Nigeria has introduced a single entrance examination for all for all tertiary institutions - universities, polytechnics and colleges of education. It is the first time the government has sought to harmonise entry examinations and it will take place next Saturday with 6.4 million registered candidates.
Kenya's National Council for Science and Technology and the British Council are to work together to expand the Africa Knowledge Transfer Partnership programme. The aim is to provide opportunities for businesses to improve their competitiveness and productivity through the better use of higher education knowledge, technology and expertise.
Lecturers at the National University of Science and Technology, Zimbabwe's main science university, have gone on strike over unpaid allowances. Meanwhile, the state has renewed its crackdown on students resulting in countrywide arrests, court appearances, abductions, disciplinary hearings and expulsions over demonstrations staged on 29 March in protest against continuing deterioration of higher education standards.
At 3.4%, HIV prevalence among students at South African universities is well below the national average, suggesting that prevention strategies aimed at the sector are finding their mark. But there's no cause for complacency, according to interpretations of a study by the Higher Education HIV and Aids Programme (HEAids) on HIV prevalence and knowledge, attitude, behaviour and practice. There are still signs of risky behaviour on campuses.
In the past decade the University of Cape Town, UCT, has established itself as Africa's top university. High global rankings, large numbers of international students and significant growth in research output has helped cement its reputation. Now, said Vice-chancellor Dr Max Price, "we're positioning ourselves as a significant global player". The aim is to make Cape Town an interface between academic activities in Africa and the rest of the world.
The new director of the Africa Institute for Mathematical Sciences, distinguished mathematician Professor Barry Green, took office this month. He intends to ensure that the institute keeps promoting maths and science while building capacity for African initiatives in education, research and technology.
Africans have a rich cultural heritage and a wealth of traditional knowledge on topics ranging from agriculture and forestry to medicines and medical practices, all of which could make valuable contributions to modern science - but only if science can be translated into local languages.
South Africa was ranked the first in Africa and 51st globally in the 2010 Global Innovation Index released last month by the international business school INSEAD and the Confederation of Indian Industry. The country finished 26th for investment in education and 29th for the quality of scientific research institutions.
The Association for the Development of Education in Africa will launch a new prize to promote excellence in educational research in African universities and research institutes and networks, and among the African diaspora working and studying throughout the world, reported Sudonline of Dakar, Senegal.
A new international centre for training local authority officials and elected councillors of 15 West and Central African countries has been inaugurated in Ouagadougou, reported Sidwaya of Ouagadougou.
Students at the Université des Sciences et Technique of Massuku who bullied freshers have avoided dismissal from the university, reported Gabonews of Libreville.
Mauritania and Mozambique hope that Algeria will increase the number of grant quotas it makes each year for their students and widen its collaboration with them in higher education and research, reported La Tribune of Algiers.
The University of Nairobi in Kenya has been sued after a male cat in its possession for treatment vanished. The cat's owner, Tawhida Yakub, filed a suit against the university seeking compensation. Yakubsaid she had taken Fifi to the College of Veterinary Science at the Kabete campus in Nairobi in December for treatment of wounds and castration - but he subsequently disappeared without trace.
Some of the most sophisticated mechanisms for tackling fraud in admissions applications have been developed by West African countries Nigeria and Ghana, the British Council conference was told.
Teachers in Benin's three state universities have suspended industrial action that lasted for five months.
The University Academic Staff Union has lashed out at a proposal to merge 'regular' and 'parallel' degree programmes offered at Kenya's public universities, and accused the World Bank of "sabotage".
A security guard at Makerere University in the Ugandan capital Kampala allegedly shot and killed two Kenyan students this month, sparking riots on the campus. The two Kenyans, first year law student Brian Livasia Amuoga and third year commerce student Ignatius Nyongesa, were killed at a hostel while campaigning for student elections.
Following two decades of tumultuous change, universities in South Africa were warned of much more to come when Minister of Higher Education and Training, Dr Blaze Nzimande, delivered his budget vote in parliament on Thursday. Universities will receive R17.5 billion (US$2.4 billion) this year - the lion's share of a R32 billion post-school budget.
The newly-appointed chief executive of South Africa's Council on Higher Education, Ahmed Essop, will tackle organisational turmoil that has been undermining the work of the statutory policy advisory body when he takes up the post in May.
Zambia is considering introducing a higher education levy and a law compelling beneficiaries of state loans to pay back, as the costs of running universities is proving unsustainable for the state. The government has also slapped a ceiling on what universities can pay lecturers due to financial constraints in the poor Southern African country.
Zimbabwe has put in place plans to construct four more universities, one of them a private initiative of former Kutama High School students who include the country's long-time autocratic leader, President Robert Mugabe. Three other public universities are to be built in provinces that currently do not have one.
It has been called a "monumental disappointment" by South Africa's official opposition. But student groups have predictably welcomed a review of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme, which represents a "first step" towards realising the ruling African National Party's plan to progressively introduce free higher education for poor undergraduates.
Mozambique is to receive US$40 million to support implementation of a Higher Education Science and Technology (HEST) project, the World Bank announced. The project's aim is to support the government's policy goals of economic development and poverty alleviation by increasing the number and quality of graduates and improving national research capacity.
I support the ideal of free higher education. I also support the idea that health care should be available free of charge to all in need, just as I believe that South Africa's economic and social policies should prioritise full employment through which all can enjoy the dignity that is associated with leading economically and socially productive lives.
Science and education development can only flourish in Africa through support for home grown institutions. The Regional Initiative in Science and Education, RISE, has been striving to achieve this for the past 18 months through university-based networks that train science and engineering academics for African universities.