THE ROLE OF CULTURE IN GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE AND ITS IMPACTS ON THE LIVES AND WELLBEING OF WOMEN: IMPLICATIONS FOR SOCIAL WORK

Volume 78, Dec 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.12.3
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Abstract: Despite the advancements in the law and the new laws that have been passed in South Africa and elsewhere, femicide and gender-based violence against women continue to be commonplace. This paper has examined and analysed a range of literary sources, including books, scholarly journals, and newspaper articles. It has been discovered that gender-based violence is pervasive and primarily impacts women. It has been discovered that patriarchy and culture are among the main causes of violence, and that the most common forms are physical, economic, verbal, and psychological abuse. Additionally, it was established that social workers ought to help victims of violence.

Author(s): Kasa Luvo, Yolanda U. Saunders


ARE SOME INFLAMMATORY MARKERS BETTER THAN OTHERS AT DETERMÄ°NING GASTRÄ°C CANCER PROGNOSIS?

Volume 78, Nov 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.11.15
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Abstract: Purpose: In patients with stomach cancer, the inflammatory response of the host, and tumor markers, play essential roles in determining the prognosis. This study aimed to predict prognosis in previously untreated gastric cancer patients using inflammatory markers. Materials and Methods: This retrospective study evaluated 100 patients with stomach cancer, treated between 2015 and 2018. Pre-and postoperative blood samples were analyzed for the neutrophil/lymphocyte ratio (NLR), the platelet/lymphocyte ratio (PLR), the systemic inflammatory index (SII), and other immune markers. Results: The survival rate was significantly higher in patients with an SII level < 1190.4 compared to patients with an SII level > 1190.4 (p < 0.05). The disease-free survival was 47.7 months in the group with a low SII (84.4%) and 37 months in the group with a high SII (80%). In the ROC analysis, the AUC for NLR, PLR, and SII was 0.611, 0.65, and 0.64, respectively (p-values: 0.058, 0.010, and 0.011). The preoperative values were not significant; however, the postoperative values were significant for prognosis. Conclusion: During the pre-and postoperative periods, analysis of the inflammatory markers (NLR, PLR, and SII) guides the treatment and follow-up as much as the histopathological features of the tumor. High NLR and SII levels shortened overall survival during the 4-year follow-up.

Author(s): Nilufer Bulut, Berrak Sahtiyanci


COVID 19 AS CATALYST TO ONLINE TEACHING AND LEARNING: REFLECTIONS AND EXPERIENCES FROM SELECTED PRIVATE HIGHER INSTITUTION IN THE EASTERN CAPE

Volume 78, Nov 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.11.7
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Abstract: After the outbreak of coronavirus, most higher institutions were forced to shut-down the traditional method of teaching and learning which is face-to-face to online learning. This change had to be implemented within a very short of time to save the academic calendar. The pandemic was a clear manifestation that higher institutions need to be flexible in systems of teaching and learning beyond the catastrophe. This research aims at examining the preparedness of higher Institutions to implement online teaching and learning during the pandemic. Qualitative method approach was adopted, and unstructured interviews was used, and data was collected from 20 participants, through purposive sample strategy, and the data was analysed using thematic approach. Findings revealed that some higher institutions were minimally prepared to implement online learning, and even though there are advantages with the new normal, many looming challenges need to be assessed and resolved. There are hierarchy problems related to online learning which manifest in different forms. There are technical challenges, adaptability in teaching style, and lack of technical skills in teachers. The findings revealed that there was deficient communication and lack of adequate interaction between students and their lecturers due to online learning issues such as connectivity. In this regard, the study recommends that universities create plans to address these challenges because, they persist, students’ motivation to learn will diminish and the entire culture of teaching and learning will deteriorate in the higher education fraternity.

