Welcome to Stellenbosch University

Department of Health Professions Education (DHPE)​

Our team

Susan new.jpg

Director: DHPE

Professor S​​usan van Schalkwyk

+27 21 938 9874​

Professor Susan van Schalkwyk, MPhil, PhD., is the ​​Director of the Deaprtment for Health Professions Education in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at Stellenbosch University. Research interests cover a range of topics related to learning and teaching in the health professions, with a specific focus on strengthening postgraduate studies and academic writing. Much of her work is informed by the principles of transformative learning theory, with current projects intentionally looking to adopt a social justice agenda. Susan is an SU Teaching Fellow and a Fellow of the International Association of Medical Educationalists (AMEE). She has authored or co-authored more than 80 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters.

Edwardene Marais

Senior Secretary: DHPE

Mrs Edwardene Marais

+27 21 938 9054
+27 21 938 9046

Mrs Edwardene Marais, is the senior secretary for the DHPE and provides administrative support to the Director and other senior personnel of the DHPE. She is responsible for the day-to-day running of the Department as well as organising various workshops and seminars.

Lorraine Louw

Administrative Coordinator: Postgraduate Programmes

Mrs Lorraine Louw

+27 21 938 9047
+27 21 938 9046

Mrs Lorraine Louw, has a Medical Secretarial Certificate from Tygerberg Technical College and is the administrative co-ordinator of the MPhil in HPE. She provides administrative and secretarial support to the MPhil and PhD students in HPE.


Elize Archer

Associate Professor

Associate Professor Elize Archer

+27 21 938 9647​ 

Associate Professor Elize ArcherMPhil, PhD., is a professional nurse with an Honours degree in Critical care. She is also the head of the Simulation and Clinical Skills Centre (SCSU). This facility hosts state-of-the-art equipment and is used by all the departments in the faculty. Furthermore, she is involved in faculty development initiatives that​​ focus mainly on clinical supervision and the OSCE as a tool for clinical assessment. With regards to research, Elize is a previous SU Teaching Fellow and also the chairperson of  the Southern African Association of Health Educationalists (SAAHE). Her research is focused on the teaching and learning of patient-centredness and empathic communication skills in undergraduate health professions students. She has supervised a number of Masters in Health Professions Education students in other areas of HPE as well. 

Simone Titus

Associate Professor

Associate Professor Simone Titus


Simone Titus-Dawson is an Associate Professor in the Centre for Health Professions Education in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at Stellenbosch University. She holds a PhD in Education from the University of Cape Town where she developed an interest in the use of emerging technologies to foster cross cultural interaction, learning, and engagement in higher education. She also has a key interest in driving knowledge through digital transformation by developing inclusive and sustainable spaces in the areas of health professions education. As part of national imperatives, Simone considers how some of the global, regional and national priorities linked to Sustainable Development Goals, specifically SDG 3 (Health) and SDG 4 (Education) are taken up through research that focuses on the nexus between health innovation and education. She was the recipient of the Black Academic Advancement Programme where her specific research focus is on the use of Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality on Health Sciences Education. She is the current Chairperson of the Western Cape Region Branch of the Southern African Association of Heath Educationists (SAAHE), She is a member of the Towards Unity for Health (TUFH) network and the African Interprofessional Education Network (AfrIPEn) organisations. She currently serves on the Digital Dialogue project team for Higher Education, Learning and Teaching Association of Southern Africa (HELTASA).

Rhoda Meyer


Dr Rhoda Meyer

Dr Rhoda Meyer, MPhil, PhD​., is a lecturer at the Department of Health Professions Education. She manages the faculty development portfolio and is a lecturer on the MPhil for Health Professions Education Programme. She is an operating room nurse by clinical background and has worked in various government and private hospitals both locally and internationally. She completed a degree in Nursing Education and Management in 2011, her MPhil in HPE in 2014 and her PhD in HPE in 2020. Her research interest includes learning in the clinical environment, as well as a focus on curriculum development with specific reference to the role of the environment in teaching and learning.


