Several departments at the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) have written to the management expressing dismay over the changes that are being made to degree programmes offered by the institution.
The changes are being done in line with the government’s Education 5.0 thrust which expects state universities to embrace “(1) teach, (2) research and (3) community serve but (4) innovate and (5) industrialise Zimbabwe” mantra in their programmes.
In a petition to the UZ management, the Department of Sociology wrote:
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We are dismayed by the realisation that changes proposed by discipline experts in the Department of Sociology have been largely ignored and in their place are impositions of new non-social science degrees from the executive who have no certified expertise in our disciplines.
We were open to ideas, open to change and open to constructive criticism. In the end, we submitted our proposed degree programmes, together with the scientific justifications for the changes we did and the programmes we retained.
The petition reveals that a number of undergraduate degrees programmes have been added to the department by “non-experts”.
The new disciplines include BSc Hons Smart Technology Applications and Community Development, BSc Hons Innovation and Community Development, BSc Urbanisation and Social Amenities Development, BSc Society and Heritage Studies, BSc Anthropology and Heritage Studies.
Higher and Tertiary Education Science and Technology Development Minister, Amon Murwira said the review process is not yet complete and any misgivings should be dealt with internally and not discussed in the press.
Murwira, however, vowed to go ahead with the changes and chided those are resisting change as conservatives who have been at UZ “for a long time”.