Reitumetse Makwea

By Reitumetse Makwea


GUIDE: What is the status of SA’s universities for the 2021 academic year?

In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, here is the status of some institutions’ preparations, as of the first week of January 2021.

Following a tumultuous school year in 2020, tertiary institutions are preparing for a new academic year.

With the amended level 3 lockdown regulations placing a number of restrictions on South Africans, some institutions of higher learning are still preparing for the resumption of on-campus teaching.

While some universities have started with online registrations for the 2021 academic calendar, others will only be completing the 2020 academic calendar in February and March.

Here is the status of some institutions’ preparations, as of the first week of January 2021:

University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), Johannesburg

  • Students who are completing their 2020 academic year will be writing their examinations online.
  • The 2021 academic calendar will commence on 8 March 2021.
  • Students will be allowed to register online from 5 January to 5 March, according to their relevant year of study, faculty and programme.

University of Johannesburg (UJ)

  • Operations to continue just as they were before the year-end recess until further notice.
  • Students returned to campus on Monday, 4 January, for contact sessions.
  • Registration will commence on 25 January and close on 12 February for returning students. First years register on 23 February to 5 March.

University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN)

  • Won’t have physical contact sessions until the second semester.
  • First semester classes will be conducted online.
  • First-year students will be able to register from 23 February, until further notice.

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Tshwane University of Technology (TUT)

  • Will continue with remote-blended teaching and learning from 6 January 2021.
  • University will be in touch with students for whom it is mandatory to complete their practical sessions, to make arrangements.
  • Examination arrangements will be included in the 6 January 2021 communiqué.
  • Registrations will commence after the 2020 March/April academic calendar.

University of Cape Town (UCT)

  • Will commence with physically distanced learning in the first semester, from 15 March.
  • Students will be returning to residences in groups from early January 2021 and only students who have been invited to return to residences will be accepted.
  • Undergraduate teaching and learning, as well some postgraduate teaching, will be online.

University of Pretoria (UP)

  • Online registration commenced on Monday, 4 January.
  • Students will be returning in the second week of March.

This story will be updated as soon as more information becomes available.

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