Dr Anthea Hansen

+27 21 938 9190​​​​

Dr Anthea Hansen, is a lecturer in the Department of Health Professions Education. She holds a PhD in Health Professions Education from Stellenbosch University, a MPhil in Disability Studies and BSc Audiology from the University of Cape Town. Her interests are in the areas of social justice through education, socially just pedagogies, transformative learning, interprofessional education and collaborative practice, child health and disability studies. Her PhD research topic focused on the undergraduate medical students' experiences of social responsiveness in the curriculum. ​


Mrs San Schmutz

+27 21 938 9190​​

Mrs San Schmutz, MPhil, is a full-time lecturer across the Division of Physiotherapy and the Department of Health Professions Education at SU. She graduated as physiotherapist from SU in 1997 and obtained her MPhil in HPE (SU) in 2017. She is involved in both undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, and is the clinical coordinator for final year physiotherapy students. She does research in both areas with a main interest in clinical training and has fulfilled various roles related to clinical training over the years. Her interest lies in development of the clinical training platform as well as the engagement for both clinical educators and students. ​

Mariette Volschenk

Senior Lecturer

Dr Mariette Volschenk

+27 21 938 9447

Dr Mariette Volschenk (MPhil, PhD) is a senior lecturer at the Department of Health Professions Education in the FMHS. She is the programme leader of the MPhil and PhD in Health Professions Education (HPE) programmes. Her research interests include postgraduate supervision, identity-learning, critical digital pedagogy, and the development of mastersness in HPE masters programmes. She has a special interest in using narrative and art-based approaches to explore identity and complexity in HPE. Mariette is an SU Teaching Fellow, and her fellowship project focuses on the cultivation of Mastersness in a hybrid learning interprofessional coursework master’s programme at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences​.

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Learning Designer

Ms Aayshah Jaffer​

+27 21 938 9190​

Ms Aayshah Jaffer, is a member of the Learning Technologies team based in Cape Town. She graduated from UNISA in 2017; after which she​ completed a course on Instructional Design through the University of the Witwatersrand. Within the Learning Technologies team, she works with blended learning advisers and other CHPE professionals on the design, development, and maintenance of digital teaching, learning, and assessment materials.


Administration Officer

Mr Rusche Petersen

+27 21 938 9190​

Mr. Rusche Petersen is a dynamic South African professional with a rich background in sports science, administration, and community service. Holding a BA in Sport Science and Psychology, and an Honours degree in Sport, Recreational and Exercise Science from UWC, he is currently an Administration Officer and SUN-Learn Assistant Technician at Stellenbosch University's Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. He plays a vital role in the digital education and learning technologies team, overseeing training and administration of learning management systems.

Videographer & Audio Visual Content Producer

Mrs Lizaan de Kock

+27 21 938 9389​

Mrs Lizaan de Kock​, completed a degree in Motion Picture Medium at the AFDA film school in Cape Town in 2020, majoring in directing and screen writing. This is where she practiced her artistry and learned about digital storytelling. After completing her studies, she began her career in the film industry by freelancing as a production assistant on both local and international productions, where she cultivated her skills in digital media software for a year. She left the industry to pursue content creation for both digital and visual mediums. She has completed certificates in both Adobe Creative cloud suites, Premiere Pro and Photoshop.​

Ms Fezeka Dyubeni

Clinical Communication Facilitator (Coordinator)

Ms Fezeka Dyubeni

+27 21 938 9457

Ms Fezeka Dyubeni, is an isiXhos​a clinical communication language facilitator. She graduated from Stellenbosch University (BA.Hons) in isiXhosa. She is currently completing her MA specialising in syllabus design for dietetics and health professionals in isiXhosa clinical communication at Stellenbosch University. Previously, she has been an isiXhosa second additional language teacher at primary and high schools as well as isiXhosa home language tutor at UWC. In 2007, Fezeka’s passion for isiXhosa and promotion of multilingualism prompted the  Minister of Education, Mr Cameron Dugmore, to approach her to be part of the team that had to design isiXhosa second additional language syllabi for primary and junior secondary schools of the WCED. This made her instrumental in promoting multilingualism and adding substance to government policy in Western Cape schools. Consequently, the WCED recommended her to assist in initiating the implementation of FMHS isiXhosa teaching in 2011-2012.

Ms Nontsikelelo Masiba

Clinical Communication Facilitator

Ms Nontsikelelo Masiba

+27 21 938 9457

Ms Nontsikelelo Masiba (Ntsiki), is a language facilitator in Clinical Skills Communication (isiXhosa). She has previously worked as an educator and has been teaching isiXhosa as second additional language (SAL) for about 10 years. She has graduated from Stellenbosch University (BEd Hons).Her experience includes e-Learning facilitation with the Western Cape Department of Education (WCED).

