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How specialist research contributes to South Africa’s academic excellence

There are many factors at play when it comes to the level of academic excellence achieved and its contribution to the country.

Education is an integral part of every society as it directly influences the country’s economic development as well as the economic growth. As a powerful agent of change, access to quality education also improves the health and livelihoods of a country’s citizens, contributes to social stability, and is the driving force for long-term economic growth. Without access to quality educational institutions, both countries and individuals will surely suffer.

The wonder of academic excellence in South Africa’s higher education institutions is often overlooked and frequently overshadowed by concerns around failure, underachievement, and the poor quality of education. Although this may be true for a large number of South African educational institutions, it is not the truth about them all. There are many factors at play when it comes to the level of academic excellence achieved by the various educational institutions within South Africa, and one of them is the use of specialist educational research within these institutions to be able to achieve academic excellence.

What is educational research?

In an effort to expand the well of knowledge, educational research must become a priority for both educational institutes and governing bodies as it plays an integral role in the overall development of educational institutions and their learning programs, and policies. But what exactly is educational research?

Educational research can be defined as a type of systematic investigation that applies practical methods to solving challenges in education. Adopting rigorous and well-defined scientific processes, the process of educational research gathers and analyses data for problem-solving and knowledge development within educational institutions. Educational research allows us to make use of a variety of different disciplines, such as psychology, sociology, anthropology, and philosophy to obtain solutions to problems that relate to students’ education and learning, teachers’ training and teaching styles, as well as teaching methods and classroom dynamics. The ultimate aim of educational research is to provide knowledge and insight into the education procedures that will allow educators to achieve their educational goals through the most effective

methods by improving both teaching and learning practices. Educational research focuses on answering questions to improve learner motivation, development, and classroom management.

Implementing effective educational research will benefit all those involved; from the students, lecturers, and even the people of the country. This is due to the fact that education is one of the main driving factors when it comes to economic development and growth as well as social well being. An educated population is a strong population, and with quality educational institutions in place, it can drive a country from poverty to prosperity. The first step in acquiring academic excellence is to start from the ground up with educational research to better understand where the education system may be failing. From here, it will be a lot easier to implement processes to deal with the shortcomings in the education system, and adapt a way forward from the research available to provide solutions that will work.

Specialist research in higher educational institutions

Higher education institutions, as well as research institutions, have a key role to play in generating high-quality scientific evidence for shaping education processes and policies, public health policies, and public infrastructure policies, among others. The importance of quality educational research can not be highlighted enough as it directly shapes the economy and the country you live in.

By sourcing and using industry experts to conduct specialist research in their chosen fields, educational institutions in South Africa will reap the benefits and continue to be well on their way to achieving academic excellence across the board. Specialist research in South Africa contributes to academic excellence in the country by utilising the most effective methods in the education sector in order to give their students the very best possible education in their chosen field of studies.

The use of specialist research in South Africa’s universities

By improving educational research in South Africa, educational institutions  will contribute to South Africa’s academic excellence for years to come. On top of educational research, South African educational institutions have been making use of specialised research in order to give their students sought-after industry insight and real-world knowledge that they can apply straight out of university.

Choosing the right lecturers, the number of students allowed in each class, and how the course will be presented to both prospective students and current ones, along with many other factors, all positively contribute to the academic excellence in South Africa’s higher education institutions. Utilising industry experts to research course prospectus will allow higher education institutions to constantly adapt the course curriculum to ensure that their students leave with not just a piece of paper in the form of a degree, but real-world knowledge and experience that will help kickstart their careers in their chosen field from the moment they leave university.

How specialist research contributes to South Africa’s academic excellence

By utilising industry experts to conduct specialised research, universities can set themselves apart from the rest and achieve academic excellence in their own right. This is due to the fact that achieving academic excellence is no easy task, but by using the tools available and those you have to seek out, universities will be able to help both their students as well as their economy create growth opportunities by helping to provide the country with a well-educated workforce.

How universities that make use of specialist research contribute to South Africa’s academic excellence

  • By providing students with the best education possible through intensive research into industries and industry needs.
  • Continually adapting their curriculum to the ever-changing industries and business practices.
  • By utilising data to find new ways to improve the education system.
  • Using psychological and sociological techniques to get the best out of their students.
  • Maintaining student progress by utilising data.

Which university applies specialist research?

UCT and GetSmarter have pioneered the way of utilising specialist research in order to make their curriculums the very best they can be. Constantly adapting to change, GetSmarter is an online learning portal with over 10 years’ experience in developing premium online short courses from some of the world’s leading educational institutions.

Delivering top-quality market-led online courses, such as the Online Operations Management Short Course, that equip working professionals with the expertise required to upskill or kickstart a completely new career, GetSmarter delivers working professionals with outstanding courses that are respected by industry experts. Using a data-driven approach, GetSmarter analyses future skills requirements within each industry and ensures that each of its courses addresses this need in a prompt manner. When choosing to study at GetSmarter, you can be rest assured that you are getting the best education possible in today’s ever-changing business environment, and that you will be able to apply your newly learned skills as soon as you are done with your course.

Final words

In recognition of the role that specialist research plays in sustaining academic excellence, South Africa’s top educational institutions use specialist research to achieve said excellence. Without the use of specialised research, education institutions are at risk of teaching outdated methodologies and not utilising the appropriate classroom management techniques in order to get the best out of their students. Adding specialist research into education institutions will not only benefit the students but also the lecturers and the economy. After all, the best way to learn is straight from the experts.

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