of their lives, as alumni of this university


Projekte en kortleerprogramme

Die Afdeling het in Januarie reeds weggespring met kortleerprogramme vir meer as 1000 deelnemers in leerareas soos Skoolbestuur en -leierskap, Sexual Reproductive Health en Career Guidance. Weens die feit dat die kortleerprogramme eiesoortige en spesifieke vereistes en tydraamwerk het, is daar besluit dat die afdeling ten volle verantwoordelik sal wees vir sy eie bedryfsaspekte. Die afdeling beskik nou oor sy eie “administratiewe” kantore waar onder andere take met betrekking tot aansoeke, registrasies, opdragte, eksamens, merkers, punte, studiemateriaalverpakking ensovoorts, van kortleerprogramme hanteer word. Kantoor G28 in B11 sal vir die opdragte, merkers en studiemateriaal gebruik word. Die kantoor word deur mnr Glenville Fransman, wat op 2 Maart by ons aangesluit het, beman. Ander administratiewe take, waaronder aansoeke, registrasies (waarvan al meer as 1200 die afgelope tyd hanteer is), rekordering van data, punte inlees en bepaalde Univprep administratiewe take, word in B11A:G15 deur me N Lamprecht en me M Nice hanteer.

Die aantal UnivPrep studente het hierdie jaar ook toegeneem en daar is tans 200 ingeskrewe studente. Verder het ongeveer 50 voltydse BA-studente ingeskryf vir die UnivPrep Wiskunde oorbruggingskursus wat deur die EOAL afgelewer word. Waar Univprep in die verlede saam met OLG afgelewer is, word die program in totaliteit vanaf 2015 slegs deur die EOAL hanteer. Die 2015 inname het suksesvol afgeskop op 25 Februarie met ‘n induksiesessie wat deur me A Jacobs hanteer is. Die afdeling is dan nou ook verantwoordelik vir die verpakking van studiemateriaal vir UnivPrep asook alle ander kortleerprogramme. Die personeel moes almal inklim om al die verskillende programme se materiaal te verpak.

In 2014 is mnre A Rabe en B Schouwstra genooi na ʼn werkswinkel by die Fakulteit Ingenieurswese om onder andere die werksaamhede van die EOAL te verduidelik en die moontlikheid van samewerking vir die aflewering van programme te ondersoek. Voortspruitend hieruit het ʼn Internasionale werkgroep van die International Nuclear Management Academy wat bestaan uit 8 internasionale universiteite wat onder andere Manchester, Moscow, China en Japan insluit, die EOAL 27 Februarie besoek as deel van 'n "fact finding mission". Die doel van die besoek was om die EOAL se manier van aanbieding te ondersoek met die oog op moontlike samewerking in die aflewering van kortleerprogramme en/of die gebruik van ons tegnologie, nie slegs op nasionale vlak nie, maar ook internasionaal. Dr H Esterhuizen het die EOAL se tegnologie aan die werksgroep gedemonstreer.


International peer evaluation

The Unit of Open Distance Learning (UODL) at the North-West University (NWU) is responsible for the delivery of NWU accredited academic programmes for all open distance learning (ODL) students. The notion of quality plays an important role in the delivery of open distance programmes.
Quality assurance at the UODL consists of four phases:

  •  Planning: Plan your quality processes
  •  Implementation: Implement the quality processes and collect the relevant data
  • Evaluation: Analyse the data, evaluate the results and compile a report
  • Development: Develop a dev elopment plan based on the results

Quality assurance at the UODL is determined by various processes, such as operational research, evaluation of open distance learning centres, evaluation of examination centres during examination time, self evaluation and external peer evaluation.
During 2014 the UODL conduct operational research on how students experience the delivery of their open distance programmes. The UODL also visit 33 open distance learning centres to establish their effectiveness. The UODL and Open Learning Group (administrative collaborator) furthermore visit 50 examination centres to evaluate the organisation and administration of these centres. The Quality Office also conduct a self evaluation of the UODL. This self evaluation led to a self evaluation report which will form the basis for the international peer evaluation that will take place from 17 August to 24 August 2015.
A decision was taken by the UODL management in 2014 to set up an international peer review evaluation so that we can measure ourselves against other open distance learning institutions in the world. The first priority was to identify suitable people for the job. Seven academics from various countries were identified. These people was approach and all of them eagerly accepted the invitation to be part of such a peer evaluation panel.


