Wits goes online from Monday

Wits University will switch to remote online teaching and learning from the 20th of this month. The university's joining several schools and varsities countrywide who've moved to e-learning during the COVID-19 lockdown. An agreement with Telkom, MTN, Vodacom and Cell C to zero-rate Wits’ library and learning management sites from today has been finalised. Courtesy #DStv403

JOHANNESBURG - Wits University said it will switch to remote online teaching and learning from Monday.

The university is joining a number of schools and varsities countrywide who've moved to e-learning during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Wits says it's making contingency plans for those who don't have access to digital devices and data.

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"Our students will have to exercise their own agency and will have to make an extraordinary effort to adapt to remote online learning, with the requisite support from facilities, particularly over the next few months," a statement from the institution read.

The university has established a mobile computing bank for qualifying students who cannot access appropriate mobile learning devices to loan basic devices pre-loaded with required learning resources before being delivered to the South African Post Office to students.

The cost of the device will be added to students’ fee accounts and will be reversed if the device is returned in good order at the end of the 2020 academic year.

READ: COVID-19: University students call for class cancellations

The students most in need will be prioritised when devices are allocated, the university said.

The University has finalised an agreement with four telecommunications service providers: Telkom, MTN, Vodacom and Cell C to zero-rate Wits’ library and learning management sites from 15 April 2020.

The full list of zero-rated sites is available via this link.

READ: Schools, some universities closed amid COVID-19 spread

In cases where students do not have access to any device or data, other options are being explored, including the possibility of using Sapo to deliver paper-based material to students.

The university said additional support will be made available for students when contact teaching resumes, and particularly for students who will have had difficulty in transitioning to online learning. 

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Source
eNCA