Author(s): Maxhobandile Ndamase, Yusuf Lukman and Beauty Makiwane


ITEM BANK DEVELOPMENT AND VALIDATION FOR ABILITY ESTIMATION: COMPUTER ADAPTIVE TESTING APPLICATION FOR POSTGRADUATE CERTIFICATION/DIPLOMA IN EDUCATION (MATHEMATICS)

Volume 78, Oct 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.10.8
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Abstract: The foundation of a good psychological measurement, such as ability estimation, is to develop an optimal item bank for educational assessments. This research aimed to develop an optimal item bank for the further teacher training programme in Mathematics while detailing all the procedures, including planning, content analysis, and test blueprint going by Bloom's taxonomy of educational objectives. The pre-experimental research design using the one-shot case study type was adopted for the study and complemented by the feature data generation FDG technique. The technique was deployed through a post-hoc simulation using item parameter estimates with real data collected from 35 participants with 68 multiple-choice items, from which 200 items with 535 participants were generated. The developed item bank was validated for ability estimation using the item response theory model with three logistical parameters: item difficulty level, item discriminating power, and pseudo-guessing. The responses to the test resulted in the collection and analysis of dichotomous scored tests for answering the generated research questions. The item parameters and ability estimation were analyzed using the Xcalibre 4.2 programme. Ninety per cent of the items met the criteria of a good item, including having a good difficulty level and functioning properly between the high and low ability participants with the discrimination and guessing parameters. A relatively low Conditional Standard Error of Measurement was recorded as the indices for ascertaining the precision of ability estimation using the developed test based on which recommendations were made. The carefully outlined procedures also ensure replicability within other programmes.

Author(s): Jumoke I. Oladele, Mdutshekelwa Ndlovu, Erica D. Spangenberg, Virendra Ramdhany


LEARNERS’ VIEWS ON HOW THE LANGUAGE OF LEARNING AND TEACHING AFFECTS THEIR UNDERSTANDING OF MATHEMATICAL LITERACY

Volume 78, Dec 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.12.1
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Abstract: The purpose of the study was to investigate learners’ perceptions of how the language of learning and teaching affects their understanding of concepts of Mathematical Literacy in different topics. A close-ended questionnaire was administered to a randomly selected sample of 28 Grade 12 learners. The questionnaire assessed learners’ perceptions of the factors affecting performance in Mathematics Literacy. The study adopted a quantitative approach and followed a descriptive research design. The results showed that 28 Grade 12 learners from two secondary schools participated in the study. The study found that about 39.3% of the learners indicated that to some extent they found ML an interesting subject. Overall, 46.4% of the learners had a positive attitude towards ML. 25% of the learners were of the view that they would never choose ML again but would go for mathematics. 50% indicated that the teachers had average knowledge while about 18% indicated that their teachers answered averagely. In terms of teaching style, teachers generally used active learning. It emerged that most ML teachers use a combination of English and the home language of learners when teaching ML. A reasonable number of the learners said the language used by the teacher had no effect on their learning of ML. 35.7% argued that if the local language was to be used in classes they would do better to a very large extent. A sizeable number of learners found ML passages used in questions very difficult to understand. 50% indicated that ML tests and assessments given were relatively difficult to cope with. The study recommends changes in the language policies to accommodate the use of translanguaging as it has been deemed to have a positive impact on learner understanding of what is taught.

Author(s): Samson Matope, Shakespear Chiphambo


ANALYSING CHALLENGES ASSOCIATED WITH YOUNG DRIVERS IN ROAD TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS IN SOUTH AFRICA

Volume 78, Nov 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.11.6
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Abstract: Every year the lives of approximately 1.3 million people are cut short as a result of a road traffic crash, between 20 and 50 million more people suffer non-fatal injuries, with many incurring a disability as a result of their injury (World Health Organisation, 2022). Young drivers pose a high risk on the road globally even in South Africa is prevalent. Reckless and negligent driving is common among young drivers which put other road users at risk of being involved in road traffic accidents. Road traffic accidents is a burning issue for road traffic authorities in South Africa as more people are dying on the roads. The inability of young drivers to adhere to the rules of the road contribute immensely to the high rate of road traffic accidents in South Africa. This article focused on the challenges associated with young drivers in road traffic accidents. The article is based on a qualitatively rooted methodology including a wide range of primary and secondary sources. The article further draws on the findings from the world to counteract challenges associated with young drivers in road traffic accidents. The research based key steps leading to the prevention of road traffic accidents amongst young drivers. The first step related to the process of intensifying law enforcement on the road; strengthening road safety awareness campaigns; counteracting corruption at driving license testing centres (DLTC) to ensure that drivers are competent to drive on the public road.

