Simnikiwe Hlatshaneni
Premium Journalist
5 minute read
1 Sep 2020
7:25 pm

Is the traditional University degree dead?

Simnikiwe Hlatshaneni

Are traditional university degrees able to keep up in the world of distance learning and online education, or will they be overtaken by technology and the need for job-ready applicants who thrive in the digital space?


Covid-19 has rocked traditional academia and while experts suggest they are in trouble, universities insist they are adapting and leading the evolution of learning and training towards an online-based future. Prof Wim de Villiers, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of Stellenbosch University recently penned an op-ed about the challenges and possible good outcomes of a post-Covid-19 university. In it, he notes that universities have come under severe financial pressure across all the revenue streams, including state subsidies, student fees, research contracts, philanthropic donations and commercial income. The declining economy, he concludes, has seen belts tightened across the board. But, speaking to The...