NATIONAL NEWS - Universities have been requested not to over-enrol in 2020 to ensure the appropriate infrastructure and human resources for the number of students in the system, the quality of teaching and learning and the sustainability of the university system.
Higher Education, Science and Technology Minister, Dr Blade Nzimande, made the call last week when he was briefing the media on the implications of matriculation results on the Post School Education and Training sector in South Africa.
The briefing focused mainly on the availability of spaces and opportunities at South African universities and colleges.
Nzimande announced that this year, the country’s 26 public universities will provide access to approximately 201 042 new entrants wishing to pursue their studies across all general, technical and professional fields, including Business and Management, Science, Engineering, Agriculture and Technology, Humanities, Social Sciences, the Arts and Education.
The Minister explained that all universities were required to consider their enrolments in terms of the fiscal realities and constraints, and to plan realistically, making sure that the enrolment numbers targeted, resulted in the optimum number of new students entering the system for the first time in 2020.
He added that the universities should be fully supported through available infrastructure and sufficient qualified lecturers and academics, and within the constraints of the funding available for bursaries for poor and working-class students.
“The enrolment plan provides details of the enrolment targets for all fields of study, and specifically for those scarce skills fields that support our country’s growth, such as Engineering Sciences, Life and Physical Sciences, Animal and Human Health Sciences, and Teacher Education,” Nzimande said.
He noted that while the overall number of spaces in the university system for 2020 is 201 041, the universities are expected to enrol a two per cent range of this figure.