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UJ receives R8.1m to drive TVET digital education

Staff Writer
By Staff Writer, ITWeb
Johannesburg, 22 Feb 2024
The University of Johannesburg has secured a grant to initiate a digital literacy programme for TVET educators.
The University of Johannesburg has secured a grant to initiate a digital literacy programme for TVET educators.

The University of Johannesburg (UJ) has secured a €400 000 (R8.1 million) European Union (EU) grant to spearhead a digital transformation project within South Africa's TVET sector.

The grant is funded by Erasmus+, an EU programme for education, training, youth and sport.

According to a statement, the project will focus on the challenges and opportunities presented by the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) tools like ChatGPT in education.

Professor Tankiso Moloi, research chair in 4IR at the Johannesburg Business School, UJ, comments: “In today's digital age, the landscape of education is rapidly evolving, requiring institutions to adapt to the changing demands of the workforce.

“Project Pro-TELDE (Promotion of Technology-Enhanced Learning and Digital Education) recognises the need for TVET institutions to equip their students with digital skills and competencies essential for success in the modern workplace.”

As AI reshapes the education and communication landscape, plagiarism is one of the biggest concerns for educators, as students are handing in AI-generated content as their own.

Moloi says Project Pro-TELDE aims to empower South African TVET lecturers in business and economics by identifying and utilising open digital sources for teaching, harnessing technology-enhanced learning (TEL) methods, and facilitation of lecturer-driven creation of digital teaching resources.

At the heart of the project is the establishment of an online repository housing validated TEL and digital teaching materials tailored specifically for South African educators in the field of business and economics, notes Moloi.

“We are excited to lead this project alongside local and international partners,” she says. “Partnerships are vital for the success of Project Pro-TELDE, with collaborating institutions being Central Johannesburg TVET College, Majuba TVET College, Vhembe TVET College, PIXEL (Italy), Universita degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza (Italy) and University of Peloponnese (Greece).”

Moloi concludes: “Project Pro-TELDE reflects UJ’s commitment to advancing digital education and empowering educators for success in the digital era, driving positive societal change through transformative educational initiatives.”

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