About Us


Saide is committed to the process of transformation of education and training. It is guided by its mission:

  • to increasing equitable and meaningful access to knowledge, skills and learning through the adoption of open learning principles and distance education methods.

What We Do

  • Promote open learning principles and quality distance education in key policy areas and in different educational sectors;
  • Support programmes in sound and innovative course design, materials development, learner support, management, and the use of technology, particularly for large scale provision;
  • Build knowledge about sound and innovative methods of opening learning through research, the development of resources, and the dissemination of information.

Our vision is a society in which all people value, have access to, and succeed in lifelong education and training of good quality that meets national and regional priorities in the context of the global knowledge economy.

Saide, the South African Institute for Distance Education, is a non-governmental organization based in Johannesburg but conducting projects throughout South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa. Saide's task is to contribute to the development of new models of open and distance education practice, that accord with and take forward the values, principles, and goals of the evolving education systems in the Southern African region. It has also paid particular attention to the appropriate use of technology in education and most recently established a Kenya-based initiative, OER Africa, to promote the development and sharing of OER on the African continent.

Launched in September 1992 by a group of prominent educationists, Saide seeks to employ innovative education methods in transforming education systems and redressing inequalities.

Saide is not an implementing agency. Rather it acts as an advocate, catalyst, and facilitator to bring about change in existing educational practices. As an independent organization that is not in competition with providers, Saide is in a unique position to facilitate networks and provide advice on the planning and implementation of distance education and the evaluation, development and sharing of courses and materials. Educational providers in South Africa and neighbouring countries have increasingly sought Saide's assistance in planning and evaluating their programmes, courses and systems and supporting them by facilitating professional development for their staff.

Since its inception Saide has developed an excellent reputation for the quality and effectiveness of its work, and for its ability to manage a wide range of projects.

Who We Work With

We work with/for both public and private educational providers, government departments and non-governmental organizations, and local and international funders.