The ACDE-TCC meeting was held on 27 February 2015 at the Catholic University of Mozambique in Beira. Dr Almero Kok attended this meeting on behalf of the Unit for Open Distance Learning of the North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus. Among the issues discussed at this meeting were the toolkit on quality assurance, new innovations such as OERs and MOOCs, training staff to pilot the toolkit and reporting on tablet pilot studies as an alternative in ODL. Dr Petra Bester and dr Hennie Esterhuizen had made it possible for the Unit for Open Distance Learning to report on research results on the tablet project by means of a pre-recorded presentation that dr Kok had to facilitate. The members attending the meeting accepted the presentation very positively and they requested to liaise with the researchers at the Unit for Open Distance Learning in this regard.
North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus was appointed the host for the next ACDE-TCC meeting to be held in June 2015. The Unit for Open Distance Learning was also requested to give a presentation and demonstration of the use of Interactive Whiteboard technology in the delivery of ODL programmes.


Embracing Brics oppertunities: Unit for Open Distance Learning

One of the North-West University’s strategies is to explore collaborative opportunities between BRICS countries. A delegation from the Potchefstroom Campus of the NWU visited India from 19 to 29 November 2014. Dr Petra Bester, academic manager (Health Sciences) from the UODL was part of a five member’ team, including prof R Balfour (Dean, Faculty of Education Science), prof CD Roux, prof W van Vollenhoven and dr S Soobramoney. The visit covered three Indian cities, namely Mumbai, Hyderabad and New Delhi, five universities, one institute and fourteen scheduled flights. The universities’ visited and the reasons for their selection were as follows:

  • Dr BR Ambedkar Open University (Hyderabad): the first open university in India, a focused distance education university providing affordable learning opportunities.
  • Jawaharlal Nehru University (New Delhi): an established university in Delhi with a strong focus on educational- and health sciences, including known aspects within developing countries such as human rights and ethics in education.
  • Indira Gandhi Open University (New Delhi): the largest distance university in India with more than three million students.
  • Amity University (New Delhi): a private conventional and distance university with over 100 000 students.
  • Tata Institute of Social Sciences (Mumbai): conducting research about similar challenges in both India and South Africa on social issues such as health systems, educational law, cultural diversity and human rights.

The similarities between India and South Africa were clearly visible, and challenges such as poverty, digital divides and human rights discrimination are realities. In healthcare, the disease burden associated with chronic disease, HIV/AIDS and poverty-related conditions presented through free-of-charge rural-based services versus mushrooming super-specialty and expensive private healthcare, surfaced in each discussion. The prevailing educational direction experienced by myself was the role of distance education as the mechanism to change communities, improve social justice and empower people. In India educational challenges are presenting affordable education to employed and adult students over vast distances yet maintaining quality.

The outcome of these visits was a proposed action plan to the North-West University for memoranda of agreement and joint research initiatives to explore the quality of distance learning and blended learning best practices. In summary, the Unit for Open Distance Learning partakes in BRICS collaborative initiatives to enhance distance learning regarding quality, outcomes and systems.


Nov 2014

mail ICDE-Kongres in Moskou

mail Examinations in Namibia

mail Exploration into Partnerships for Nursing in Lesotho

mail Health Sciences Pave the Way with a Pilot Project in Tablet Technology

mail NWU Kovokasie in London


ICDE-Kongres in Moskou

Die jaarlikse International Council for Open and Distance Education is vanaf 24-26 September in Moskou, Rusland deur die Moscow State University of Economics, Statistics and Informatics (MESI) aangebied. Sewe en vyftig lande en meer as 200 afgevaardigdes het die kongres bygewoon. Die hooftema was meer toeganklikheid vir studente tot hoëronderwys en bekostigbaarheid van kursusse. Dit is duidelik dat studente in OAL die getal aan kontak universiteite nou ver verbygetseek het. Die moderne term wat gebruik word vir onderrig, afstand en kontak, is TEL, wat staan vir Technology Enhanced Learning en terme soos blended, mixed, en mutual learning word vervang met dié term. Tydens die kongres het dr M van Zyl ‘n voordrag gelewer met die titel, The use of Smart interactive white board technology in the delivery of distance learning programmes in South Africa.


