n South African Journal of Higher Education - Distance education as a function of African community : perspectives on higher education

Volume 18, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



This article will demonstrate how the move from correspondence education to open and distance learning has been as a result of changing epistemology. It will be argued that the concept of <I>community</I> in an African context provides a useful theoretical framework for establishing communities of learning, and that the practice of open and distance learning could serve the needs of such communities. Knowledge as social responsibility serves this ideal, which can only work when the university forms part of a community; this requires that higher education be deinstitutionalised. The university will manifest its many identities through the people who make up any distance education institution and who collaborate in creating meaningful learning opportunities for learners. Learning is redefined as the evolving narrative of the self in relation to others and the curriculum as the collected stories we are told.

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