n Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe - Problematiek rondom die begrip "transformasie" in hoër onderwys in Suid-Afrika

Volume 41, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0041-4751


This article examines problems surrounding the conceptualization of 'transformation' in higher education in the current South African context. The term defies any fixed and final interpretation, as it has become tainted with various personal, emotional, political and ideological overtones. At best one can purport to identify certain internal and external forces conducive to the process of transformation, indicating how they are currently being deployed. The authors briefly outline nine major issues in this regard, while a parallel scenario serves to illustrate the complexities involved when different perspectives come into play. These problems are exacerbated by the challenging phenomenon of diversity, which in itself points to a wide range of both positive and negative connotations. The matter becomes even more problematic when cognisance is taken of the views held by alumni and beneficiaries who are in favour of retaining the status quo. In conclusion a call is made for scientifically sound and clearly articulated guidelines as to the character and implementation of transformation, as well as for an honest and balanced reflection on the need for a total paradigm shift as opposed to a continuing process of change and adjustment.

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