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Universities selected for the African Higher Education Harmonisation and Tuning initiative

Date de publication: 
16/03/2012

At it's meeting in Dakar, Senegal (28-30 November 2011), the European Commission, the African Union Commission, the Association of African Universities, the regional associations responsible for higher education, representatives from Ministries and agencies launched the African Higher Education Harmonisation and Tuning initiative in Africa. Sixty universities across the continent will participate in five subject groups.

Tuning is a widely tested methodology for tuning educational structures - not systems - internationally. It was first developed in the framework of the European Union's Erasmus programme a decade ago. Experiences from the project were instrumental in the development of the European Higher Education Area. The Tuning approach stands out by not being invasive - it does not require universities to harmonise entire curricula but obliges them to find a common language, not only among each other but also with their surrounding community. This forces a critical review of a plethora of issues that are taken for granted in many traditional university settings, such as required generic and subject-specific competences, credit accumulation and transfer, approaches to learning, teaching and assessment, and the role of quality enhancement in the educational process.

A feasibility study presented in Nairobi in March this year concluded that a Tuning approach adapted by and for African higher education could also be relevant to the current harmonisation strategy in Africa. Five subject groups have been identified, which will each focus on one region and in one area. The majority of these will be from the same region, while each project must include at least one university from every other region, as well as one university that engages in distance learning. The five subjects and their focal regions are: medicine (North Africa), agriculture (Southern Africa), mechanical engineering (Central Africa), teacher education (West Africa) and civil engineering (East Africa).

The European and African Tuning and subject experts assessed 96 applications from 78 universities in 27 countries, a total of 60 of which are needed to set up the five subject groups of approximately 12 universities each.

As announced in the call for applications, selection criteria for the assessment were:

  • demonstrated national excellence of the subject area (innovation, teaching and learning employability, connection between research/teaching/industry);
  • participation in collaborative networking, showing a capacity for dialogue with other institutions working in on the same subject area;
  • given evidence of willingness and potential to contribute to foster development in higher education in the country/region;
  • commitment to implement the outcomes of the project in the field and extend to other subject areas;
  • whether the university has distance learning experience, in particular in the area concerned.

The second stage of the selection process was to assess the last criteria, namely that the group of universities selected should be as representative as possible showing country and regional balance as well as a representation of different types of institutions (including disadvantaged universities).

Proposals resulting from the first stage of the selection were presented to the continental and regional associations present at the meeting, the Association of African Universities (AAU), the Inter University Council of East Africa (IUCEA) and the Conseil Africain et Malaghe pour l'Enseignement Supérieur (CAMES) who were asked to comment.

Following intense discussion, a representative and balanced participation was found for all five thematic groups. The list of selected universities (including the names of the contact person within the institution) is the following:

Agriculture
Université d'Abomey-Calavi, Bénin – Contact: Guillaume Lucien Amadji
Université du Burundi, Burundi – Contact: Jean Ndimubandi
Université de Dschang, Cameroun – Contact: Christopher Tankou
University of Ghana, Ghana – Contact: Samuel Kwame Offei
Université Abobo-Adjamé, Côte d'Ivoire – Contact: Taky Hortense Atta Epse Diallo
Egerton University, Kenya – Contact: Alexander Kigunzu Kahi
University of Antananarivo, Madagascar – Contact: Jean Roger Emile Rasoarahona
University of Mauritius, Mauritius – Contact: Kamleshwar Boodhoo
Université Mohammed I, Maroc – Contact: Ahmed Elamrani
University of Agriculture, Nigeria – Contact: Yemi Akegbejo-Samsons
University of Ilorin, Nigeria – Contact: Olubunmi Abayomi Omotesho
Université Gaston Berger, Sénégal – Contact: Mariama Sene
Tshwane University of Technology, South Africa – Contact: Corinda Erasmus

Civil Engineering
Université Mouloud Mammeri de Tizi Ouzou, Algérie – Contact: Mohand Hamizi
University of Botswana, Botswana – Contact: Oagile Kanyeto
Université de Douala, Cameroun – Contact: Robert Nzengwa
Université de Kinshasa, République Démocratique du Congo – Contact: Lutimba Hubert Makengo
Addis Ababa University, AAiT, Ethiopia – Contact: Abebe Dinku Belay
Moi University, Kenya – Contact: Stanley Muse Shitote
Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria – Contact: Kabiru Bala
University of Pretoria, South Africa – Contact: Elma Inge Pieterse
Juba University, South Sudan- Contact:  James Jonathan Bango
University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania – Contact: Ignas Aloys Rubaratuka

