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Africa News
KENYA: MBA course competition hot as demand grows
Kenya's universities are expanding their facilities and seeking collaborations to tap into a rapidly growing Masters in Business Administration market. The MBA has increasing currency among the working class of East Africa's biggest economy.
NIGERIA: Controversy over student dress codes
A debate in Nigeria over student dress codes rages on - running the gamut from student academic achievement, discipline, professionalism, conformity with social mores and clothes-as-political-statement to consumerism. While some university authorities argue that mode of dress is an important factor in determining student success or failure and should thus be subject to rules, others - especially in the humanities and social sciences - remain unconvinced.
CÔTE D'IVOIRE: Unesco bioethics chair installed
The official installation of Unesco's first francophone Africa chair of bioethics has taken place at the University of Bouaké, based in Abidjan.
AFRICA: Higher education is financially unsustainable
As a doorstop for one of the minor entrances to Valhalla, Financing Higher Education in Africa could serve nicely. This weighty tome is published by the World Bank and, with 60,000 words in five chapters spread over 200 pages - plus 25 figures, 26 tables and 29 boxes of summaries - the report is a mine of information. But its conclusion is gloomy.
SENEGAL: Students refuse to pay fees increase
PhD students at the Humanities and Social Sciences faculty of UCAD, the Université Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar, are under pressure from the authorities because they are refusing to pay "ridiculous" increases in fees introduced last year, reported Wal Fadjri of Dakar.
ANGOLA: Adventists to build university
The Seventh Day Adventist Church is to build a US$10 million university campus for 3,000 students in Huambo, reported Angola Press of Luanda.
AFRICA: Development aid must target knowledge
Development aid from donor countries to Africa is usually directed to issues identified as priorities in the home country's development agenda - issues such as HIV and Aids, poverty reduction, primary health care and food security, among others - according to Peter Maassen, professor of higher education at the University of Oslo. This kind of focus is often at the expense of high-level knowledge development such as that produced within the research culture of universities.
AFRICA: Lessons in history
Historians are working with Unesco and educationalists to try to develop a common African history syllabus, including the teaching approach and pedagogical materials. The ambitious project will initially focus on helping primary and secondary schools across the continent and, this coming year, an assessment will consider how universities in Africa could benefit from such work.
KENYA: Major plan to improve training institutions
Kenya is to spend US$56 million in donor funding to strengthen vocational and technical training countrywide, and help boost the country's skills base. The plan includes building new technical institutions and elevating some to national polytechnic status.
TUNISIA: Higher education key to new development plan
Tunisia has adopted the 12th development plan for 2010-14 with a focus on higher education. The aim is to transform the national economy into a model driven by innovation and knowledge, in a country ranked the most improved in technology-readiness in Africa.
ZIMBABWE: Scores of 'illegal' private colleges closed
Zimbabwe's government has closed 106 'illegal' private colleges countrywide, throwing thousands of students onto the streets. Higher and Tertiary Education Ministry Permanent Secretary Dr Washington Mbizvo said the colleges did not meet acceptable standards. At the same time, a United Nations agency rated the country as the most literate in Africa.
NIGERIA: Funding boost for tertiary institutions
Nigeria's government has started disbursing funds to selected public tertiary institutions to help them fast-track the development of teaching, research and infrastructure including student hostels. The extra-budgetary funding for six universities, three polytechnics and three colleges of education has been described as a step in the right direction.
AFRICA-CANADA: Boost for Next-Einstein centres
The Canadian government has awarded C$20 million (US$19.4 million) over the next four years to five centres of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences. The centres are spread across the continent and run through the AIMS-Next Einstein Initiative. They will train talented young African postgraduate researchers in mathematical sciences.
EGYPT: Students angry over admission curbs
Hossam Safwat has just passed secondary school certificate examinations with flying colours, scoring 92%. But he is not sure if he will be allowed to attend his dream college - a medical school - after Egypt's minister of higher education announced that minimum admission grades for the new academic year would be based on the average of those of the past five years.
WEST AFRICA: Regional centre for renewable energy
A regional centre to help develop renewable energy and promote workforce development in the 15 countries of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS , has opened in Praia, the capital of Cape Verde.
GREAT LAKES: Partnership signed with AUF
The French-speaking University Agency, AUF, and the Economic Community of the Great Lakes Countries have signed a partnership agreement to support higher education and research in the community's three member countries - Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda.
DR CONGO: Minister meets donors for reform funds
The Democratic Republic of Congo's Minister of Higher Education and Universities Professor Léonard Mashako Mamba has met funding agencies and other partners to present policies and reforms for which the government is seeking support, reported La Prospérité of Kinshasa.
SENEGAL: Students on the rampage - again
In the latest of a number of violent demonstrations students at the Université Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar went on the rampage this month, setting fire and causing other damage to university offices, and attacking the rector and a faculty dean with poison gas, said newspaper reports.
TUNISIA: Focus on employability in university guide
The focus is on rationalising higher education courses and on qualifications to respond to the needs of the labour market in the 2010 guide to university courses published by Tunisia's Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, reported the Agence Tunis Afrique Presse of Tunis.
SOUTH AFRICA: Career guidance for higher education
A career guidance campaign named after Nelson Mandela - and launched today on his 92nd birthday - aims to mobilise South Africans in the higher education and training sectors and in the professions to assist school pupils with information on universities and colleges. The idea is for better guidance to help students make appropriate study choices, optimise their job opportunities and reduce high drop-out rates.
AFRICA: Continental leadership centre launched
Africa's drive towards improving its governance has received a shot in the arm with the launch of a continental leadership training centre in Kenya's capital Nairobi. The African Leadership Centre will teach and mentor the next generation of leaders.
EGYPT: Japan's first Africa-Middle East university
Almost seven years after the idea was floated at an Arab-Japanese forum in Tokyo, Japan and Egypt last month celebrated the launch of the first Japanese university in Africa and the Middle East. The Egypt-Japan University for Science and Technology, E-JUST, is an Egyptian public university, in partnership with Japan, based near the coastal city of Alexandria.
AFRICA: New institute to boost university governance
A new institute to strengthen the governance and management of African universities has been officially inaugurated in Yaoundé, Cameroon. The Pan-African Institute of University Governance aims to improve and modernise practices for the competent running of higher education institutions throughout Sub-Saharan Africa.
AFRICA: Pan-African University close to starting
Kenya has been selected as the East African host of the planned Pan-African University, a specialised institution comprising a network of universities that is being created to help supply the continent's high-level human capital. This ends a five-month stalemate between countries in the region that had been squabbling over who the host would be.
NIGERIA: Accused Nigerian students deported
The Malaysian government has deported two Nigerian postgraduate students who were among 10 people from various countries detained in January for alleged links with the terrorist organisation Al-Qaeda. The Nigerians had been studying at the International Islamic University near the capital Kuala Lumpur.