A professional development initiative that extends learning beyond the classroom

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By Innocentia Alexander, Academic at MANCOSA

Maintaining current knowledge in your field of study helps you stand out in the job market.

One way to encourage professional development is by organizing masterclasses for staff and students of a higher education organization.

A masterclass is a platform for short discussion on a particular topic, with the aim of introducing a new concept for development. In the context of this piece, masterclasses enhance student learning by providing them with current topics for discussion as they emerge in the various fields of study. These masterclasses, for example, are designed to provide an opportunity for important developments needed as a 21st century teacher in teacher education institutions.

Lecturers may recognize important developments in a field of study and invite industry professionals to present essential knowledge gained through years of experience that goes beyond the classroom content.

During these masterclasses, students interact with lecturers and invited industry professionals. Masterclasses essentially serve as platforms for professionals to share their experiences, skills, and everyday knowledge in order to inspire students.

Positive interactions with a range of lecturers, according to research, help students acquire new concepts in a number of ways, giving them a perspective on learning that goes beyond what a single lecturer can offer.

It is, therefore, critical for educational institutions to provide professional development opportunities, not only for students, but also for lecturers, students, stakeholders, policy representatives and curriculum developers through masterclasses.

For example, MANCOSA’s school of education hosts masterclasses that are attended by students, lecturers, educators, and other stakeholders.

Some of the topics covered are: “Leading change in an age of digital transformation” and “Imagining decolonized and Afrocentric education in the times of industrial revolutions”. These topics are current discussions happening in the education field and provide opportunities for debates and solution-based discussions.

While masterclasses provide the advantage of improving knowledge through interaction with industry professionals in a field of study, they also contribute to professional development as a requirement by some professional bodies.

For example, in the field of education, the South African Council for Educators (SACE) ensures that teachers continue to grow as professionals. SACE’s current method tracks teacher progress using a points system. Attending a masterclass counts toward these points, and certificates of attendance are offered by some institutions, such as MANCOSA.

Moreover, having a certificate after attending a masterclass can be used when applying for jobs or promotions within an organization. They demonstrate to employers that you are committed to professional growth, as the knowledge, skills, and values learned from a masterclass improve your ability to contribute to their organization.

It is, therefore, important for every staff, student and other relevant stakeholders to attend masterclasses. These do not only introduce them to new trends in this digital era but will also expose them to topics that will mount in them, critical spirits for their professional developments in their fields of study.


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:
For queries or additional information call 031 300 7200, email [email protected] or visit

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.

Issued by:
Yogin Devan
Meropa Communications
(031) 201 0550 / 083 326 3962

On behalf of:
Honoris United Universities