Online June exams, teaching being considered at Stellenbosch University
Cape Town - Stellenbosch University (SU) is considering holding its June exams online because the three-week winter recess for students had to be rescheduled for March/April because of the coronavirus pandemic.
SU rector and vice-chancellor Professor Wim de Villiers, said the university was committed to the completion of the 2020 academic year.
De Villiers said no student assessments were envisaged before May, and it was possible that the June exams would be conducted online.
In addition, the second term could extend later into June to make up for lost teaching time.
“SU management will provide clarity as soon as possible,” he said.
“The March recess has been extended for an additional two weeks for students. The second term will now start on April 20.
“As we are unsure whether contact teaching will resume on that day, SU shall be ready to implement online teaching for undergraduate, Honours and Master’s students,” he said.
SU Student Representative Council chairperson Lewis Mboko said the SRC was working on different scenarios.
“Right now we are working on trying to ensure that all the students will have access to online learning.
“The university already provided space.
“We are now putting our efforts into including everyone and also finding ways to provide further assessments to students who might face difficulties because of the online system when the exams are taken,” Mboko said.
SA Students’ Congress (Sasco) deputy chairperson Buyile Matiwane said they supported all attempts to save the academic year, “but we remain acutely mindful of the existing inequalities in the sector”.
Matiwane said the provision of online exams could exacerbate the present class inequalities in the sector as many students did not have adequate access to facilities that would enable them to participate meaningfully.
“The other problem would be
the lack of systems in many universities to efficiently conduct online exams.
“This would further disadvantage students,” he said.