Examinations in Namibia

During August 2014 Namibian students wrote their annual semester exams. The North-West University sent a team of senior managers to do a quality audit on the operations of exams. Centres were visited in Windhoek, Ongwediwa and Oukapi. Problems that were identified were communicated with OLG. Currently more than 3 000 teachers in Namibia are enrolled for an ACE or BEdHons programme. Nursing programmes will start in 2015.


Exploration into Partnerships for Nursing in Lesotho

Despite the realities of an imminent coup de etat within Lesotho as proclaimed on national television, Dr Petra Bester and Mrs Yolanda Kirsten visited this country in search of a partnership in nursing enrolments. On 29 September 2014 they visited the management team of the Maluti Adventist College, approximately 73km from Maseru. This College can be described as a jewel snugged between the Maluti Mountains, in Mapoteng. The College originated with the former Maluti Adventist Hospital in 1953, and specialised in nursing training. It closed down in 1994, but re-opened again with the support of the Lesotho Council for Higher Education. The College is spearheaded by Dr Amelia Ranotsi, former Dean from the National University of Lesotho.

Although the College is at present positioned to train registered nurses and midwives, its vision is not limited to nursing only. The outcome of the discussions was a possible memorandum of understanding which is now in process of exploration. This possible collaboration is another example of the Unit for Open Distance Learning’s expansion into SADC countries to provide more higher education opportunities to students through distance learning.

 


Health Sciences Pave the Way with a Pilot Project in Tablet Technology

From May to September 2014 a dynamic pilot study was conducted amongst Health Service Management students. This project was funded by the Unit for Open Distance Learning and turned out to be a major success. The project realised under the supervision of dr Hennie Esterhuizen and dr Petra Bester, both managers from the UODL. The main objectives of this project were to explore i) the most suitable tablet technology in combination with an online learning management system; ii) tablet technology and electronic content (study guides and other content) adoption by post-basic adults learners; iii) the realities to provide preloaded tablet technology to students and provide the necessary support; iv) the realities and challenges of role players when activating new technology; and also v) to conduct a cost analysis and vi) to formulate a strategic plan for technology within a blended learning model. The project was conducted within the structures of the research process. Purposive, all inclusive sampling was conducted and 45 students enrolled as participants after signing informed consent. The participants were randomly divided into three groups, each group with fifteen participants received different types of tablets. The following three tablets and operating systems were used: iPad (Apple), Netsurfer Dual (Android) and Lenovo ThinkPad (Windows 8). Four second semester modules of the Advanced University Diploma in Health Service Management were digitised through SMARTguides by Academic Support Services at the Vaal Triangle Campus of the NWU. This entailed that 50% of the diploma could be presented in electronic format. Mr Jacques Pienaar programmed a content management application that organised guides and other applicable documents, web links and useful applications on the tablets. Participants received proper training and continuous support in using these tablets. Through a process of five months, various activities were completed by the participants, including linkage to efundi (Sakai) and Moodle, Internet searches and e-mails. All tablets were equipped with WiFi only. As students could come to contact sessions at the UODL on selected Saturdays, students were also monitored for their ability to use WiFi, to scope for WiFi hotspots or to use their own sim cards. A comprehensive pretest survey was conducted, containing three sections with open, closed and continuous open questions. After the participants had completed various activities, a post-test and focus groups were conducted.


NWU Kovokasie in London

Tydens die amptelike NWU konvokasie in London, Verenigde Koninkryk 3-10 Oktober 2014, het die NWU EOAL die eerste keer in samewerking met die NWU se vennoot, Greenwich School of Theology, grade aan studente in die Fakulteit Teologie oorhandig. Die EOAL was ook teenwoordig by die NWU Alumni Rëunie, vir oud-studente van die NWU wat huidig in London woon.


