Trends & Threats in Online Learning: An International Perspective

Mandla Stanley Makhanya (University of South Africa).jpg

During the week of 9 February 2015, Professor Mandla Makhanya delivered a series of special briefings to faculty and senior administrators in Ontario, Canada, which focused on the major trends and threats in online learning.

Professor Makhanya is the Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of South Africa. He is a member of the Executive Committee of the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE). Professor Makhanya is also a Contact North I Contact Nord Research Associate.

In the briefings, Professor Makhanya focused on:

  • Major trends in online learning

  • Major threats to online learning

  • Africa's successes and milestones in open and distance learning

  • What other jurisdictions, including Canada, can learn from Africa

  • Implications for students, faculty, administrators, policy makers

The briefings and meetings were held with:

  • Honourable Reza Moridi, Ontario' s Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities

  • Carleton University

  • University of Ottawa

  • Ryerson University's Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education

  • Ryerson University's Digital Media Zone

  • York University

  • Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION)

  • Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada

  • World University Service

  • Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario

This set of special briefings is part of Contact North | Contact Nord's Emerging Technologies Series, which includes training and professional development opportunities for faculty and instructors at Ontario's public colleges, universities and other education and training providers by world experts in online and distance education. Maxim Jean-Louis, ICDE Executive Committee member, is the CEO of Contact North | Contact Nord.

A copy of Professor Makhanya's presentation and speaking notes from his visit to Carleton University is available from the Ontario Online Learning Portal for Faculty & Instructors.

This article originally appeared in the Contact North newsletter. To receive more information on interesting and relevant topics, sign up for the Contact North newsletter at