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Prof. Leonie G Higgs

Department Teacher Education
PO Box 392 Unisa
South Africa - 0003

Gender issues in higher education: the case of the academic profession in South Africa

Authors : Higgs,P., Wolhuter,C.C., Nshoe, I. & Higgs, L.G.

For the past half century, eauality has been one of the driving sources of educatiobal expansion and reform. One dimension of this equality is gender. South Africa is no exception to the world wide trend, especially in post apartheid South Africa. The force with which equality has been driven in South Africa education makes it a notewirthy case for the international scholarly community.

This paper focus on one aspect of equality in South African education, namely gender equality with regard to the academic profession. The results of the recently completed CAP (Changing academic profession) international survey of the academic profession, in which the authors as the South African research team participated, allow a study of gender equality with respect to the academic profession in South Africa. This paper uses CAP data to investigate gender equality with respect to the South African academic profession and also the academic profession's interests regarding teaching and research, and how influential members of the profession feel at the level of department, faculty and institution.


Leonie Higgs is an Associate Professor in the Department of Teacher Education at the University of South Africa. She earned a PhD from the University of Pretoria and also acted as director of the ABET institute from 1 June 2006 – 30 June 2009. Her interests are adult basic education, life-long learning, adult education, the academic profession and philosophy of education.