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School of Graduate Studies

The School of Graduate Studies (SGS) has been established in 1996 with the task to coordinate all aspects of graduate student programmes, from recommendation for approval by Senate to quality management as well as from admission through graduation. PhD enrolments commenced in the academic year 1995/96 and the first research student graduated in 1998/99; 2,009 Master, 22 MPhil and 38 PhD qualifications have been awarded so far. At the end of the decade, UB plans to become a research-intensive university and to grow its graduate student population triple fold from 1,000 in 2006/7. With a 35% growth over the past three years, 1,350 graduate students have been enrolled in 42 Master and 28 MPhil/PhD Programmes. During the same period, 30 graduate programmes were newly added and MPhil/PhD enrolments grew by 50% from 83 to 123.

So far, taught graduate programmes were offered only in full/part-time mode, limiting the intake to those students who are able to be residential in Gaborone during their semesters of study. Considering that Botswana has a population of 2 million dispersed over a 600,000 km2 territory (combined area of Germany and UK), lifelong learning for professionals living outside the capital’s catchment area was severely restricted. Starting this academic year, SGS launched a new breed of programmes based on the five MAGIC principles (modular, accredited, globally appealing, interdisciplinary, compliant). The first two programmes in this category are the MBA and the MDP; for the latter SGS received significant competitive funding from the MacArthur Foundation as one of twenty selected universities worldwide. Being chosen to receive this grant and to offer the Master's in Development Practice (MDP) signifies the increasing global importance of sustainable development and acknowledges the multi-disciplinary competencies UB’s Graduate Programme Portfolio has developed in this area.

The new modular programmes will strengthen international student and staff exchanges, but, foremost, enable professionals residential outside Gaborone to take up graduate studies and provide opportunities for national organisations wishing to strengthen staff recruitment, development, and retention by supporting lifelong learning of their employees. A combination of graduate qualifications (PG Certificate, PG Diploma, Master) in Science, Research, and Educational Management has also been recently approved and will be offered in due course as well as an Executive MBA.

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