Ms Linda Mhlabeni

Clinical Communication Facilitator

Ms Linda Mhlabeni

+27 21 938 9672

Ms Linda Mhlabeni, is an isiXhosa clinical communication language facilitator. Since her arrival at Stellenbosch University in 2012, she has been an anchor of the complementary isiXhosa Clinical Communication (XCC) and Afrikaans Clinical Communication (ACC) e-Lessons courses. She developed and designed courses  under the auspices of Speech-Language and Hearing Therapy and the Language Centre. She also co-ordinates language learning on-line interventions at CHPE. Linda’s e-Learning-focused role has since extended to ad hoc teaching of XCC. She graduated from the University of Namibia (UNAM), Windhoek (BEd. Hons) with specialisation in Curriculum Studies. She also recently obtained her Master's degree in Education (MEd) from the University of Cape Town. Previously, she taught Afrikaans to adult learners and she was involved in training teachers in requisite areas identified by the Namibian Department of Education. She taught English first additional language (FAL) and second additional language (SAL) at two secondary schools in Windhoek, Namibia and at a TVET College in Cape Town. Linda has first language proficiency in 3 languages: isiXhosa, Afrikaans and English. Her areas of interest and research focus are language acquisition and learning as well as the implementation of technology during teaching and learning. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Simulation and Clinical Skills Unit (SCSU)​

Sr Lizanne van der Walt

Coordinator & Clinical Facilitator​

Sr Lizanne van der Walt

+27 21 938 9935

Sr Lizanne van der Walt, is a critical care qualified nurse and has joined the SCSU as coordinator and clinical facilitator in July 2019. Currently, she is the module chair for the early clinical rotation, and assists with multiple administrative and teaching duties within the unit. Her field of interest is within the teaching and learning arena, especially focusing on the integration of e-learning and skills training. She has recently completed her MPhil in Health Professions Education. 

Sr Bronwen Espen

Clinical Facilitator

Sr Bronwen Espen

+27 21 938 9935

Sr Bronwen Espen, a registered critical care nurse, joined the clinical skills centre in 2009. She is responsible for the mapping of skills into the renewed MBChB curriculum and late clinical rotation teaching in the MBChB programme. Her main interests are using simulation for teaching teamwork and communication skills and using debriefing for teaching in simulation. 

Ms Elsbeth Spies

Clinical Facilitator

Sr Elsbeth Spies

+27 21 938 9830

Sr Elsbeth Spies, graduated from US (B.Cur). She worked in the trauma division of the  private hospital sector as a registered nurse,​ after which she obtained her postgraduate Diploma in Emergency Medicine through UNISA. In 2012 she obtained her Nursing Education Diploma (US). She lectured undergraduate nursing students at a private nursing college and worked as a clinical facilitator in various private hospitals. She joined the team at the SCSU,  FMHS, Tygerberg as a clinical facilitator in October 2019.

Mrs Cornelia Smuts

Clinical Facilitator

Sr Cornelia Smuts

+27 21 938 9935

Sr Cornelia Smuts, graduated from the US (B.Cur)  in 1994. She is a trained critical care nurse and did her Diploma in Medical and Surgical Critical Care nursing at RAU. She worked in both government and private hospitals. Cornelia also nursed in The Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in the UK from 1997-1999. She has been working as a clinical facilitator in the SCSU from 2017. She is involved in the teaching of practical procedures to the ICM, ECR and dentistry students. She is also the secundi of the ECR medical students.​

Clinical Facilitator

Sr Rykie Van Toorn

+27 21 938 9855

Sr Rykie Van Toorn, (B.Cur) is a  registered intensive care nurse, worked in private hospitals locally as well as in NHS hospitals in the UK. She was involved in the general and intensive care orientation and training of agency nurses in the private sector. She completed her postgraduate nursing education qualification through Stellenbosch University in 2020. She joined the SCSU, CHPE in July 2021 and teaches undergraduate modules on the MBChB programme.

Clinical Facilitator

Sr Mariska Van Zyl
+27 21 938 9633

Sr Mariska van Zyl, worked as a registered nurse in the private hospital setting for more than 20 years. She obtained her postgraduate D​iploma in Nursing Education in 2014 after which she worked as a clinical facilitator in the general wards in a private hospital. She joined the SCSU team in July 2021 as a clinical facilitator where she teaches practical procedures to undergraduate students.

