- Title: UNISA 1873-2018: The Making of a Distance Learning University
- Author: Andrew Manson
- Publisher: UNISA Press
- Country of Origin: South Africa
- Publication Year: 2018
- ISBN: 9781776150434
- Bib. Info: Hardcover; 350pp
Unisa 1873-2018: The making of a distance learning university presents a critical appraisal of Unisa’s transformation as it navigates the unfolding saga of South Africa’s political development. The history of Unisa is fraught with a complex, oft-times ambiguous and contradictory, relationship with the state.
This official history of the University of South Africa provides a platform on which future narratives around Unisa can be constructed. As a distinctly colonial institution, Unisa was a site of friction between the colonial powers and nascent captive forces of Afrikaner nationalism and white supremacist ideology. The character of present day Unisa allows for the expression of alternative and dissenting opinions despite its proximity to a constitutionally crafted state in its pursuit of the ‘African university in service of humanity’. This is highlighted in the motifs of transformation, Africanisation and democratisation explored in the book.
Unisa 1873-2018 captures the university’s transitions from an examining body to one that has fully embraced open distance and e-learning, more attuned to student needs. It delineates Unisa’s shift to a more representative and African orientated institution serving the needs of the continent.