I hope you and your families are well. We have successfully completed the first semester in remote learning mode. I realise that this has been a huge effort for all concerned, but most of you have succeeded despite the odds stacked against you. So, well done to you and your lecturers.
Now that we are one week into the second semester, I am writing to talk to you about:
The approach to marks and assessment during the second semester
On 3 August the Executive Committee of Senate approved that the extension of remote teaching to the fourth term requires the modality of assessment to be consistent with our approach in the first semester.
All the data at our disposal – from the results of the first semester to the Student Access Survey – supports the continuation of the pass/fail approach for all first semester half (F) courses. Given the extension of remote teaching to the end of the academic year, the following has been decided regarding pass/fail final results in second semester half (S), full year half (H) and full year (W) courses in the second semester for 2020:
As in the first semester, it is understood that the structure of the different LLB programmes in the Faculty of Law makes the application of this approach very difficult. It has therefore been agreed that the Faculty of Law will be exempted from this decision. Service courses offered to other faculties which have endorsed the pass/fail principle will have to fall in line with this principle.
Dropping second semester courses and fee rebates
As you remember, during the first semester we moved the deadline for dropping courses, with 100% fee rebate, to allow you, with the benefit of academic advice, to reduce your course load where you felt that you could not cope under remote teaching. With the second semester already having started in remote learning mode, the deadline for dropping courses, with the associated full fee rebate, has moved from 7 August 2020 to 16 August 2020.
Curriculum advisors have been alerted by their respective faculties that those of you who elect to manage your curriculum load by dropping second semester courses for which you are registered have until 16 August 2020 to do so. The 100% fee rebate will apply in such cases.
I wish you well in your studies this term.
Associate Professor Lis Lange
Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning
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Our scientists must not practise in isolation, but be encouraged to be creative and increase our knowledge of the needs of developing economies, write Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng, vice-chancellor of UCT, and Professor Thokozani Majozi from the University of the Witwatersrand.09 Jun 2020 - 6 min read Republished
South Africa has been recognised globally for its success in flattening the curve, which came as a result of President Ramaphosa responding quickly to the crisis, writes Prof Alan Hirsch.28 Apr 2020 - 6 min read Republished
In an email to the UCT community, Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng said:
“COVID-19, caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, is a rapidly changing epidemic. [...] Information [...] will be updated as and when new information becomes available.”
We are continuing to monitor the situation and we will be updating the UCT community regularly – as and when there are further updates. If you are concerned or need more information, students can contact the Student Wellness Service on 021 650 5620 or 021 650 1271 (after hours), while staff can contact 021 650 5685.