SARUA’s aim is thus to strengthen the leadership and institutions of higher education in the southern African region
Population: 47.391 million 2006)
GDP per capita: US$5,358 (2006)
Human Development Index (HDI): 121 (2007/08)
Unemployment Levels: 24.3% (2007)
Key Economic Sectors: Services and tourism; mining; manufacturing; agriculture, forestry and fishing; and utilities
Principal Exports: Metals, gold, diamonds, machinery and transport equipment HIV & AIDS Prevalence: 18.09% (2007 estimate)
Gross Primary Enrolment Ratio: 107 (2002)
Gross Secondary Enrolment Ratio: 90 (2002)
Gross Tertiary Enrolment Ratio: 15 (2006)
Source: Country context data was obtained from a variety of sources: (CIA, 2008; SADC, 2008; UNAIDS, 2008; UNDP, 2008; UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 2006)
AS WITH most Southern African countries, present-day South Africa was or tens of thousands of years the exclusive home of the stone-age Khoisan and their forebears. Indeed, it is now firmly established that places like the Makapan’s Valley in Limpopo Province and Sterkfontein in Gauteng are among the earliest ‘cradles of humankind’. Hominid remains date back several million years in the former site, while the latter has yielded rich evidence of the Australopithecus genus, an important linkage in the slow evolution of Homo sapiens...Read more.
National Education System Overview
Formal education in South Africa is categorized according to three levels – General Education and Training (GET), Further Education and Training (FET), and Higher Education (HE). Education qualifications in South Africa are framed within the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) and the Higher Education Qualifications Framework (HEQF).
Source: (Council on Higher Education, 2007a; Department of Education, 2008)
Transformation since 1994 has been characterized by a new system of higher education, with increased participation by all sectors of society, greater institutional responsiveness to policy imperatives, and new cooperative relations and partnerships between higher education and the broader society. South Africa has reviewed and updated many education policies since 1994, (see www.education.gov.za for a complete listing).
Higher Education Legislation
The Higher Education Act 101 of 1997
This Act has been amended on several occasions since 1997, but essentially provides for regulation of higher education including the establishment of a Council on Higher Education.
Higher Education Qualifications Framework (HEQF)
Establishes common parameters and criteria for the design of qualifications and facilitates articulation across the system through ensuring comparability of qualifications.
List of Statutory Bodies in the Higher Education Sector
The Council on Higher Education (CHE)
Established in terms of the Higher Education Act, No 101 of 1997, the CHE is an independent statutory body in operation since May, 1998. The CHE has responsibility for advising the Minister of Education on higher education matters, and also plays a key role in quality assurance in higher education. The Higher Education Quality Committee (HEQC) is a permanent sub-committee of the CHE, also provided for in the Higher Education Act of 1997. The HEQC has a mandate to promote quality assurance, audit institutional quality assurance mechanisms, and accredit programmes of higher education (Council on Higher Education, 2007b)
South Africa Qualifications Authority (SAQA)
SAQA was constituted through the SAQA Act of 1995. SAQA is a body made up of 29 members appointed by the Ministers of Education and Labour. SAQA is responsible for the development and implementation of the NQF (SAQA, 2007).
Public Expenditure on Education as a % of Gross National Income (GNI)
% Education budget allocated to higher education
Loan/Grant scheme in place
Source: SARUA (2008) – Pillay report
Science and Technology
R&D Intensity [The ratio of Gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) to Gross Domestic Product (GDP)]
ISI Output (Number of papers published in the 7500+ journals of the ISI Web of Science)