AAU / e/merge Africa survey on elearning uptake and professional development needs – take part today!

This survey is now closed and we would like thank all who took part. We are currently looking at the data obtained and will share this later during the year. If you were one of the lucky ones who won a prize, please note we are currently processing all prize entries and will send during this month. If you indicated that you would like to convene an e/merge Africa webinar, seminar or workshop we will contact you during the next couple of months.

Completing the AAU/ e/merge Africa survey is a powerful act of participation in growing e-learning capacity across our continent. We need your help with this. The survey results will help the Association of African Universities and e/merge Africa to design programmes of vibrant, highly relevant professional development activities which draw on the depth of expertise in the network and support your effectiveness as an e-learning practitioner or researcher. To do this we need good up to date information from hundreds of colleagues like you across African higher education. After completion you will be able to enter a draw for iTunes, Google Play and Amazon vouchers. The survey closed on 15 July 2016!

This survey is a project of the Association of African Universities in partnership with the e/merge Africa professional development network. The survey is designed to provide information about e-learning uptake as well as the professional development needs and priorities of e-learning practitioners and researchers in African Higher Education Institutions. 

The survey has 33 questions and will take up to 30 minutes to complete. All information supplied will be anonymous and no potentially identifying details will be shared. At the beginning of the survey you will be asked to confirm your consent to participate. After completion of the survey you will be able to enter a draw for prizes of US$25 and US$50 Amazon.com, iTunes and Google Play vouchers.
Please click here to take part in the survey. Please forward to colleagues based at higher education institutions within Africa. Our survey is also available in French, Portuguese and Arabic.




Thursday 5 May 2016 at 1 pm (SAST)

Thank you to all who took part in this short seminar either at the University of Cape Town or online via Adobe Connect. The recording of this session is available here

To enable working individuals and other non-traditional students with limited means and located in outlying areas, to advance their qualifications, traditional offerings should be interrogated. Alternative pathways to qualification must be sought, employing thoughtful learning design process and optimising available technology that is accessible, practical and sustainable.

In response to the need to transform the architectural profession, to promote broader access and address issues of affordability and proximity to the campus,

an existing curriculum was redesigned. The new blended BTech programme in Architectural Technology is offered through a University-Industry collaboration by means of on-campus block release, office-based mentoring and online engagement. The studio methodology, which is closely associated with architectural education, remains at the centre of the learning agenda, although through different modalities and implemented across time and space.

In this presentation, lessons learnt from a pilot programme that successfully produced its first graduates in April this year, is shared.


Jolanda Morkel is a senior lecturer in the Department of Architectural Technology and Interior Design at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology where she is also busy with doctoral studies, focusing on the use of technology to mediate studio-based learning. She heads up a blended programme in architecture, optimising workplace and online learning, together with workshop format on-campus blocks, to promote access and transformation of the architectural profession.

Change Maker: From Township to Texas and Next?

Monday 25 April – Friday 29 April 2016 

Join us for the webinar today at 1 pm (SAST This is 12 Abuja / 2 pm Nairobi). Please go to the e/merge Africa Adobe Connect meeting room 1) Choose Log in 2) Provide your name and sign into room 

Tembinkosi Qondela had an idea, “to digitalise Khayelitsha”, a poor township in Cape Town, South Africa, where digital literacy levels are low and many find it difficult to make a simple photocopy or send a basic email.

In 2015 this idea took him on an adventure from Khayelitsha to Austin Texas, USA – 14,000 kilometres away – where he received the Dewey Winburne Community Service Award, an initiative of the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival. Tembinkosi’s journey to Austin began at the Whizz ICT Resource Centre which he started in 2008 with no technological background and after leaving his job as a Research Assistant in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town. The centre assists approximately 100 individuals’ everyday with,  amongst other things, photocopying, creating CV’s, job applications and general end user training, things many of us take for granted. Whizz ICT was one of ten nominees that year and the only one from the African continent.

Dewey Winburne one of the original co-founders of SXSW, an event which is a launching pad for new content and offers a unique convergence of original music, independent films, and emerging technologies, is remembered as a humanitarian and true visionary of the New Media Revolution. Despite winning numerous awards Dewey remained committed to education through ICT, therefore, the award given in his name recognises recipients for their use of digital technology to help others. Each recipient receives a $1000 grant, complimentary registration to SXSW and an opportunity to showcase their work to the wider SXSW community.

When asked about the impact of the award on his organisation, Tembinkosi responded, “tremendous” and explained that the entire community celebrated for four weeks! The recognition brought greater exposure and standing to the organisation (and himself), both within Khayelitsha and abroad; important as Whizz ICT has no marketing budget and relies purely on word-of-mouth advertising. The award allowed Tembinkosi to take part in a roadshow informing the wider community about his service and the award and inviting them to celebrate with him; he fully believes that the award is not merely an honour for him but the entire community. Internally the award had a positive impact on staff who were now newly motivated.

Exposure to the SXSW community allowed him the opportunity to form useful connections and also introduced him to innovative ways in which ICT is being used to improve education in the USA and Europe, skills he hopes to bring home. Tembinkosi believes that international connections are extremely important to his business as technology is constantly changing and they bring in expertise and knowledge about new developments. A previous American volunteer at the Centre managed to organise a training session by Facebook at Whizz ICT and the web-development course currently offered by the Centre is being run by a company in Nicaragua; these examples demonstrate practically the value of relationships.

Fully aware of the challenges facing developing nations such as South Africa and much of the continent, Tembinkosi’s mission is to solve people’s needs through ICT; an idea he does not believe is being supported enough by ICT developers globally. Much development is “nice to have”, but he questions the impact it will have in solving the basic needs of individuals. He motivates with an example of a past student who went from working part time in the retail industry with no benefits to having a secure administration position within the South African Department of Labour. She credits the computer course she took at Whizz ICT with providing her with the opportunity to change her life.

Tembinkosi will be discussing the importance of social innovation and digital literacy in addressing the needs of the most disadvantaged in our country and abroad. He will comment on the impact of international recognition on an organisation and answer questions about branching out and making a real difference in society. Register below to listen to his inspirational journey online and to discuss during the rest of the week. If you are at or near the University of Cape Town we invite you to join us Monday 25 April at the Centre for Innovation in Teaching and Learning (CILT), PD Hahn Building, Upper Campus

Tembinkosi Qondela co-founded the Whizz ICT Centre, Khayelitsha, South Africa which is an organisation that seeks to facilitate the use of information communication technology (ICT) tools, for development efforts of poor communities. Whizz ICT Centre has identified the use of lack of access to information as a significant contributor to marginalization of the youth which compose of the majority of South African society. Whizz has put up a youth centre which gives access to youth, computer training as well as other ICT related services.