Harmonisation of Public Universities Selection

The National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) was established by Act of Parliament No. 15 of 2010, with the primary purpose of promoting and coordinating education provided by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs).

One of the critical mandates of NCHE is to ensure a streamlined and consistent student selection process into public higher education institutions. This responsibility holds particular importance as it directly impacts the future of aspiring students and the overall education system in Malawi.

In Malawi, there are six public universities: Kamuzu University of Health Sciences (KUHeS), Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR), Malawi University of Business and Applied Sciences (MUBAS), Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST), Mzuzu University (MZUNI), and University of Malawi (UNIMA).

Since 2014, NCHE has actively undertaken the harmonisation of student selection into these public universities. Through its efforts, the selection process has become more efficient and transparent, bringing a sense of order and fairness to the process.

Previously, each university conducted its own selection process, which resulted in several issues. For instance, some students were selected into multiple public universities, depriving other deserving students of a fair chance for selection. Moreover, applicants were burdened with the need to pay for separate applications to each university, leading to significant financial strain.

However, with NCHE coordinating the application process, significant improvements have been made. Now, candidates only need to submit a single application and pay a consolidated fee that covers all six public universities. This streamlined approach not only eases the financial burden on applicants but also ensures a fairer selection process for all students. By centralizing the application process, NCHE has brought much-needed efficiency and transparency to university admissions.

Important to note is the fact that NCHE does not directly select students for public universities. The selection process is carried out by the respective universities through their Selection Committees, guided by their institutional Acts.

NCHE coordinates the Public Universities Selection (PUS) process by bringing together the Technical Working Group (TWG), which comprises representatives from each of the public universities. The TWG develops a calendar of events that outlines the timeline for various stages of the selection process, including data submission, application call, selection, and result release. NCHE ensures the coordination of these processes by organizing meetings and overseeing the implementation of any changes in government selection policy.

In conclusion, NCHE's role in the selection of students into public universities is instrumental in shaping the future of education in Malawi, fostering equal opportunities for all students, and contributing to the nation's progress and prosperity.

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