Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University phases out engineering National Diploma

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Dr Oswald Franks

The Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University is phasing out the National Diploma in engineering programs, to introduce new three-year Bachelor of Engineering Technology degrees.

This year is the last year that the University had an intake of National Diploma programs in Civil, Electrical, Industrial and Mechanical engineering, which will all be replaced with the BEngTech programs.

The new degree programmes were endorsed by the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA), approved by the Council for Higher Education (CHE) and registered by the South African Quality Authority (SAQA).

These outcomes based degrees are aligned to the new Higher Education Qualifications Sub-Framework (HEQSF) promulgated by the Minister of Higher Education in 2013.

NMMU Faculty of Engineering, the Built Environment and Information Technology (EBEIT) executive Dean, Dr Oswald Franks, said the new degree programmes would give students optimum opportunities for academic progression to doctorate level through the Honours and Masters (MEng) degrees.

“MTech and DTech degrees have already been phased out. The new degrees will replace the current National Diploma and with effect from January 2018 there will be no further first year registrations for the National Diploma.

“Rapidly developing science and technologies in the last decade requires a good understanding of Engineering Science to empower students to cope with fast developing technologies and innovation as well as to also ensure effective life-long learning abilities.

“The new BEngTech degrees have been designed specifically to address these needs and will include a significant capstone practical project to integrate learning. The degrees will be offered on a full time basis,” Dr Franks said.

The BEngTech degrees are broad-based engineering qualifications that will ensure portability across a wide range of industries and services on a regional, national and international basis.

These degrees will be under the Sydney International Accord for international recognition of accredited Engineering Technology programmes.

NMMU has offered ECSA accredited engineering programmes over many years and has well equipped laboratories as well as highly qualified and experienced academics and technical staff.