Office of the deputy vice-chancellor for teaching and learning

Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning

Whatever your background, and wherever you are, the NWU offers you an education opportunity. We are committed to student success: feel welcome and be in touch.

Teaching and Learning are the core business of higher education in South Africa. The quality of education, whether in continuing education, post- or undergraduate programmes, depends on three factors: academic knowledge, skills and the andragogic knowledge utilised and developed by academics to ensure that teaching and learning are collaborative, lead to critical thinking, are innovative and stimulating. Student as well as staff development is complementary in terms of our commitment to a quality education experience.

The NWU, South Africa's second largest university, with its long investment in open distance learning, has adopted social justice as the lens through which all education and related provision is considered, synthesised and organised. Social justice explains our commitment to self-direction in student learning, a commitment to 21st-century skills, as well as high-quality student support, especially in online or distance learning modes. Social justice explains our commitment to maximise opportunities for students to use their languages of preference as well as to master English as a common language of communication. Social justice also explains our sense of the curriculum as being inclusive of the community (service as well as workplace experience).


Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning
Prof Robert Balfour

(018) 285 2106
Prof RJ Balfour CV 
Media publications
Key documents

Personal assistant to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning
Edwina Fransman
(018) 285 2105


Deputy Vice-Chancellor

The division of the deputy vice-chancellor (DVC) includes the Centre for Teaching and Learning, which is responsible for staff academic development, student support and development, e-learning and curriculum development.
The Unit for Continuing Education (UCE) provides business development opportunities as well as logistical and quality-assurance support for the offering of all short learning programmes by faculties.
Library and Information Services (LIS) manages and provides all library-related activities (including student and staff development in terms of information literacy and search skills), and maintains the extensive network of university libraries on the three main campuses, as well as the various faculty-based libraries.
The Careers Centre provides a number of careers days for students and employers to network and develop opportunities for future employment placement or prospects. The Careers Centre also engages with employers in terms of surveying employer satisfaction with graduates, as well the graduate destination survey.

The Language Directorate of the NWU is a support services division that renders a variety of language services to the University: language planning (policy and implementation), translation, interpreting, language editing, language advice and a language ombudsperson function. Additionally, the Directorate also carries out research where this may be relevant to any of its language activities.

The Qualification and Academic Programme Planning Unit assists Faculties primarily with the processes concerning the internal approvals and recommendation consultative structures (such as the Senate Committee for Academic Standards), and external approval and accreditation processes relating to the CHE, SAQA, HEQC and DHET and other statutory bodies to ensure that the University's PQM remains updated, aligned to the University Strategy and responsive to changes in the regulatory and market environments.
The Academic Grants Manager is also located within the DVC's division and oversees and reports on the earmarked grant activities (for teaching and learning as well as research, in collaboration with the DVC’s Research and Innovation Office) for which reporting to government and other agencies is required. Finally, the DVC’s office supports the Registrars Committee for Agreements with the NWU,  which ratifies all agreements with the NWU that have a teaching and learning focus (whether for post-, undergraduate, or continuing education programmes) for signature. Finally, the Executive Adviser to the DVC provides specialist support for dedicated initiatives and projects relating to the University's programmes and strategic prerogatives in the DVC’s office.

The DVC's Leadership Team

  • Prof Jan van Romburgh (Acting) - UCE
  • Mr Thoriso Maseng - CC
  • Dr Mathew Moyo - LIS
  • Prof Willie van Vollenhoven - CTL
  • Ms Sharon Paulse - Q&APP
  • Prof Robert Balfour DVC


Support Specialists

Dr Franciska Bothma
Executive Adviser to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning
(018) 285 2073


Ms Edwina Fransman
Personal assistant to the DVC: Teaching and Learning
(018) 285 2105

Centre for Teaching and Learning

The Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL) is responsible for staff academic development, student support, e-learning and curriculum development.



Prof Willie van Vollenhoven
Chief Director: Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL)
(018) 299 4868

Personal assistant to the Chief Director: Centre for Teaching and Learning
Luzelle van Rensburg
(018) 299 4871



Dr Esmarie Strydom
Director: Specialised TL projects & CHEDR
(016) 9103 064



Prof Emmanuel Mgqwashu
Director: Faculty Teaching and Learning Support
(018) 389 2096




Dr Gerhard Du Plessis
Director: TL Centralised Functions
(018) 299 2722

Unit for Continuing Education

The Unit for Continuing Education (UCE), provides for business development opportunities as well as logistical and quality assurance support for the offering of all Short Learning Programmes by Faculties.


Prof Jan van Romburgh
Acting Director UCE and NWU Business School
(018) 299 1433


Personal Assistant 
Marni Young
(018) 299 4899


Library and Information Services

Dr Mathew Moyo
Chief Director: Library and Information Services 
(018) 389 2017/2118

Personal assistant to the Chief Director: Library and Information Service
Maggie Melk-Sindwa
(018) 299 2784


Mrs Hendra Pretorius
Director: Client Services 
(016) 910 3173



Mrs Neli Kaunda
Director: Shared Services 
(018) 299 2781



Ms Manare Tshenye
Senior Manager: LIS Campus Operations
(018) 389 2190



Mrs Louise Vos
Senior Manager: Outreach, Projects and Quality
(018) 299 2788

Careers Centre


Mr Thoriso Maseng
Manager: Careers Centre
(018) 299 2058


Language Directorate


Mr Johan Blaauw
Director: Language Directorate
(018) 299 4700
Visit our website for more information:

The Qualification and Academic Programme Planning Unit


Ms Sharon Paulse
Director: Q&APP Unit
(018) 299 2618
Visit our website for more information:

Academic Grants Administration


Prof Susan Visser
Academic Grants Manager
(018) 285 2334


Gender awareness and LGBTIQ+ matters

Gender Awareness is a critical component of the Diversity focus of the NWU. There are a number of institution-wide projects and initiatives. Within the DVCs Office, there is a Steering Committee for Awareness of Gender. This is representative of student LGBTIQ leadership as well as representatives from the Faculties of the NWU. This committee, comprised of volunteer members of staff, exists to promote awareness of gender and to support through the DVCs Office University wide initiatives like Gender Awareness Week annually in August. There is also a network of LGBTIQ staff and allies within and outside the University known as the Gender Benefit Network. The GBN exists to raising funding to support student and staff initiatives to raise awareness of issues affecting LGBTIQ+ groups and it maintains the GBN Fund Rules.