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Everyone must take a stand against rape culture must take a stand against rape cultureLouise du Toit<p>​It is crucial that all South Africans support campaigns against the rape culture in our country, writes Prof Louise du Toit of the Department of Philosophy in an opinion piece published in Cape Times on Tuesday (12 April 2016).</p><ul><li><p>Read the complete article below or click <a href="/english/Documents/newsclips/LduToit_Cape%20Times_April%202016.pdf" style="text-decoration:underline;"><strong>here</strong></a> to read the piece as published.<br></p></li></ul><p><strong>Putting the spotlight on 'rape culture'</strong></p><p><strong>Louise du Toit</strong></p><p>The Student Representative Council (SRC) of Stellenbosch University (SU) recently launched a campaign to fight against 'rape culture' on campus. The term 'rape culture' triggered an avalanche of emotional responses, but seemingly without leading to any attempts to clarify what the term may mean. </p><p>Unfortunately, lack of conceptual clarity, especially with regards to an emotive term such as 'rape culture', often leads to miscommunication, misunderstanding, heated debates and high rhetoric, which hinder rather than promote much needed concerted action.</p><p>When thinking about or discussing the term 'rape culture' or 'rape-prone' culture, it is important to keep in mind that it does not mean that actual rape has become the literal norm, or even that a majority of cultural members become involved in it.  Rather, it means that there is a pervasive culture in a country or institution which renders rape a meaningful or easy option for would-be offenders. </p><p>With April being Sexual Assault Awareness Month, it is important to consider the term 'rape culture' and its origins to avoid clouding the issue through conceptual obscurity.</p><p>It was coined in the 1970s by second-wave American feminists such as Noreen Connell and Susan Brownmiller, when feminists for the very first time placed sexual violence on political and academic agendas. This is indicative of the ancient history of women's sexual oppression: that the theme appeared in public consciousness only so late in modern western history.  </p><p>Connell, Brownmiller and other feminists basically meant two things by 'rape culture', namely that rape and other forms of sexual violence are much more pervasive than most people think and will like to admit, and that rape and other forms of sexual violence are to some extent normalised and trivialised by mainstream cultural practices and perspectives. They thus drew attention to how misogynist cultures, jokes, media, role models, and so on, have the effect of normalising or naturalising sexual violence against women. </p><p>Not only South Africa, but also the USA, Australia, Canada, India, and Pakistan have all been accused of sustaining 'rape cultures' (or, in the words of American anthropologist Peggy Reeves Sanday, 'rape-prone' cultures). Add to this the sexual violence perpetrated against women and girls during armed conflicts – even by peace-keeping forces – and it becomes clear that 'rape cultures' are indeed much more prevalent than we think. </p><p>Since 'rape culture' seems to be pervasive in certain countries, one must ask what the factors are that may contribute to this phenomenon. Among these, we can highlight the following: (i) practices of blaming and shaming the victims rather than the offenders; (ii) rape jokes; (iii) trivialising or denying the harms of rape; (iv) high-profile figures who get away with misogynist behaviour; (v) the denial that men and boys are also victims of sexual violence; (vi) official investigative, medical or other procedures that subject rape victims to secondary victimisation and traumatisation; (vii) institutions that place their reputation, brand and public image above the sexual integrity of their members; (viii) naturalising rape as a tendency of male sexuality as such; (ix) trivialising sexual violence as 'rough sex'; (x) selective, e.g. racist or classist applications of the sanction of sexual violence; (xi) apathy displayed by the relevant authorities; (xii) reinforcing of sexual stereotypes such as female sexual passivity and male sexual agency or even force; (xiii) general tolerance of sexist behaviour and institutionalised disrespect for women;  and (ix) fraternity practices that treat sex with women as a competition amongst men.