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Tuesday, 23 May 2006

Establishing ties Down Under

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The Interim Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic, Prof Anthony Staak, was part of a delegation of vice-chancellors of the six Universities of Technology that visited Australia to establish closer links with the Australian University of Technology sector and the Australian Technology Network (ATN).

Discussions started in 2004 between the Committee of Technikon Principals (CTP) and the Committee on Tutorial Matters (CTM) around the formation of a South Africa Technology Network (SATN).

The formation of such a network is similar to that in Australia. The purpose of the network is to provide support to the newly created universities of technology.

Prof Staak and Mr Mark Hay of the Higher Education Quality Committee (HEQC) visited Australia at the end of 2005 to meet with representatives of the ATN in preparation for the visit of the South African delegation. The delegation was also invited to attend the ATN Conference.

The South African vice-chancellors visited various universities of technology in Australia. The aim of the visits was to look at the operation of Australian universities of technology, the programmes offered, how they developed curricula, their relationship with industry, the relationship with local government and the local community. They also looked at how the universities distinguished themselves from traditional universities.

Prof Roy du Pré, Acting Vice-Chancellor of the Vaal University of Technology, made a presentation on behalf of the South African delegation at the conference.

The vice-chancellors met with representatives from the Malaysian universities of technology at the conference. The Malaysians showed a keen interest in collaborating with the SA universities of technology.

CAPTION: Forging links down under: From left are Prof Bruce King (Director Flexible Learning Centre, Univ. South Australia), Prof Anthony Staak (CPUT Interim Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic), Ms Vicki Thompson (Director ATN), Prof Shirley Alexander (Dean of Education, University of Technology, Sydney), Dr Mark Hay (Manager, Higher Education Quality Committee) and Prof Bruce Shortland-Jones (Director, Learning Support Network, Curtin University)

Written by CPUT News

Email: news@cput.ac.za