The New Higher Education? Learning and Teaching in a “Knowledge Society” with the Emphasis on Online Environments

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2002-07
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Commonwealth of Learning (COL)
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PCF2 // As global societies brace themselves for the 21st century, the skills and the knowledge required to work, learn and communicate are changing at an extremely rapid pace. // The impact of information technology on society and education is profound and has long-term effects on the global society as a whole. New terms such as ‘groupware’, ‘intellective skills’ and ‘online learning’ have been coined to describe the tools, behaviours and processes unique to the emerging knowledge-based economy. // This paper explores the theoretical intricacies of online teaching and learning using the Technikon SA scenario as an example for the investigation. The theoretical enquiries of other countries in relation to our unique situation in South Africa will be compared and discussed. // South African institutions have to be seen as being responsive to higher education’s imperatives and global and economic requirements, as well as promoting the notion of bridging the digital divide. // Therefore, this research will examine the enormous challenges facing institutions, academics and students. The purpose of this research is two-fold: // Firstly, to answer the question: Is employing online teaching and learning contingent on practicality and expense especially for distance learning in Southern African higher education? // Secondly, to answer the question: Are academics and students at Technikon SA ready to embrace the new notion of online teaching and learning and, if they are, do they use the learning and teaching environment effectively and optimally? //

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South Africa
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Africa
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