TANZANIA Commission for Universities (TCU) has re-accredited the foundation course programme offered by the Open University of Tanzania (OUT) following a span of two years in discussions on how it should be structured to meet the required standards.
Addressing reporters at OUT headquarters at Kinondoni Biafra in Dar es Salaam, the University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Elifas Bisanda said that the foundation programme was crucial not only as a preparation course for those pursuing various degrees, but also helps the country to realise its industrialisation drive in the Fifth Phase Government.
“Only five per cent of the country’s population has access to university degrees, while developed countries like South Korea have 95 per cent being educated to the university levels,” added the Vice Chancellor.
He further said that Tanzania has competent vocational educational graduates, and still more degree holders are needed, adding: “South Korea has several universities and its youths also join vocational training, a milestone for it to develop and create more skilled workforce in the market.”
In July 2016, the TCU banned all foundation programmes offered at various universities countrywide, citing some to be substandard. In the declaration, he hinted that the new set standards would not consider students who have completed Secondary School and a one-year Certificate Course from any recognised university to join any degree programmes, unless they have completed not less than three years in institutions of Diploma Course(s) and acquired not less than 3.0 GPA.
The Open University of Tanzania was established in 1992 to help those who had not acquired the opportunity to continue with higher education, but opt for distance learning, after sitting and passing examination in areas where the students study on their own without being out of workplaces in flexible timetables.