[Issue 107] Media Monitoring: Extract of Press News on Higher Education in Africa

What Have We Learned About Online Learning? (Global)
The COVID-19 pandemic forced colleges, professors and students to engage with digital forms of education in ways many of them never had. Did the experience of teaching and learning remotely make them more open to online education and to using technology in the physical classroom? Did professors get more comfortable with teaching with technology? Did it change student expectations about when and how they learn? A series of recent episodes of Inside Higher Ed’s Key podcast explored those and other questions. One episode featured Shanna Smith Jaggars, assistant vice president of research and program assessment in Ohio State University’s Office of Student Academic Success, and Jessica Rowland Williams, director of Every Learner Everywhere, which pursues equitable outcomes in higher education through advances in digital learning. Jaggars describes herself as a “critical friend” of online education; Rowland Williams is a strong advocate for the role high-quality virtual learning can play in improving postsecondary access and success for underrepresented students. Inside Higher Ed: Both of you have spent a good bit of time thinking and talking and researching about what we learned about digital teaching and learning during these two years in which we saw a lot more institutions, professors and students engaging in it than had been true before. What most altered your pre-pandemic view of the digital learning landscape? Shanna Smith Jaggars: Two things really surprised me. For many years I’ve been what you might call a critical friend of online education in higher education. Read more here.

Climate-smart solutions can drive green growth in Africa (Africa)
African countries have a huge responsibility to transform climate change challenges into opportunities to ensure green growth. More can be done using technology, but technology alone cannot deliver sustainable solutions. This means that policies, institutional systems, incentives and digital revolution can help to mitigate climatic challenges in Africa. Therefore, government members of the Partnership for skills in Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology (PASET) have identified climate change as a priority theme to support transformative green technologies through PhD and M programmes through the Regional Scholarship and Innovation Fund (RSIF). This was revealed during the last day of the pan-African RSIF Conference held on 29 June, in a session on innovation and green growth for sustainable development. Panellists delved into various ways that African countries can enhance green growth at higher-education institutions. The theme of the conference was ‘African-led science, technology and innovation for contributing to the SDGs and stimulating global development’. Panellists agreed that climate-smart agriculture is a viable mitigation strategy against climate change, and that involving communities and farmers in it is essential for green growth development. Professor Lindsay C Stringer of the University of York, United Kingdom, notes that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report shows that climate change can also constrain Africa’s knowledge economy, as climate-related research faces severe data limitations as well as inequalities in research leadership that reduces adaptive capacity. Stringer told University World News that some of the biggest achievements of African universities in terms of green growth can be attributed to embracing inclusivity through collaborations and partnerships that bring on board those who are often left behind, such as women, marginalised groups and youths. Read more here.






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