oa Interim : Interdisciplinary Journal - Enhancing the contribution of open and distance e-learning in higher education : implications for the central university of technology, Free State

Volume 9, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1684-498X



The aims of this article are to describe the findings of the author over the last decade regarding traditional distance education which eventually became Open and Distance E-Learning (ODEL) at the Central University of Technology, Free State (CUT) and secondly, the integration of Open Education Resources (OER) within ODEL. Up for debate in Perspectives in Education is the question whether ODEL and OER have not already stimulated a new constellation for higher education? After attending several international conferences of the International Organization for Open and Distance Education (lODE), the National Association for Open Distance Education of South Africa (NADEOSA), Higher Education Learning and Teaching Association of Southern Africa (HELTASA) as well as the South African Association for Research Development in Higher Education (SMRDHE), it became evident to the author that global trends forced a number of changes onto the South African higher education system.

Subsequently, the CUT also had to reconsider the role of distance education within the Free State and Northern Cape provinces where it operates. In 2004 for example, students enrolled for distance education countrywide already constituted between 4% and 32% at traditional face-to-face universities while for universities of technology the figure was only 4,74% (CHE, 2004:185-186). However, universities of technology since expanded tremendously in using ODEL.

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