BY STEPHEN CHADENGA
Higher and Tertiary Education minister Amon Murwira has said educational qualifications offered by institutions of higher learning that do not offer practical solutions to the development of the country’s economy will, in the long run, be phased out.
Speaking on Monday at the official launch of a four-day workshop on the framework to standardise the qualifications being held at the Midlands State University, Murwira (pictured) said the country could no longer afford to have programmes with fancy names that do not produce results.
He said his ministry was serious in developing standardised qualifications through the establishment of minimum bodies of knowledge and skills.
“All degrees must have clear bodies of knowledge and outcome,” Murwira said.
“Those without outcome will extinct themselves. We are so serious on the minimum bodies of knowledge and skill. That is why we instituted statutory instruments 132, 133 and 137 of 2018. If some do not comply, for sure, some certificates, degrees and diplomas shall phase themselves out.”
Murwira said government was moving towards crafting an education system that balances skills and knowledge.
He said learning institutions should emphasise more on practicals and less on theory in order to have a balance between teaching, research, community service, innovation and industrialisation.
“There is need for more practical and less talk,” he said.
“In fact, more time must also be allocated to group work to enable teamwork, which has been one of the weaknesses of our education system. In addition, more time should also be devoted towards research, innovation and industrialisation activities.”
Murwira reiterated the need to reduce the gap between the literacy rate and skills level.
“The results of our national critical skills audit (conducted by the Higher Education ministry) showed that although the national literacy rate is 94%, the national skills levels are at 38%,” Murwira said.
“Remember, production of goods and services can only happen when there is both knowledge and skill.” NewsDay