Rhodes>NALSU>Worker Education>Short course on Policy, Theory and Research for Labour Movements

Short course on Policy, Theory and Research for Labour Movements

Short course on Policy, Theory and Research for Labour Movements

The NALSU team launched an accredited short course for unions and allied working-class civil society organisations from 2017, with the first cycle beginning in 2019 in partnership with the Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Education and Training Authority (merSETA). The programme is ongoing.

The short course programme has four main modules, and follows the same general principles adopted for the Vuyisile Mini workers Schools: 

* Capacity building.
* Progressive and pro-labour in orientation.
* Non-sectarian and non-aligned.
* University-based (and not in competition with other components of worker education in unions, LSOs and workplaces).
* Mixture of content, debate/ critical reasoning, and hard skills in writing, analysis and basic research.
* Academically rigorous.
* Structured partnerships with working-class movements.
* A dedicated programme customised by structured and substantive input by union partners (not a rebranding of existing courses developed for other constituencies).

The four main modules are as follows: 

* Political economy/ economic and social policy.
* State institutions and labour law.
* History and debates in the workers' and socialist movement.
* Building organisation.

The short course programme and its modules are delivered by NALSU in partnership with the Department of Sociology and Industrial Sociology, at Rhodes University, also drawing on expertise from Department of Economics and Economic History, and outside specialists.

It includes structured academic support to participants, developing academic reading, writing, assessment and analytical skills through systematic, detailed feedback and engagement.

Structure and delivery:

Each module involves 5-7 intense days.  The four modules are to be delivered by block release in Makhanda, and involve engaged, interactive small-class environments. Course evaluation per module will consist of one test, one take-home assignment, and one exam, also onsite, - with intensive feedback at all stages.
The modules are matched to NQF 6 level, and delivered and evaluated as rigorously as first year university courses. Completion of all four modules involves working for the same hours and attaining the same core competencies as two first year university courses at Rhodes. 

Successful demonstration of core competencies - content-based, critical reasoning and hard skills - earns certificates of competence at NQF 6 level, one per module.

Intended learners:

The short course is aimed, in the first instance, at union office bearers (elected within the union/s, including shop stewards) and officials (appointed within the union/s as employees). There are 25-30 learners enrolled for each module, with a Matric or Matric-equivalent level of education, including via Recognition of Prior Learning. It is open to all unions in the merSETA sectors. 


For additional information or follow-up discussions, please contact either one of the following two people: 

Coordinator: Professor Lucien van der Walt: l.vanderwalt@ru.ac.za

Project Manager: Mr Valance Wessels: v.wessels@ru.ac.za

Last Modified: Thu, 09 May 2024 08:16:42 SAST