University of Dodoma

TO HELP to cope with the insatiable demand for higher education in a country where primary and secondary schooling has been significantly improved, a large new university is planned for Tanzania. In line with the country’s National Development Vision 2025, the University of Dodoma, when fully operational, will be able to enrol 40 000 students in a variety of academic disciplines. This is more than double the present size of the University of Dar es Salaam. However, the university at Dodoma is currently a work in progress.

Building is ongoing on a giant campus of approximately 6 000 hectares near Dodoma, a regional centre about 400 km due west of Dar es Salaam. Teaching began in 2007 when just over 1 000 students enrolled for programmes offered in the schools of Humanities, and Social Sciences, as well as the colleges of Education, and Informatics and Virtual Education. Schools of Life Sciences, and Health and Allied Sciences were launched in 2008.

In June 2007, the government approved 97 academic staff positions, which were rapidly filled. Females constitute just over 30 percent of the appointments made. The majority of the lecturers are assistant lecturers and tutorial assistants. The latter positions are held by people with undergraduate qualifications only, but they are expected to embark upon a masters programme as soon as possible. Once a Masters has been achieved, they are automatically appointed as assistant lecturers and are officially allowed to teach, while at the same time they are also expected to study further at doctoral level to enhance their qualifications and advance their careers.

In this way, Odoma’s teaching staff will grow along with the university’s physical infrastructure. It also means that at the moment more than 70% of academic staff is underqualified, and the university is trying to find assistance to support its staff development agenda.

Facts and Figures at a Glance1

Of about 1,100 students enrolled at UDOM in 2007/2008, more than half are from the School of Social Sciences (University of Dodoma, 2008b). Students have enrolled during 2007/2008 in programmes in the School of Humanities, School of Social Sciences, College of Education, and College of Informatics and Virtual Education.

In June 2007, the Government approved a total of 97 positions for academic staff. Although the total number of academic staff seems to be optimal in relation to the total student enrolment for the academic year 2007/08, the percentage distribution across the academic ranks and disciplines is skewed. Female staff members constitute about 31 percent of the total. Of these staff, 18 are in the School of Humanities (University of Dodoma, 2008c) and 37 in the School of Social Sciences (University of Dodoma, 2008b).

[1] All data presented in this section is headcount data.