MUT lecturer shares challenges of emergency remote teaching at HELTASA webinar

Arthi Ramrung

Lecturer in the Teaching and Learning Development Centre, Arthi Ramrung, participated in the Higher Education Learning and Teaching Association of Southern Africa (HELTASA) webinar to discuss the challenges that staff and students face during the COVID-19 induced Lockdown.

“During the webinar we were able to highlight concerns that have been highlighted by both staff and students. It also helped showcase not only our vulnerabilities but also our strengths. The conversations and chats shared during this webinar helped us as the academic community to learn from each other,” said Arthi.

The webinar, held on 15 May 2020, was a joint initiative by three Collaborative Learning Communities (CLC) that focus on student success at HELTASA. Arthi convenes the national CLC group for First Year Experience (FYE) that is part of HELTASA, along with the Dr Danny Fontaine-Rainen from the University of Cape Town.

The webinar was preceded by a joint reflective article published on the HELTASA website and co-authored by Arthi and other academics from Cape Peninsula University of Technology, UCT, University of Free State, University of Johannesburg, University of the Western Cape and Varsity College. The article, titled: Care and Connection: Understanding the lived experiences during COVID-19, “was meant to provoke scholarly conversation which we then lead in a webinar held on the 15 May 2020”, said Arthi.

The webinar is part of a series of webinars to come, where participants can reflect on issues and engage with each other’s ideas.

“It is an honour to fly the MUT flag and be a part of such a dynamic team at HELTASA,” said Arthi. “One of the aims in holding these webinars is to create a space that allows university staff across South Africa to share their experience, ideas, and knowledge.”