MANCOSA is hosting its first ever Quality Conference in September 2021. The conference will focus on Quality Management and Emerging Trends in Digitally Enabled Learning
Over the past decade, digitally-enabled online education has shown significant growth. In utilising the internet for the delivery of learning, access to education has grown, facilitating the widespread availability of skills development and academic programmes in a vast array of fields. As globally renowned, Ivy League institutions such as Harvard University embraced online learning, these modalities were afforded a public perception of legitimacy, which ultimately resulted in widespread acceptance and increased public demand for online education. Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 drastically influenced the education sector, as physical campuses were shut down and learning was migrated to online platforms out of necessity. Locally, the South African Higher Education (HE) landscape is on the precipice of a transitional phase, with the CHE’s proposed Quality Assurance Framework (QAF) indicating that HE Institutions will be expected to have a greater level of responsibility and autonomy in the management of internal quality. Within this forthcoming regulatory context, it is critical that institutions develop robust and effective mechanisms for the management of institutional quality, and especially for the context of online learning.
In line with global and local developments, over the past four years MANCOSA has worked to strategically position itself to harness and utilise technology to streamline operations and provide more efficient means of digitally-enabled academic delivery and support. As such, MANCOSA has sought to pioneer the transition to online learning within the Southern African distance education space, underpinned by robust, and qualitatively sound, research-supported teaching and learning principles and practices.
Principally, the Online Quality Conference will be used as a space to reflect on the current shift towards digitally-enabled, online-based education and the implications this transition has on quality management in academic institutions. As we transition to an increasingly dynamic online educational environment, how do we reconceptualise our approach and methodologies to the management of quality? This question permeates a variety of key academic functions including, but not limited to, academic delivery, teaching and learning, research and assessments. As these functions are migrated online, how do we monitor and quality assure these academic processes? What new tools and mechanisms can we deploy? Is there a need for us to reconceptualise our understanding of quality in this new, online space? How do we align our practices to regulatory requirements? What are the emergent trends that have been developing in this space?
The conference aims to ask and address these sorts of questions around our approach to quality in an increasingly digital, online space. The objective will be to examine, unpack and explore these questions specifically in relation to a rapidly growing, and highly adaptable digitally-enabled online environment, wherein there is a degree of market and regulatory uncertainty. This can include exploring the various quality tools and mechanisms which have been deployed by different institutions, as well as the expectations that industry and professional bodies have of graduates entering the workforce in a post-COVID era. Ultimately, the conference should help us identify key solutions, strategies and approaches for the implementation of quality management mechanisms in order to assure that high quality, industry-relevant academic programmes can be delivered digitally within the higher education sector.
MANCOSA, a leading provider of management programmes through supported distance learning in Southern Africa, is renowned for its MBA offering, which is ranked among the 10 of the best MBAs in Africa. A member of Honoris United Universities – the first Pan-African private higher education network focused on nurturing the next generation of African leaders and professionals. MANCOSA serves as an innovation hub for undergraduate and postgraduate management, offering 50 accredited programmes. A selection of Executive Education Short Learning Programmes is also offered to meet the requirements of professionals in both the private and public sectors. See: www.mancosa.co.za
For queries or additional information call 031 300 7200, email [email protected] or visit https://www.mancosa.co.za/.
About Honoris United Universities
Honoris United Universities is the first and largest Pan-African private higher education network committed to educating the next generation of African leaders and professionals able to impact regionally in a globalised world. Collaborative intelligence, cultural agility and mobile mind-sets and skills are at the heart of Honoris’ vision of higher education. Honoris United Universities joins the expertise of its member institutions to develop world-class African Human capital that is competitive in today’s fast-paced, demanding and increasingly digitised labour and start-up markets.
Honoris United Universities gathers a community of 57,000 students on 70 campuses, learning centres and via on-line, in 10 countries and 32 cities. The network counts 14 institutions: multidisciplinary universities, specialised schools, technical and vocational institutes, contact, distance, and online institutions. Students have an opportunity to experience exclusive partnerships and exchange programs in more than 85 universities across Europe and the United States. Over 300 degrees are offered in Health Sciences, Engineering, IT, Business, Law, Architecture, Creative Arts and Design, Media, Political Science and Education.
Honoris United Universities. Education for Impact. www.honoris.net