Centre for Teaching and Learning
Welcome to Stellenbosch University

Curriculum context


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The first step in planning the curriculum is to look at the context within which T-L-A will take place. It can also be called the situational or needs analysis.

It is important to take note and be aware of the context on macro-, meso- and micro level. The macro level context includes the external stakeholders for example the industry, employers, professional bodies, higher education, etcetera. The meso level context includes the institutional vision and goals, the rationale for the programme, departmental and disciplinary aspects, available infrastructure, time table, wi-fi, etcetera and the micro level context includes you as a lecturer with your own strengths and weaknesses, and your students with their needs and backgrounds. All these aspects should be taken into account when planning, designing and developing your curriculum. 


Some specific aspects that should be taken into account are the following:

SU has a specific approach towards T-L-A which is described in the Strategy for Teaching and Learning 2014-2018 (available below).

When thinking about curriculum design the aspect of notional hours as linked to the credits of a module also becomes important.

The learning spaces or lecture halls available for facilitation of student learning also influence the design of these opportunities.

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 The podcast below gives a short introduction to the aspect of curriculum context. 



SU Approach

Learning centred

The Stellenbosch University Learning and Teaching policy (Learning and Teaching policy, 2007) states that:  "In the Strategic Framework (April 2000), the University's vision for the field of teaching is formulated as follows:  A university characterised by quality teaching, by the constant renewal of teaching and learning programmes, and by the creation of effective opportunities for learning / study.  One of the building blocks for the realisation of the University's vision in the field of teaching and learning is the commitment of Stellenbosch University to actively move towards the creation of a student-centred learning and teaching environment." 

The concept of student-centred learning and teaching, however, has may meanings and interpretations. We would therefore suggest that we use the term learning-centred learning and teaching, where the focus is on the facilitation of learning through the creation of learning opportunities.


The approach of SU in terms of teaching and learning is described in the Strategy for teaching and learning.   

The podcast below gives a short overview of the SU approach: 



E-supported (blended)

The Centre for Learning Technologies strives to inspire the meaningful and innovative use of technology for learning at Stellenbosch University.

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 Further reading:

Article.jpg  Learner centered teaching.pdf



SU Policy 

An important part of T&L @ SU is to enable staff and students to promote academic integrity and eliminate plagiarism. The University therefore has to ensure that the necessary mechanisms are in place in this regard to deal with such cases in a consistent and fair manner.

It is thus essential that the University has a policy in place to intercept these aspects and create a framework within which it is possible to function.

Policies.jpg  Plagiarism Policy_IF.docx  Plagiarism-Procedure_SenateExec14Nov2016.docx


Turnitin is a tool that can be used to create learning opportunities about academic integrity and give feedback in this regard.

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Notional hours

Credits are a measure of the notional hours or learning time that it would take the average student to meet the prescribed outcomes. The South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) uses a credit system based on the idea that one credit equals ten notional (assumed) hours of learning. 8 credits would thus equal 80 hours, etcetera.

'Notional hours' thus refers to student hours – in and out of the class- and includes the following:
• contact time (face-to-face);
• time spent in other structured learning opportunities (eg online learning opportunities);
• individual learning and preparation (self-study, time for completing assignments and research, etc.);
• time spent in assessment processes for example tests and exams and time spent on preparation for these assessments.


Lecture halls

Stellenbosch University has almost 250 lecture halls of various sizes and equipped with a variety of equipment.

About 133 of these halls can be booked if lecturers plan specific teaching and learning activities.  For venue bookings contact the Academic Administration Department:  click here.

The chart below gives a summary of these venues according to number of seats, available equipment (Wi-fi, Webcam, Document camera, Movable furniture) and available combinations.

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