Institutionalizing Technologies in South African Universities towards the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Tankiso Moloi, Mary Kehinde Salawu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigated the essentials for institutionalizing technologies for teaching and learning across the three categories of universities in South Africa in the 4IR era. The study adopted cross-sectional survey design. Online interview was conducted on Microsoft Teams and Zoom with the Seventy (70) Executive Deans/Deans in Twenty-two (22) out of twenty-six (26) South African Universities. Content analysis and descriptive statistics were employed for analyzing data. Findings revealed that the universities in the Republic deployed fifty-seven different technologies to facilitate their teaching and learning. Also, the sampled universities had supplemented teaching platforms with new technologies such as WhatsApp, Zoom, and MS Teams. The study established that most universities/faculties had provided training on an ongoing basis. Having overcome the initial resistance, it was found that the teaching staff is competent in using existing technologies for teaching. Results also revealed notable improvements in the standard and quality of teaching and learning with the aid of emerging technologies as evidenced by positive feedbacks from lecturers and students, and continuity with classes, even underlockdown conditions. This diagnostic study has contributed to current research by identifying and assessing the response of South African universities to teaching and learning in 4IR era. The sustainability of academic calendar under lockdown is a proof that universities are prepared to implement the convergence between human and machines in this age. It was concluded that there is a need to have a national policy in place that deals with funding (special grant) to plug the gap in the digital divide. The major limitation of the study is that it focused on the Deans/Executive Deans and other key personnel in charge of implementing the 4IR in universities, taking no input from the students.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)204-227
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Fourth industrial revolution
  • Higher education
  • South africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • General Engineering


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