Ul­ti­ma­tum for Limkok­wing

...univer­sity has un­til June 2017 to im­prove three pro­grammes

Lesotho Times - - News - Pas­cali­nah Kabi

THE Coun­cil on Higher Education (CHE) has given Limkok­wing Univer­sity of Cre­ative Tech­nol­ogy (LUCT) un­til June 2017 to en­sure three of its pro­grammes meet its set stan­dards.

Fail­ure to meet the stan­dards would re­sult in the univer­sity be­ing com­pelled to re­move the As­so­ciate De­gree in Jour­nal­ism and Me­dia, As­so­ciate De­gree in Broad­cast­ing (TV and Ra­dio) and As­so­ciate De­gree in Tele­vi­sion and Film Pro­duc­tion from its list of of­fered pro­grammes at the be­gin­ning of the 2017/18 aca­demic year.

CHE Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer, ‘Ma­tokelo Mot­seko, yes­ter­day con­firmed the de­vel­op­ment, say­ing LUCT was given the ul­ti­ma­tum on 18 Jan­uary 2016 af­ter the coun­cil eval­u­ated the univer­sity’s pro­grammes.

“It is true that three Limkok­wing pro­grammes were not ac­cred­ited by CHE,” Ms Mot­seko said, adding that there were set min­i­mum ac­cred­i­ta­tion stan­dards that ev­ery ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tion must com­ply with.

She said the stan­dards would de­ter­mine whether the pro­grammes war­ranted pro­ba­tion­ary ac­cred­i­ta­tion or not be­ing ac­cred­ited at all.

In both sce­nar­ios, Ms Mot­seko said, CHE would ex­pect the con­cerned in­sti­tu­tion to de­velop an im­prove­ment plan to en­sure they de­velop their pro­gramme within a given time­frame.

“You must un­der­stand that CHE uses a de­vel­op­men­tal ap­proach to sup­port ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tions and im­prove their stan­dards,” she said.

“We ask an in­sti­tu­tion to de­velop an im­prove­ment plan which shows how they would ad­dress ar­eas of con­cern.

“When CHE is sat­is­fied with the plan, we give the in­sti­tu­tion the green light to con­tinue im­ple­ment­ing the plan, and at times we set a re­sub­mit date to see if they have ad­dressed the con­cerns we have raised.”

Ms Mot­seko said the coun­cil would then de­cide if all stan­dards had been met or not.

“Pro­grammes that have not been ac­cred­ited will go through this process. I must fur­ther ex­plain that in in­stances where some pro­grammes are not ac­cred­ited, such in­sti­tu­tions would im­me­di­ately stop the in­take process,” she said.

“In the case of Limkok­wing, the in­sti­tu­tion will con­tinue to ad­mit new stu­dents for the 2016/17 aca­demic year.

“How­ever, if they have not met the stand- ards by the end of 2016/17, they will be forced to im­me­di­ately stop the in­take un­til they have met the set stan­dards.”

Ms Mot­seko re­as­sured LUCT stu­dents that the three pro­grammes were still valid and met the re­quire­ments of their 2013 re­view.

“Var­i­ous in­sti­tu­tions of­fer sim­i­lar cour­ses with sim­i­lar names, but their ap­proach and strate­gies dif­fer,” she said.

“It may also hap­pen that they pro­duce dif­fer­ent grad­u­ates. What I am try­ing to say is that peo­ple have dif­fer­ent strate­gies and there are ar­eas where they have strengths and weak­ness and nat­u­rally in­sti­tu­tions are ex­pected to im­prove.

“In 2016/17 they will con­tinue ad­mit­ting new stu­dents but in 2017/18, the ex­pec­ta­tion is that they will only ad­mit stu­dents if they have ad­dressed the ar­eas of con­cern.”

On his part, LUCT Cor­po­rate Sec­re­tary, Ad­vo­cate Tefo Macheli, con­firmed re­ceiv­ing the ul­ti­ma­tum say­ing: “We re­ceived a let­ter dated 18 Jan­uary 2016 in­form­ing us of CHE’S de­ci­sion not to ac­credit th­ese three pro­grammes as they didn’t meet set stan­dards.

“How­ever, the Min­is­ter of Education and Train­ing (Dr Ma­hali Phamotse) made a de­ci­sion that the univer­sity should con­tinue to of­fer th­ese cour­ses while work­ing on the ar­eas of con­cern raised by CHE.”

He said they were work­ing hard to ad­dress the ar­eas of con­cern, and would fully im­ple­ment the rec­om­men­da­tions to en­sure the pro­grammes meet all the set stan­dards.

“We are com­mit­ted to work­ing with CHE and are go­ing to ad­dress the ar­eas of con­cern raised in their re­port. We will ef­fect changes on our pro­grammes as soon as pos­si­ble,” Ad­vo­cate Macheli said.

“How­ever, this does not mean that grad­u­ates of the three pro­grammes would be hold­ing lesser qual­i­fi­ca­tions com­pared to those who will see th­ese changes.

“It sim­ply means CHE wants us to en­sure that our pro­grammes meet the stan­dards of the chang­ing world.”

Adv Macheli also as­sured mem­bers of the pub­lic that LUCT qual­i­fi­ca­tions were valid and could be used to seek em­ploy­ment or seek ad­mis­sion at ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tions in both South Africa and out­side the south­ern African re­gion.

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