Aug 2014

mail NADEOSA Conference

mail ADCE Konferensie

mail EOAL: Teologie tot dusver

mail Interaktiewe witborde by studiesentrums

mail New Website for UODL


NADEOSA Conference

The National Association of Distance Education and Open Learning in South Africa (NADEOSA) held a conference on the 24 and 25 June 2014 in Pretoria with the theme Exploring the policy implications for flexible provision in an integrated post-schooling system.
The conference organisers planned a colloquium for the first morning. Dr Engela van Staden from the Department of Higher Education and Training presented the keynote address focussing on the White Paper for Post School Education and Training. In her presentation she unpacked the policy and the possible implications for Higher Education in South Africa. It is clear from her presentation that the DHET wants to create more access to higher education and one way of doing it is to expand distance education at South African Higher Education providers.
The second part of the colloquium was a reflection session where academics from different sectors in higher education responded to the keynote address. What was interesting about this conference was the fact that NADEOSA made a deliberate attempt to invite and include not only universities but all higher education providers, such as TVET colleges and private education providers. For the first time stakeholders from all higher education sectors where talking about distance education at the same forum.
The second keynote address was delivered by Prof K Naidoo from the Council of Higher Education (CHE). Her presentation focussed on the role the CHE plays to ensure quality for all programmes including distance education programmes.
The rest of the programme consists of a panel discussion on innovation in education and parallel sessions. Fifty academics presented their papers on various topics in the field of distance education.
Dr Petra Bester and Dr Martin Combrinck from the Unit of Distance Learning, North-West University each presented a paper. Dr Bester presented on The realities of tablet technology in distance education: A pilot study and Dr Combrinck on Students’ perceptions for the use of interactive whiteboards in the delivery of open distance learning programmes.
The overall feeling from conference delegates was that the conference was a great success and a decision was taken at the NADEOSA AGM to make it an annual event.


ADCE Konferensie

Dr Almero Kok van die Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer het die ACDE konferensie met die tema Continental integration through open and distance learning in Africa vanaf 6 tot 9 Junie 2014 by Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe bygewoon. Gedurende die verloop van die konferensie is ongeveer 100 referate gelewer. Die doel van die konferensiebywoning was om netwerke in Afrika op die gebied van afstandsonderrig te bou. Dr Kok het ‘n referaat by die konferensie gelewer met die titel IWB implementation for ODL at North-West University learning centres: Attitudes of students. Die gebruik van interaktiewe witbord tegnologie (IWB) vir onderrig en leer in OAL het wye belangstelling uitgelok aangesien die gebruik van hierdie tegnologie in afstandsonderrig onbekend was vir die gehoor. Hy het gedurende die duur van die konferensie as voorsitter opgetree vir die sub-tema, ODL: The virtual empowerment model in Higher Education. Ander sub-temas tydens die konferensie was:

  • The philosophical context of ODL,
  • The rationale for open access and empowerment,
  • Inclusive ODL philosophy vis-a-vis elitists’ philosophies in Higher Education, and
  • Higher education in the socio-economic context: the role of ODL en Quality assurance across ODL programmes.

Die konferensie is deur meer as 200 akademici en afstandsonderrigkenners bygewoon. Verskeie internasionale sprekers, insluitende afgevaardiges van ICDE en UNESCO, het as programsprekers by die konferensie opgetree.


EOAL: Teologie tot dusver

Ten einde die Fakulteit Teologie se inskakeling by die Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer te verbeter, is die Akademiese Bestuurder: Teologie, Mnr MJ Bornman, besig om in 2014 besoek af te lê aan al die Oop Afstandsleer Sentra waar die Teologieprogramme aangebied word. In Mei, het Mnr. Bornman besoek afgelê by die Reformed Theological College of Uganda, waar hy spesifieke kwaliteitsaangeleenthede met die bestuur bespreek het. Soortgelyke besoeke is reeds vir die res van die jaar beplan.
Die Fakulteit Teologie het ook sy eerste graduandi in samewerking met die EOAL afgelewer. Hierdie gradeplegtigheid het deel gevorm van die afstandsgradeplegtighede op 17 Julie 2014. Verder is die eerste graduandi vanuit die Oop Afstandsleer Sentrum in Portugal opgelewer, wat in September hul grade sal ontvang.
Die Eenheid het ook, in samewerking met die Fakulteit Teologie, `n kontrak gesluit met die Pentacostal Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies in Italië, vir die opleiding van BAHons studente. Die eerste studente sal in 2015 by die NWU inskryf.
Laastens is Teologie vanaf volgende jaar ten volle geïntegreerd in die Eenheid se metode van aanbieding, met die BTh kwalifikasie wat ten volle deur die Eenheid aangebied gaan word.


