Amathuba: our new digital learning platform

30 June 2022

Dear colleagues and students

As you know, the implementation of our Vision 2030 is underway, and last year I announced that the University of Cape Town (UCT) would be adopting a new cloud-hosted digital learning platform as part of our Learning Platforms Update Project. In May this year, we put out a call for submission of suggested names for UCT’s new digital learning platform, which is powered by Brightspace.

I am excited to let you know that our new digital learning platform will be called Amathuba, a suggestion submitted by Ms Esmeralda Alexander. We thank Ms Alexander and the many staff and students who responded positively to the call for submission.

Amathuba is an isiXhosa word that means opportunities, chances, openings and prospects. Our new platform is a significant step to shaping and enhancing the future of digitally enabled education at UCT and to enhancing the learning experience for our students.

Vision 2030 is about unleashing human potential to create a fair and just society and Amathuba will be key to achieving equitable student success at our institution. As we look forward to rich and varied teaching and learning programmes in 2023, Amathuba will support the wide range of teaching modes used at UCT and help enable a high quality and consistent learning experience across all courses.

Amathuba, which is intuitive and easy to use, is equipped with powerful communication and assessment features. The mobile app will help students stay on top of their academic work, and enhanced analytics will keep lecturers informed about how students are progressing and when they may need help. Comprehensive accessibility support means digital learning will be inclusive, especially for students with disabilities, and because it is cloud-based, it will always be available when needed.

This coming semester 50 courses will use Amathuba as part of a pilot programme, and we look forward to welcoming all first-year students to Amathuba in 2023. We thank the faculties, course convenors and teaching teams for all the effort they have invested and will continue investing in this exciting transition, supported by our Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT).

I am so proud of the innovative and important strides we are making in our teaching and learning; this being but one of them.


Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng

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