Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Maritime Affairs


Ph.D (Maritime Affairs)


Malmö, Sweden


South Africa

First Advisor

L. Froholt


This study primarily explores whether or not the use of emerging technologies can be used to counter a lack of available resources in developing countries. The research takes the form of a case study conducted over three successive semesters at a South African University of Technology maritime campus, with the subjects being the Marine Engineering students at a senior level. The study makes extensive use of concept mapping to introduce digital syllabi according to scaffold learning principles, and thereafter to implement a range of selected learning methods based on prominent learning theories to address the needs of the students, as identified by the surveyed data received.

Throughout the eighteen-month classroom case study, an action research method was employed to sequentially evaluate the outcomes at each phase, and amend the devised CBT program in line with addressing the research question posed. It was the intention to ascertain if any noticeable changes were evident with regards to the development of critical thinking skills on the part of the students, which would indicate a higher level of learning. The development of critical thinking skills is in line with the desire of the South African government to develop of a skills-based economy for the country, away from an historical past whereby the following of a system was often viewed above the need for critical thinking.