CET's first Mellon-funded master's student graduates

12 December 2011

This week UCT's Centre for Educational Technology (CET) will graduate the first sponsored master's students to complete a degree under its tutelage.

Paul Mungai will be one of the first Andrew W Mellon Foundation-sponsored, CET-supervised student to complete a master's degree at UCT. Mungai was awarded a Mellon Scholarship for the postgraduate course in Information Communication Technology in Education.

In his thesis, Mungai explored the types of knowledge that University of the Western Cape social work students demonstrated while developing their ePortfolios.

ePortfolios, or electronic portfolios, are digitised collections of documents, images, artefacts, and blogs that can be used to showcase development over time.

In this qualitative study, four social work students developed summative, working, reflective and assessment ePortfolios. Mungai found that subjective and descriptive knowledge were most pronounced in the ePortfolios of all four, although other types of knowledge also enjoyed varying degrees of prominence.

The Kenyan software developer, currently working at the University of the Witwatersrand, expressed gratitude to the Mellon Foundation for funding his studies at what he calls "the best institution on the African continent".

"This course has imparted useful knowledge in my area of work and I hope to impart the same to my work," he says.

Mungai's supervisor, Associate Professor Dick Ng'ambi, explains that students supervised by the CET enjoyed a useful head start.

"One of the advantages for studying a master's in a centre is that students are supervised by staff who are educational technology practitioners, educators and researchers. CET staff continue to research and publish widely, and some are rated by the National Research Foundation."

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