Author(s): Modipa Mmakwena

STUDENTS’ DIFFICULTIES IN SOLVING PROBLEMS USING MATRICES: A CASE STUDY

Volume 78, Nov 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.11.5
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Abstract: Linear algebra is an important focus in the study of university mathematics. It is also used in other fields such as engineering, physics, and economics. Utilizing responses from online diagnostic quizzes, this study investigated the difficulties first-year mathematics students at a university encountered when solving problems using matrices. This paper reports on the analysis of students’ responses to four types of questions on matrices and their applications. To understand those students’ difficulties, this study focused on online items that tested: matrix multiplication; transpose of a matrix in the context of matrix multiplication; the inverse of a matrix, and the application of matrices. However, participating students had a high ability to multiply two matrices. This was supported by the interviewed student, who described matrix multiplication as very basic.

Author(s): Aneshkumar Maharaj, Mthobisi Ntuli


CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE SOUTH AFRICAN POLICE SERVICE’S READINESS FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF THE FOURTH INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION

Volume 78, Dec 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.12.2
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Abstract: It is argued that the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) is being touted as having the capacity to lift South Africa out of the challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequitable distribution of wealth. However, the state institutions such as the South African Police Service (SAPS) readiness for the enabling technologies of the 4IR is in question. This article sought to investigate the SAPS state of readiness for the technologies that enable the 4IR. A qualitative, exploratory, descriptive and contextual research design was used. Eight participants who were all senior managers in the SAPS, assigned to SAPS divisions at the national level, were purposively included in this study, and semi-structured interviews were conducted with them. The main theme revealed that the participants had adequate knowledge of what the concept “4IR” entails. Furthermore, what transpired is that 4IR technology products will be beneficial to the Findings of this research showed that there are numerous disadvantages in terms of resources in any form that are associated with 4IR institutionalisation and implementation. There are many challenges that will either prevent or delay the institutionalisation and implementation of the 4IR concept in the SAPS. Ultimately much work must be done to create capacity in the SAPS to institutionalise the 4IR. Furthermore, the study contributes tremendously to the body of knowledge where the 4IR in business operations are concerned.

Author(s): Jacob T. Mofokeng, Vanessa M. Grootboom; Adewale A. Olutola


EXPLORING THE PERCEPTIONS OF STAFF ON THE DECOLONISATION OF THE CURRICULUM AT ONE SELECTED SOUTH AFRICAN UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY

Volume 78, Nov 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.11.13
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Abstract: The curriculum is still colonised as students cannot relate to the curriculum. The call for decolonisation was based on recognition of student struggles in higher education with regards to racism created by the political education they were exposed to. This paper aims at exploring the perceptions of staff on decolonising the curriculum in higher education. A qualitative research approach using the interview method was adopted for this study. 5 selected participants form the sample size of this study. The collected data was analysed through thematic analysis. The general finding, however, indicate that the respondents share the same sentiments that a decolonized curriculum gives students a chance to embrace their embedded indigenous knowledge. Other findings emanating from the study are that culture and the use of different languages play a vital role in ensuring that decolonisation is implemented in higher education. One of the recommendations is that higher education institutions must ensure meaningful engagements and debates continue to take place within universities on the decolonisation of the curriculum. Added to this, it is recommended that universities must provide resources that allow and support such engagements. In order to decolonise teaching and learning practices, it is also recommended that universities consider embedding African experiences at the centre of pedagogy and rethink the manner in which teaching is conducted, which might have a positive impact on student learning experiences.

Author(s): Jeremiah Madzimure, Muntuwenkosi Chili


UNPACKING VAST EXPERIENCES OF HOMOPHOBIA IN THE INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER LEARNING AND THE COPING MECHANISMS EMPLOYED BY THE LGBTQIA+ STUDENTS

Volume 78, Nov 2022
doi: 10.21506/j.ponte.2022.11.12
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Abstract: One of the most misinterpreted and misunderstood social concepts is sexuality. Some misconceptions have arisen because of the identification and acceptance of heterosexuality as the "only" sexual practice. This paper examines the homophobic experiences of LGBTQIA students from various institutions of higher learning in the OR Tambo municipality. The frameworks used in the paper were social constructionism and the five faces of oppression. This paper is descriptive and exploratory, with a qualitative research design. It discovered that homophobia is prevalent in higher education institutions and that students demonstrated academic resilience and consistency.

Author(s): Kasa Luvo