Interaktiewe witborde by studiesentrums

Gedurende 2014 is 'n besluit geneem om alle studiesentrums met addisionele witbord-tegnologie toe te rus om sodoende meer programme by studiesentrums te fasiliteer. Teologie, Mentorskap, Opvoedkunde en Verpleegkunde maak toenemend gebruik van fasiliteite by studiesentrums regoor SA om hul programme te fasiliteer.
Teen die einde van 2014 verwag ons dat alle studiesentrums ten minste twee interaktiewe witborde sal hê, wat die EOAL in staat sal stel om meer programme by studiesentrums te akkommodeer. Daar is reeds vier interaktiewe witborde geïnstalleer by Durban, Port Shepstone, Empangeni en Polokwane om aan die behoefte van die groter getal studente te voldoen wat sessies by hierdie sentrums bywoon tydens die kontaksessies en winter- en somerskole. Verder is daar nog 16 studiesentrums wat met ‘n derde interaktiewe witbord toegerus is. Hierdie studiesentrums is meestal die waar die Verpleegkunde en Opvoedkunde programme gelyktydig aangebied word. Gedurende 2015 sal die Skool vir Verpleegkunde hoofsaaklik gebruik maak van interaktiewe witbordsessies om programme oor die hele Suid-Afrika en in Namibië te fasiliteer. Daar sal ook gedurende 2015 addisionele programme van die Fakulteit Opvoedingswetenskappe bekendgestel word by alle studiesentrums.
Tydens die onlangse winterskool wat gedurende Julie 2015 by alle studiesentrums gehou is, was daar 'n toename van meer as 200% in bywoning van NPOD-studente. Die BEdHons en Gr R-programme het ook 'n beduidende groei ervaar in studente wat sessies en witbordsessies bygewoon het. Die EOAL sal bykomende maatreëls tref om te verseker dat die kwaliteit van die fasilitering en witbordsessies gehandhaaf word. Daarom sal die bywoning by studie-sentrums op 'n ereelde basis evalueer word om te verseker dat sentrums die kapasiteit het om studente te ondersteun tydens alle kontaksessies.

 


New Website for UODL

In January 2014 the Unit for Open Distance Learning became the first department to attain its own sub-domain on the NWU web (http://distance.nwu.ac.za). Work on the new website started in collaboration with the marketing department (MAC), the UODL quality office and the Institutional web office.
The new website went live on 23 July 2014 and has been continually monitored and adapted as required. It contains a “web response” which students can complete and send to relevant people in the UODL in order to monitor problems that students experience, and also to supply answers to questions. Subsequently students who have no e-mail address will also be able to contact the call centre at the UODL via webform.
The aim with this new website is to make it easier for current as well as prospectrive students to obtain information on study opportunities, and to assist them to access all additional resource material easily.
The new website includes “google maps” which allows a user to establish exactly where UODL study centres are situated, and also to obtain coordinates of the centres.
In collaboration with the UODL quality office, attemps are made to provide relevant, reader friendly information to students, as well as all documentation which may be required to apply for enrolment in any programme presented by the UODL. The new website intends to raise the average page hits from 11 000 unique visitors to about 20 000 unique visitors. The website will also be adapted according to user experience in order to make it as user friendly as possible.


 

Apr 2014

mail Counsil on Higher Education of Zimbabwe visited UODL

mail UniPrep

mail E-Leer gebeure

mail Hystoel vir Gestremde persone

mail UODL Staff visited Turkey


Counsil on Higher Education of Zimbabwe visited UODL

On Thursday 10 April 2014 a delegation of ZIMCHE and the Bindura University of Science Education visited the Unit for Open Distance Learning (UODL). The delegation was led by dr Evelyn Garwe, acting CEO of ZIMCHE, and Ms Unity Chipunza of Bindura University. The purpose of the visit was in the first place to explore a possible working relationship between ZIMCHE and the Unit, and secondly to negotiate the possibility of a memorandum of understanding between the North-West and Bindura Universities. A demonstration was also given on how the NWU utilises technology to deliver programmes at different study centres. Processes were also discussed on the way forward for NWU to offer programmes in Zimbabwe. Initially the emphasis will be on education programmes, but future development will also include programmes of other faculties. NWU will visit the ZIMCHE in May to finalise important issues.


