Browsing by Author "Muller, Anneke"
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- ItemThe predictive value of Grade 12 and university access tests results for success in higher education(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2013-03) Muller, Anneke; Louw, Charmaine; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Dept. of Educational Psychology.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The final school examination is the gateway to higher education (HE) in most countries. Many students are however ill-prepared for HE because of a lack of quality education. Internationally, alternative access programmes are offered to address this problem. SciMathUS is the Science and Mathematics bridging programme at Stellenbosch University with the aim to allow educationally disadvantaged students whose Grade 12 results are below the standard entrance scores for admittance to HE, a second chance to improve their scores in Mathematics and Physical Sciences and then reapply for HE. SciMathUS follows a hybrid Problem-based Learning (PBL) philosophy, encouraging students to take responsibility for their own learning. While it is expected that performance in the final school examination correlates with performance in HE, this is questioned in the case of students who do not have access to good education and, as a result thereof, leave school with poor to low results. With the high demand for HE internationally, identifying students with the potential to succeed is however a huge challenge. Alternative measurements have been and are being considered and researched. The focus of this quantitative research is to determine whether Grade 12 results (Mathematics and Physical Sciences) and Stellenbosch University Access Test (AT) results could predict success in HE for students who first attended a bridging programme. Success was defined quantitatively and measured by the results obtained at the end of their first year in HE. Quantitative techniques were used to analyse the possible relationships between the different variables. The findings were that SciMathUS students managed to improve their Grade 12 Mathematics and Physical Sciences and AT significantly after attending the bridging programme. These results allowed them to participate in HE. No correlation could, however, be found between their NSC results or the AT results and their performance in HE. In spite of this, more than 40% of the students in this group passed their first year in HE with an average of more than 50%. Another almost 40% obtained between 30% and 50% and were therefore allowed to continue with their studies. In three faculties at Stellenbosch University, the former bridging programme students performed on par with their peers from the same schools who enrolled in HE directly after school.
- ItemSustainability and sustainable development as the making of connections : lessons for integrated development planning in South Africa(South African Planning Institute, 2006-12) Muller, AnnekeENGLISH SUMMARY : Africa’s many developmental problems (poverty and environmental degradation) have to be solved in a sustainable way. However, the complex, multi-dimensional concepts of ‘sustainability’ and ‘sustainable development’ (SD) can be interpreted in different and even clashing ways by various interest groups and are often used as ‘spin’ or buzzwords. The many potential meanings include SD as a process or end point/ goal, SD as inter-generational, intra-generational or inter-species equity, SD as separate ecologically or socially sustainable development or as holistic/ integrated economic, social, ecological, institutional, technological and physical development, SD as conservation (the Green Agenda), SD as development (the Brown Agenda); SD as Human Rights (the Red Agenda); SD as Human Development and as democracy/participative development. Even when a certain meaning of SD is promoted (such as for instance SD as inter-generational equity or SD as integration as in many South African policy documents), the practical application of the concept rarely conforms to the meaning that is promoted. One of the conceptions of sustainable development that has the greatest potential for future development in Africa, is that of a collaborative, communicative learning process of ‘making connections’ and linkages between various role-players -experts, disciplines (transdisciplinarity), communities; formal and informal businesses, politicians, officials and civil society (NGOs, CBOs) at local level. ‘Integrated Development Planning’ can potentially play a role in ‘making connections’ and in the construction of local meaning regarding SD. A recent study of completed IDP documents, however, showed a very simplistic and superficial understanding of the concepts of sustainability and SD. These plans also illustrated a lack of knowledge about the theory regarding communicative or collaborative planning and did not try to deal with the underlying conflict regarding the meaning of ‘development’ and therefore were little more than ‘lowest common denominator’ plans. This paper will analyse the meanings given to the concept of SD in IDP documents and from this will recommend some lessons for future planning.