Clinical Facilitator

Dr Ben van Wyk​​

Dr Ben van Wyk graduated from Stellenbosch University (MBChB) in 2009. Due to a brain injury sustained in a motor vehicle accident in 2012, he left the clinical practice in pursuit of a career in medical education in 2014. He was employed as a PBL facilitator at UCT​’s medical faculty, whereafter he joined the team at SCSU, FHMS​​ at Tygerberg in 2015 as a clinical facilitator.

Ms Anna Skotz

Laboratory Assistant

Ms Anna Skotz

+27 21 938 9633

Ms Anna Skotz, has been employed at the university since 2009. Her duties include reception on the new SCSU extension, lending logistical support to lecturers as well as supporting students with items for practice.

Laboratory Assistant

Ms Nonnie Nonhlanhla Msuthu

+27 21 938 9633

Ms Nonhlanhla Msuthu, has been employed as a general laboratory assistant at SCSU since 2021. She is responsible for lending support to lecturers and students utilising the laboratory, as well as the management of recyclable items.

Ms Anna Skotz

Support Technician

Mr Jaco Fourie​​
+27 21 938 9633

Mr Jaco Fourie, has a passion for working with multimedia and technology. After graduating from Cape Audio Engineering with a diploma in multimedia production he furthered his career as a professional video editor and consultant in the restaurant industry. Jaco recently returned to the IT industry as a Tier 2 support technician.

Jennifer Cleland

Extraordinary Professor in the DHPE

Professor Jennifer Cleland

Jennifer Cleland is President's Chair in Medical Education and Vice Dean (Education), Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.   Prior to this position, she was the inaugural holder of the John Simpson Chair of Medical Education Research at the University of Aberdeen, UK and Director of the Scottish Medical Education Research Consortium (2015-2020).  She was the Chair of the Association for Medical Education (ASME) from 2013-2018 and Chair of the Association for Medical Education Europe (AMEE) Research Committee (2014-2018).

She holds Adjunct or Honorary Professor roles at numerous universities across three continents. She is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh, and the Academy of Medical Educators, and an Associate Fellow of the Faculty of Surgical Trainers, Royal College of Surgeons (Edin).  She is a member of AMEE's Executive Committee. She holds editorial positions with the journals Medical Education and Advances in Health Sciences Education.

Jennifer (Jen) is known internationally for her research in the areas of student selection and widening access to medicine, performance and assessment, career progression and choices in medicine. Her research is characterised by inter-disciplinarity and methodological flexibility. She has published over 200 academic papers in top ranking journals.  She is co-editor with Steve ​Durning, of Researching Medical Education (2015), used as a core text for MHPE globally, with the second edition out in November 2022.​​

Cecilia Jacobs

Senior Researcher

Associate Professor Cecilia Jacobs

Associate ​Professor Cecilia Jacobs, ​has worked in Higher Education for the past 30 years. She is currently an Associate Professor in Higher Education at the Centre for Health Professions Education at the University of Stellenbosch. Prior to that she was the director of the Centre for Teaching and Learning at the University of Stellenbosch. Her field of expertise is higher education studies, and she has worked predominantly in the area of the professionalisation of academics for their teaching roles. Her work has been of a transdisciplinary nature, and she has always conducted research at the intersection of her field and other disciplines such as engineering and, currently, health sciences. Her current research focuses on the question of knowledge and the importance of its centrality in debates on higher education teaching and learning.

Julia Blitz

Academic Associate

Professor Julia Blitz

Professor Julia Blitz,  (BSc; MB BCh; M Prax Med; FCFP; PGCHE; FRCGP[Hon]; PhD), is a family physician by clinical background and Professor in Health Professions Education​. She started exploring academic aspects of higher education whilst working in Family Medicine at the University of Pretoria (1997 – 2008) and went on to complete a PhD in Health Professions Education in the Centre for Health Professions Education in 2018. She teaches on the MPhil, is involved in the supervision of Masters students' research and is looking forward to supervising PhD students. Her interests include selection into undergraduate health professions programmes, faculty development (especially for clinical teachers) and assessment.​​​​

Mr Alwyn Louw

In Memoriam

Senior Lectu​​​rer​​
Dr Alwyn Louw

Tribute to Dr Alwyn Louw​