Two recently held curriculum innovation workshops demonstrate the opportunities for regional collaboration and interaction that build capacity for creating climate and development solutions in higher education in southern Africa. Leigh Cobban and Leslie Ashburner of the African Climate and Development Initiative at the University of Cape Town look back at the process of developing a Masters curriculum in climate change.
The University of Cape Town’s African Climate & Development Initiative (ACDI) was the lead partner in a consortium of southern African universities that recently developed a Master’s curriculum in ‘Climate Change and Sustainable Development’. The curriculum marks a pioneering step towards inter- and transdisciplinary collaboration among academic institutions in the region. There was an overwhelming show of interest when a call was put out for institutions to attend workshops to support the uptake of the new curriculum.
84 delegates from 22 universities attended the workshops, which were held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Harare, Zimbabwe. The five-day workshops were designed and delivered by a team of facilitators comprising the curriculum authors, academic development experts and other engaged stakeholders, led by UCT’s Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT). The overarching aims of the workshops were for institutional teams to get to grips with both the content and the innovative teaching, learning and assessment approaches which are embedded in curriculum.