National Higher Diploma : Experts Fine-tune Reform Programme

A workshop with professionals in the milieu, on the teaching programme and syllabuses on the course, took place last Friday in Yaounde.

Deans and proprietors of Private Higher Education Institutions, experts in the socio-professional milieu alongside those from the Ministry of Higher Education last Friday brainstormed on how teaching programmes and syllabuses of the Higher National Diploma (HND) could be improved upon. Opening the workshop on behalf of the Minister of Higher Education was the interim Secretary General, Professor Wilfred Gabsa who said the process to homologate educational programmes in the Higher National Diploma (HND), which started at the Ministry of Higher Education in 2015, is expected to be completed by August, this year.

Professor Gabsa said the workshop is out to delimit the sectors and specialities of an HND training firmly anchored to the real needs of the job market, contribute to the production of a referential of the generic and specific skills required by professionals for each HND sector and draw up HND curricula that meet the requirements of the Bachelor, Master and Doctorate (BMD) system as required by the new University Governance Policy. Prof Gabsa said when the reform will be completed, it will permit academic mobility, transferability of credit and ensure that an HND holder, which is an advanced level plus two years higher education training, to evolve into a bachelor degree and master degree programmes.

Specifically, the experts examined the teaching programmes in the field of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Engineering and Technology; Management, Business Studies and Legal careers and Tourism, Hotel Management, Education and Communication. With regards to educational programmes, they are designed based on the purpose of the training, the skills sought, the career opportunities, the course description and content, the necessary didactic material, the setting and preparation of the examination.

Under examination was also the teaching unit (UE) of each course. This is an identifiable group of modules (themes/subjects) called principal elements that are scientifically coherent and specific. These are mandatory/obligatory UEs and UEs. The experts also looked at the codification of the UE, the credit value or unit of account that makes it possible to quantity the total workload required for a student to achieve the training objective of an UE. The hourly volume of a credit and the mode of teaching were also examined.

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