Service Characteristics

Service Characteristics

Interest Group Focus

The CEM training programmes are customised to focus on the needs of specific interest groups within both the public and private sectors. The following focused training is offered:

  • Leadership awareness;
  • Political leadership at the local government level;
  • SHE representative skills;
  • Internal auditor skills and competence;
  • General staff awareness programmes;
  • Dedicated train-the-trainer programmes;
  • Specific skills transfer facilitation programmes such as enterprise-wide risk assessment and management programmes;
  • Implementation of management systems;
  • Legal compliance facilitation programmes; etc.

Sector Specialisation

The CEM has extensive experience in a wide range of sectors ranging from:

  • National government;
  • Provincial government;
  • Local and district municipal government;
  • Mining sector;
  • Chemical sector;
  • Manufacturing sector;
  • Engineering sector;
  • Construction sector;
  • Forestry sector;
  • Agricultural sector; and
  • Financial sector.

Training Philosopy and Approach

The general training philosophy of the CEM is to provide high quality, relevant, innovative and cutting-edge training solutions in all spheres of environmental, safety and health (SHE) management to facilitate change towards a sustainable and safe future.


The principles underpinning the sustained success of our training programmes are:

Combined Theoretical and Practical Teaching Philosophy

The CEM’s training strategy is to provide students with a sound theoretical foundation that is supported by appropriate practical assignments, with exposure to best-practice case examples.

For custom-made, in-house training programmes, practical assignments are generated in association with the client to ensure applicability to local needs, while value created is maximised.

Use of High Qualified and Experienced Facilitators

The CEM uses trainers that are:

  • Academically qualified and has extensive and relevant practical experience; and
  • Recognised as experts in their relevant fields of specialisation.
  • Facilitators are also regularly assessed by students to ensure sustained performance.

Well-Structured Course Material

Students are provided with course material of high quality. Course notes are often supported by case studies, resource kits, demonstrations and other additional enrichment material.

Course material is regularly reviewed and continually improved.

Regular Revision and Update of Courses

CEM courses are regularly reviewed, revised and updated. New course content and courses are added in accordance with the needs of students and clients, as well as developments in the knowledge base. CEM staff regularly attends conferences and conduct research to ensure that course content remains in line with the latest developments. The extension of CEM networks also ensures sustained growth in the CEM’s knowledge base.

Comprehensive Student Assessment and Moderation

In accordance with the philosophy of outcomes-based education, various methods are used to assess student performance, including:

  • Continuous student formative assessment;
  • Summative assessment of practical assignments (syndicate work);
  • Summative assessment in formal examinations (where applicable);
  • Summative assessment of take-away practical assignments (where applicable);
  • Optional peer evaluation of student participation in syndicate work;
  • CEM staff moderates all forms of assessment.

In order to meet SAQA and North-West University quality requirements, the CEM assessment process incorporates not only the grading of examination papers, but also a rigorous process involving moderation and independent approval of all assessment results by an internal CEM assessment panel.

To be awarded a Certificate of Successful Completion or a Letter of Attendance, students need to meet the applicable assessment criteria.

A second summative assessment opportunity is offered to qualifying students. Students must formally apply for a re-examination event (Applications for re-examination can be downloaded from – this website

Customer Satisfaction

The CEM philosophy is to exceed customer expectations at all times and in everything that we do. Customer satisfaction is therefore the CEM’s definition of victory.

The CEM routinely measures customer satisfaction across a range of our processes, services and products. Course administration and the administrative interactions with delegates are constantly rated as excellent with an average score of 95%. CEM tutor performance rated as excellent has improved from 78% in 2011 to 86% in 2014. Ninety four per cent rated the CEM training venues as excellent in 2014, up from 88% in 2011. Catering services average a rating of excellent of 88% for the period 2011 to 2014. The rating of the CEM’s public courses as excellent, measured as an overall impression, has also improved from 84% in 2011 to 87% in 2014.

Unsolicited comments by delegates about the excellence of administration support increased by 107% from 2011 to 2014. In 2014 sixty six per cent more comments have been received about the excellence of CEM courses compared with such comments in 2011, while comments about the excellence of tutors increased by 233,3% for the same period.

Continual improvement in CEM’s performance is assured by sustained sound planning, a rigorous non-conformity and complaints management system as well as a comprehensive quest for improvement opportunities.

Quality Management

The CEM has developed, documented and implemented a quality management system (QMS) based on the International Standard ISO 9001 to ensure the consistent delivery of high-quality short-course training services and short-course training events, as well as sustained customer satisfaction.

The QMS is regularly reviewed, revised and maintained to address changing circumstances and it is improved on an annual basis

All of the activities, products and services of the CEM are planned and managed to conform to the requirements of:

ISO 9001,
the North-West University;
applicable legal requirements, as well as
with the expectations of clients

The QMS meets the requirements of professional bodies such as the Southern African Auditor and Training Certification Authority (SAATCA) as well as the quality assurance requirements of the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA), the Higher Education Quality Committee (HEQC) and the North-West University (NWU).

© Centre for Environmental Management (CEM), North-West University, 2017. All rights reserved.