The Faculty of Community and Health Sciences (FCHS) reviewed its curricula for 1994, allowing the Primary
Health Care (PHC) approach to be the foundation of teaching and learning in health. To institutionalize a
PHC approach, the teaching methodology of service-learning which is premised on the development of
partnerships, proved useful in realizing the faculty's goal.
The aim of this study was to identify how to ensure that partnerships develop optimally and in a sustainable
fashion to promote excellence and relevance in teaching and development of professional skills in FCHS.
A qualitative study was employed using focus groups with the partners in 2 service-learning programmes in
Key findings included that capacity building programmes for all partners promotes good training and
education in health sciences; partners' roles should be clarified and it's imperative that formalized
partnership agreements exist to ensure collaboration and enhance teaching.
Service-learning serves as an impetus to move higher education in the direction of multi-disciplinarity.