Flexible Learning and Teaching: Looking Beyond the Binary of Full-time/Part-time Provision in South African Higher Education
This paper engages with literature on flexible learning and teaching in order to explore whether it may be possible, within the South African context, to have flexible learning and teaching provide a third way which goes beyond the current practice of full-time/part-time provision. This binary classification of students is a proxy for day-time/after-hours delivery. The argument is made that effective, flexible learning and teaching requires a fundamental shift in thinking about learning and teaching in higher education that moves us beyond such binaries. The paper proposes that in order to ensure access and success for students, ‘common knowledge’ (Edwards, 2010) will need to be co-constructed which understands flexible learning and teaching in ways which will meet needs of a diversity of students, including working students. It will require ‘resourceful leadership’ (Edwards, 2014) within the university that recognises, enhances and gives purpose to the capability of colleagues at every level of the systems they lead. Also, it will require the building of ‘common knowledge’ between certain sectors of universities and particular workplaces.
Keywords: common knowledge, flexible learning and teaching, full-time and part-time
studies, higher education, lifelong learning, resourceful leadership, working students.
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