ACTS relaunch activities
HAQAA2, in addition to further advancing a common language for Quality Assurance (QA) across the continent, also responded to the fact that one important tool of the PAQAF – The African Credit Transfer System (ACTS) – is pending political endorsement and implementation. This instrument will ultimately enable higher education systems to be more readable, supplementing efforts for common QA standards and the development of the African Continental Qualifications Framework (ACQF). It can also be a powerful tool to help systems and HEI re-think how learning is structured, orienting it towards a learning outcomes-based approach and a concept of student workload that encompasses contact hours and non-classroom hours.
A political definition of an African Credit Transfer System (ACTS) was elaborated in 2018 by a group of national and regional bodies lead by the EC and AUC in the framework of the Tuning Africa project. The process followed three stages: Firstly, information about the state of the art of credits in 35 African countries was collected. Secondly, scientific research was conducted, based on a large survey focused on the estimation of African Student Workload, from the perspective of academics and students. Finally, a general report was elaborated, with strong recommendations for how to define the ACTS.
ACTS relaunch under HAQAA2
In the framework of HAQAA2, a strategy for the relaunch of the ACTS was proposed, with two objectives:
- promote regional dialogue on the importance of ACTS for international mobility, academic recognition and re-conceptualising teaching and learning, with clear identification of the main challenges for its implementation and also proposals for its advancement
- define the main steps to be followed at national, regional and continental level for validating ACTS, eventually adopting it and further promoting its application.
To achieve these objectives, an African Credit Transfer System Task Force (ACTS-TF) was set-up and led by OBREAL Global, in partnership with the AAU and DAAD.
ACTS-TF was composed by 6 members:
- Olusola Oyewole (Secretary General of the AAU)
- Damtew Teferra (Director of Research and Programmes of AAU)
- Christoph Hansert (Head of Department of DAAD)
- Hortense Atta Diallo (Vice Rector of Nangui Abrogoua University – Ivory Coast)
- Ana Maria Nhampule (Vice Rector of Universidade Joaquim Chissano – Mozambique)
- Pablo Beneitone (Higher Education Expert from OBREAL Global)
Activities were delivered in different ways (virtual, hybrid and physical), taking advantage of other HAQAA activities, such as the Advisory Board meetings, final conference and events of major stakeholder organisations like EAQAN and AfriQAN. Targeted physical workshops included:
- Abidjan, 8 – 9 June 2022 (held in English and French), back-to-back with the HAQAA2 Advisory Board
- Addis Ababa, 5 October 2022 (held in English), back-to-back with the PAQAA consultation workshop
- Maputo, 27 October 2022 (held in Portuguese) – back-to-back with
- Accra, 6 December 2022 (held in English and French) – back-to-back with the HAQAA2 Final Conference
Based on these discussions and consultations, a report and road map was developed, to inform the next steps in taking forward, implementing and validating the ACTS.