Mechanical Engineering
Université de Yaoundé I, Cameroun – Contact: Danwe Raidandi
Université de Bangui, République Centre Africaine – Contact: Martin Panou
Institut Supérieur de Techniques Appliquées de Kinshasa, République Démocratique du Congo – Contact: Léonard Kabeya Mukeba
Cairo University, Egypt – Contact: Mohamed Mohamed Megahed Elneni
Jimma University, Ethiopia – Contact: Venkata Ramayya Ancha
Kwame Nkirumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana – Contact: Samuel Mensah Sackey
The Polytechnic, University of Malawi, Malawi – Contact: Moses Phenias Mngwapa Chinyama
Kigali Institute of Science and Technology, Rwanda – Contact: Venant Kayibanda
Ecole Nationale d'Ingénieurs de Tunis, Tunisie – Contact: Jalel Ben Abdallah
Copperbelt University, Zambia – Contact: Shadrick Chama

Medicine
Université d'Algers I, Algérie – Contact: Moussa Arrada
Université Marien Ngouabi, Congo – Contact: Jean Rosaire Ibara
Suez Canal University, Egypt – Contact: Ahmed Magdy Ibrahim A. El Gohary
Mekelle University, Ethiopia – Contact: Ephrem Tekle Lemango
University of Nairobi, Kenya – Contact: Charles Odero Omwandho
Université Cadi Ayyad de Marrakech, Maroc – Contact: Abdelhaq Alaoui Yazidi
University of Ibadan, Nigeria – Contact: Olusegun Olusina Akinyinka
Université Cheikh Anta Diop, Sénégal – Contact: Abdourahmane Dia
Cape Town University, South Africa – Contact: Jennifer Ramesar
Université de Monastir, Tunisie – Contact: Ali Chedli-Cancel

Teacher Education
Alexandria University, Egypt – Contact: Maysa Abbas Mohamed Amer
Adama University of Science and Technology, Ethiopia – Contact: Birhane Sime Geressu
Université Omar Bongo, Gabon – Contact: Théophile Maganga
Jomo Kenyatta University, Kenya – Contact: Stanley Gathogo Mukuria
University Eduardo Mondlane, Mozambique – Contact: Eugenia Flora  Rosa Cossa
University of Namibia, Namibia – Contact: Charmaine Benita Villet
University of Nigeria, Nigeria – Contact: Emmanuel Chukwugozie Osinem
National Open University of Nigeria, Nigeria – Contact: Babatunde Ipaye
Mogadishu University, Somalia – Contact: Mohamed Hassan Noor
University of the Western Cape, South Africa – Contact: Zubeida Desai
Open University of Tanzania, Tanzania – Contact: Honoratha Michael Kisenge Mushi
Makerere University, Uganda – Contact: Mugagga Anthony Muwagga
University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe – Contact: Rosemary Moyana

Coordination and management committee
Beatrice Njenga, African Union Commission, Head of Education Division
Deirdre Lennan, European Commission, DG Education and Culture
Julia Gonzalez Ferreras, Universidad de Deusto (Spain), Tuning co-coordinator
Robert Wagenaar, Universiteit Groningen (the Netherlands), Tuning co-coordinator
Olugbemiro Jegede, Association of African Universities, Secretary General
Damtew Teferra, International Network for Higher Education in Africa, Ethiopia
Margarete Schermutzki, Germany
Rotimi Ogidan, African Council for Distance Education, Kenya
Hanneke Van Bruggen, the Netherlands
Pablo Beneitone, Universidad de Deusto, Project Manager
Maria Ortis-Coronado López, Universidad de Deusto, Project Assistant
Bruno Kaimwa Maneno, Universidad de Deusto, Project Assistant
Agriculture: Olusola Bandele Oyewole (Nigeria) and Paul Ryan (Ireland)
Civil Engineering: Haddis Teklemariam (Ethiopia) and Karola Hahn (Germany)
Mechanical Engineering: Charles Awono Onana (Cameroun) and Béatrice Delpouve (France)
Medicine: Mahmoud Benali Abdellah (Algérie) and John Reilly (UK)
Teacher Education: Matete Madiba (South Africa) and Arlene Gilpin (UK)


The thematic groups met for the first time at the Université de Yaoundé I on 23-25 January 2012. The 2nd General meeting is scheduled for 15-17 May 2012 and will be held at the University of the Western Cape in South Africa, alongside the Study in Europe Fair being hosted by Cape Peninsula University of Technology.