UniPrep

UniPrep 2014 het afgeskop met 123 studente wat hul eerste treë gegee het, waarin ons hoop op die ou end baie suksesvolle akademiese loopbane aan die NWU vir hulle almal sal wees.
Die kontaksessies wat op 8 Maart ʼn aanvang geneem het, word uitgesaai na 18 studiesentrums regoor die land – vanaf Polokwane in die noorde tot Parow in die suide.
Daar word hierdie jaar drie UniPrep programme aangebied en daar is tans 51 studente ingeskryf vir die BCom program, 45 vir Teologie en 27 vir BA Ontwikkelingstudies wat hierdie jaar vir die eerste keer aangebied word. Daarbenewens het ʼn verdere 51 voltydse BA-studente ingeskryf vir die Wiskunde oorbruggingskursus met die hoop om aan die einde van die jaar na ʼn BCom studierigting te verander indien hulle die kursus sou slaag.
As voorbereidende program het UniPrep ʼn belangrike rol om te vervul en beskik die program oor baie potensiaal om toegang tot universiteitstudies op groot skaal te bevorder. In hierdie verband is dit ook vir ons aangenaam om te kan berig dat daar tans 31 studente van die 2013 UniPrep inname is wat vir voltydse studies aan die NWU geregistreer is. Die projekspan hoop dat die UniPrep aanbod vir 2015 verder uitgebrei sal kan word deur die toevoeging van verdere voorbereidende programme vir die BA-graad in Polisiëring asook die BEd graad.


E-Leer gebeure

Die EOAL beperk voorvalle wat onderbrekings in die diens aan NWU oop afstandsleerstudente kan veroorsaak tot die minimum deur middel van aktiewe risikobestuur. Om leergeleenthede met behulp van interaktiewe witborde by vyf-en-vyftig studiesentrums dwarsoor Suider-Afrika vlot te laat verloop, is addisionele voorsiening vir rekenaarnetwerk en bystandkrag by gebou B11a onlangs geïmplementeer. In ʼn tegnologie-omgewing word die kwaliteitsversekeringstrategie toegepas waarvolgens doelbewuste duplisering van toerusting of prosedures die moontlikheid verhoog dat dienste deurlopend gelewer kan word. Die rekenaarnetwerk na die nege EOAL multimedialokale in gebou B11a waarvandaan die interaktiewe witbordsessies bedryf word, is uitgebrei om op ten minste drie maniere by die internet te kan uitkom. Indien ʼn kragonderbreking voorkom, word die elektriese krag na hierdie lokale nou vanaf batterye voorsien deur twee groot wisselrigterstelsels. Hierdie toestelle word op hulle beurt deur ʼn nuwe dieselkragopwekker by B11a voorsien.


Smart Notebook-Kursus
As deel van ʼn samewerkingsooreenkoms tussen NWU en Smart Technologies en die plaaslike voorsiener, Vastratech, het tien NWU personeellede op 2 April ʼn voldagkursus bygewoon in die gebruik van die rekenaarprogram Smart Notebook. Vier personeellede van Akademiese Steundienste en drie elk van die fakulteite Opvoedkundige Wetenskappe en Gesondheidswetenskappe het eerstehands geleer hoe die gebruik van Smart Notebook addisionele moontlikhede skep in die gebruik van interaktiewe witborde om leergeleenthede te fasiliteer. Deur middel van Smart XC (Extreme Collaboration) het hulle ook ervaar hoe studente wat deelneem aan witbordsessies hulle slimfone kan gebruik om vrae te antwoord of aan meningsopnames deel te neem. Die resultate van sulke interaksie kan intyds op die witborde landswyd gesien word. Die koppeling met die program word deur middel van ʼn Snelkode (QR-code) prentjie, wat op die witbord vertoon word gedoen. Studente se knapfone koppel outomaties aan die program.
Filosofie en MCOM TAX programme
Filosofie het in Februarie 2014 begin uitsendings doen vanaf EOAL. Die uitsendings vind op Saterdae plaas en daar word na Australië en België uitgesaai. MCOM TAXM webinars, wat deur prof Pieter van der Zwan en gasdosente behartig word, word reeds op 'n weeklikse basis van 2013 af by EOAL aangebied.
Studiesentrums ontvang derde witbord
Daar is twaalf nuwe witborde geïnstalleer by buitesentrums wat deel vorm van die projek om 'n derde witbord by twintig strategiese sentrums te installeer. Die nuwe witborde sal in gebruik wees tydens die winterskool van 2014.
Panopto lesingvaslegging
Daar is huidiglik 646 opnames op Panopto beskikbaar wat vanaf Desember 2013 opgeneem is. Daar is reeds 944 gebruikersure (viewing hours) op Panopto gebruik.
Nuwe subdomain
EOAL sal binnekort na 'n nuwe subdomain beweeg op die web


