Re-orienting higher education curricular through service and community-based learning: A case of Kenya and south Africa
Mugambi, Mercy M.
Ejore, Paul E
Musalia, Florence G
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In the wake of transition from elitist to mass education , universities are under pressu re to enhance releva nce and excellence in provision of education. U niversity education in many African countries has failed to tailor its content and pedagogy to the social economic and cultural realities of its people and incapable of providing solutions to local problems. I nstead universities continue to uphold an education system that is certified on teaching rather than learning. Consequently, universities are producing people who consistently look to the west for models of development and are hence incapable of producing knowledge that matches their own social and physical environment. Education has been identified as the vehicle for individual development and country’s general productivity. The c urriculum offered in higher education institutions should have both theoretic al and practical aspects that ensure transfer of learning by graduates. Training attachment programmes in various faculties have been put in place to link higher education to society with the aim of strengthening developme nt of skills related to addressing issues affecting society. Today , these a ttachment programmes have their own issues which include ; in appropriate student placemen t, short period of attachment , limited finances to monitor , issues that personally affect students, and poor monitoring and man agement of the attachment programmes. All these issues limit the effectiveness of the attachment programmes . To make up for the gap in training programmes, Service and Community - Based Learning strategy can be incorporated in to university education This str ategy , models the idea that giving back to the community is an important university outcome, and that working with community partners is good preparation for citizenship, work, and life. This paper discusses the concept of service and community learning, t heo retical base for service and community - based learning, benefits of service learning and how it can be incorporated in to higher education curriculum with cases from African universities