Open Learning Conference 2018

From 5 to 7 September, a joint conference and separate AGMs for the Distance Education Association of Southern Africa (DEASA) and the National Association of Distance Education and Open Learning in South Africa (Nadeosa) was hosted at the Muckleneuk campus of the University of South Africa (Unisa) with support from the University of Pretoria (UP). The conference explored the concept of open learning and how it might be applied in schooling, technical and vocational education and training and higher education contexts, as well as for teacher and adult education and in order to open access for learners with various barriers to learning. The joint conference was complemented by a Unisa Teaching and Learning Festival as well as a meeting of the African Council for Distance Education (ACDE). At various times during the event some 170 delegates from 17 countries shared their experience and learning. Conference delegates were addressed by some of the leaders in the field: Asha Kanwar, Michael Moore, Shafika Issacs, Andreas Mangiatordi and Terry Anderson. The conference opened with two workshops titled Revisiting student administration in distance education in a digital era and quality assurance in ODeL.

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  • Conferences and Workshops

    Nadeosa hosts an annual distance education conference. We also host smaller workshops providing our members an opportunity to engage on matters of mutual interest or concern. In other cases our workshops aim to introduce new concepts or technologies related to distance education.

  • Networks

    Over the years NADEOSA has built-up strong networks of people involved in distance education in South Africa, the rest of Africa and elsewhere in the world.Our members have engaged extensively with regional associations such as Deasa and international distance education organisations such as the Commonwealth of Learning, International Council for Distance Education, European Distance Education Network, Open and Distance Learning Association of Australia. The network has been further strengthened through ongoing interaction with educational institutions providing both distance education and other flexible learning methods.

  • Information Services

    NADEOSA provides members with a regular information service.The following services are available to members:

    • Daily education current awareness service: This news article service has a focus on distance education in Africa and elsewhere in the world, South African education policy and related information, use of technology in education and education technology applications.
    • Document service: This service covers most of the subjects above, but the resources are more substantial than press articles.
    • Conference listing: A conference listing by date of distance education conferences around the world and also more general educational conferences taking place in South Africa.
    • Journal abstract service: Abstracts from educational journals relevant to the NADEOSA community.


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Aims of the Association

The overarching aim of this Association is to provide a forum for South African organisations and individuals who are committed to increasing access to an affordable, cost-effective and quality learning environment in which learners are empowered to become self sufficient members of society.


  • To facilitate collaboration among distance education and open learning organisations in South Africa.
  • To advocate awareness, understanding, and application of distance education and open learning amongst policy makers, practitioners, and learners.
  • To promote research and evaluation of distance education and open learning in South Africa.
  • To exert influence with regard to adequate policy (including financial support) for distance education.
  • To advance the professional interests of distance education practitioners.
  • To promote and enhance quality assurance in distance education.

NADEOSA does not register or accredit distance education programmes.