Hystoel vir Gestremde persone

Nog ʼn eerste by die Eenheid vir Oop Afstandsleer is die installering van ʼn unieke en moderne hystoestel vir gestremde persone. Die toestelle word ingevoer en geïnstalleer deur JessenDakile Pty, Ltd, 'n maatskappy wat spesialiseer in die toeganklikheid vir persone met gestremdhede. Hierdie toestel is een van vier wat tot dusver op die Potchefstroomkampus geïnstalleer is en dis aangebring in gebou B11A, by die trappe wat lei na die eerste vloer. Voordat die hysers amptelik in gebruik geneem word, sal gebouverteenwoordigers, lede van beskermingsdienste, asook personeel en studente met gestremdhede, opgelei word met betrekking tot die gebruik daarvan.
Die amptelike oorhandiging en ingebruikneming van die nuwe gerief sal binnekort plaasvind. Die besondere behoeftes van gestremde studente, personeel en besoekers is vir die NWU ʼn prioriteit waarna graag omgesien word. Met die nuwe toestel in gebruik, sal die hele gebou nou toeganklik wees vir die persone.


UODL Staff visited Turkey

Prof M Spamer, dr M van Zyl and dr M Combrinck visited Turkey from 21 April to 26 April 2014. The aim of the visit was twofold: the first part of the excursion was a visit to Anadolu University in Eskisehir and the second part was to present a paper at the International Conference on Communication, Media, Technology and Design in Istanbul.
Anadolu University is the largest distance education university in Turkey and the third largest in the world. Currently the student enrolment is 1. 7 million registered students. The university has seventeen faculties of which the Open Education Faculty is the largest.
Anadolu University is the national provider of distance education in Turkey. The university’s goal is to educate Turks who live in rural areas and others who do not have the time or resources to enrol at conventional universities.
The vice rector of the university, prof Yucel Guney, officially welcomed us at the university and specifically to the Faculty of Open Education. His Drs. JM van Zyl, M Combrinck, prof. S AYDIN portfolio is distance education at the university. Thereafter they introduced us to the three vice deans of the Open Education Faculty namely prof Nuhar Sakar, prof Sinan Aydin and prof Fikret Er. Prof Er showed us a promotional DVD of the university and gave us a power point presentation of their activities at the Open Education Faculty. This was an interesting session and there was also time for us to ask questions.
After this session prof ER took us on a tour of the campus. He showed us the registry, examinations, broadcasting, media and learning material sections. We were impressed by all the systems they have in place to operate and manage such a huge student population. Prof Er explained to us the examination process and how they deal with five million papers after each examination. All the examination papers consist of multiple choice questions and are computer assessed. The university has a dedicated national television channel that they use to broadcast lectures to students sixteen hours per day. They have a team of qualified staff who produce these programmes for broadcasts, and a fully equipped studio from where they broadcast. They further use video conferencing to make contact with students. An interesting fact is that they have agreements with other universities in Turkey to use their facilities, or to contract their staff to teach some of their modules, or to academically support their students. According to prof ER, all students still receive printed material, but these materials are also available as e-books. The faculty has a team of instructional designers to assist lecturers to create learning material which is both interesting and interactive.
The second part of the tour was attending the International Conference on Communication, Media, Technology and Design in Istanbul. The conference was attended by academics from 23 countries and dr M Combrinck presented a paper, co-authored by prof Spamer and dr Van Zyl, with the title:
Students’ perceptions for the use of interactive white boards in the delivery of open distance learning programmes in South Africa
The excursion was a great success and we experienced and saw interesting aspects of distance education and specifically how to deal with large numbers effectively. Many of these aspects will be discussed at the Unit for Open Distance Learning management meetings. We hope to identify possible aspects of their practice that can be relevant for the Unit for Open Distance Learning.


Feb 2014

mail e-leer Ondersteuning

mail Improve distance educations in nursing, one textbook at a time

mail Starting with a bang

mail Somerskool