The event proved a valuable opportunity for each partner to share the various ways in which they are approaching their curriculum design process. NUL presented their experiences using the Tuning Africa methodology, and highlighted the on-going and iterative nature of curriculum design and review. Moi Univeristy offered an overview of their approach to embracing multidisciplinarity in their degree programme. PAUWES ran a session on the ways in which entrepreneurship skills and competencies can be integrated into a curriculum.
The workshop also aimed to develop a better understanding of the energy access sector to inform the process of developing responsive, needs-based postgraduate curricula. Thus in addition to the universities, also present were several organisations working in the sector who offered their insights and reflections on skills needs. Energy 4 Impact presented the findings from their recent research into the training needs in the mini-grid sector, Shortlist discussed the various competencies and job roles that energy access companies are looking to recruit, and The African Management Initiative discussed the relevance of soft skills in the workplace. In addition to these, Dr Jon Leary presented some of the technology innovations he is working on as part of the Modern Energy Cooking Services programme.
These insights were a useful basis to start to explore the process of translating sectoral needs into academic learning outcomes, and for the universities to start planning their own sector needs assessment processes. Under the guidance of education specialist Dr Mary Omingo, university teams began the exercise of translating examples of sectoral needs into explicit learning outcomes, incorporating both hard and soft skills, and planning the types of teaching and learning activities that would support these outcomes.
The workshop was highly valued with much positive feedback from participants. We’d like to thank Strathmore University for the venue and supporting with event logistics. We look forward to the next workshop, due to be held in March 2020.