</p><p>​Regarding our own context, the stakes in this type of debate are undoubtedly high, because nothing less is at stake than the full citizenship of women and girls (as the primary victims of sexual violence) in post-apartheid South Africa. We have witnessed countless times how sexual violence and the threat of such violence are being used as effective means of stripping women of their political status and reducing them to voiceless, obedient, fearful, second-class citizens. The extent of sexual violence in South Africa is very well documented – we have one of the highest incidences in the world – and it poses a substantial threat to our democratic project as a whole. With this in mind, campaigns like the one initiated by Stellenbosch University's SRC are important political struggles that we should all support. Not just universities, but also society as a whole stands to benefit from such initiatives.</p><p>*Prof Louise du Toit is Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Stellenbosch University. She is the author of the book, A Philosophical Investigation of Rape: the making and unmaking of the feminine self.</p><p> </p><p><br></p>
SU names building after Krotoa names building after KrotoaCorporate Communication and Marketing Division<p>​The RW Wilcocks building of Stellenbosch University (SU) has been renamed the Krotoa building. This building on the Stellenbosch campus houses the departments of History and Psychology, the Division of Research Development, SU International, the SU Archives, as well as the Centre for Research on Evaluation, Science and Technology.<br></p><p>Krotoa (1642–1674), a woman of the Khoe people, lived at the Cape in the time of Jan van Riebeeck, who came to establish a settlement for the Dutch East India Company (the VOC) at the tip of Africa in 1652. Named “Eva" by the Dutch, Krotoa served as, among others, an interpreter and interlocutor between her people and the VOC. <a href=""><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Click here</strong></a> to read more about her.</p><p>SU's Executive Committee of Council (EC(C)) approved the renaming at its meeting of 16 August 2021 after the Rectorate received a shortlist of proposals from the Committee for the Naming of Buildings, Venues and Other Facilities/Premises in June. Following extensive debate and taking various aspects into consideration, including Krotoa's complex personal history, the Rectorate proposed the name to the EC(C). </p><p>“The name Krotoa is particularly significant now that we are celebrating Women's Month. Apart from a few residences, no SU buildings have previously been named after women," says Dr Ronel Retief, Registrar and chair of the Naming Committee. </p><p>“The Rectorate also considered it important that the name, although linked to a historical figure, has symbolic value and, as such, represents more than simply a person. The name Krotoa is not only linked to a woman, but also to an entire underrepresented group of people indigenous to Southern Africa and the area now known as the Western Cape. As such, it acknowledges the heritage of the First Nation people of our region, and we also acknowledge something of our shared and complex history.</p><p>“In addition, Krotoa's role as interpreter between different cultural and language groups is a demonstration of bridge building, which is particularly relevant to conversations on multilingualism, inclusivity and creating a mutual understanding between different groups of people," Retief concludes. </p><p>“So, with this name, we wish to send a strong message about our commitment to transformation and redress at SU."</p><p>Dr Leslie van Rooi, Senior Director of Social Impact and Transformation, and member of both SU's Visual Redress and Naming committees, adds: “SU acknowledges the role and place of the First Nation people in the broader history of Southern Africa. The significance of linking the name Krotoa to a prominent building on campus should also be understood against the backdrop of ongoing conversations about supporting and formalising Khoekhoegowab language-related courses at SU. </p><p>“SU decided in 2019 already to call the new dining hall of Goldfields residence Sada Oms, a Khoekhoegowab term for 'our home'. Therefore, this added symbolic acknowledgement through the Krotoa building forms part of our ongoing partnership and engagement with the First Nation people of Southern Africa.</p><p>“Conversations about the name, also with the relevant Khoe structures, gives recognition to Krotoa as an important figure, but does not ignore her complex, tragic history as a person."</p><p>Installations contextualising both the Wilcocks and the Krotoa stories are being planned for inside and outside the building.</p><p><strong>Process</strong></p><p>Back in 2019 already, the Rectorate gave approval for the Registrar and the Senior Director of Social Impact and Transformation to follow an institutional and inclusive process for the renaming of the Wilcocks building.</p><p>As part of the process, various stakeholders were interviewed. The University also notified more than 100 community organisations and institutions of the planned renaming. These included the Stellenbosch Co-management Forum (including Die Vlakte Forum), Stellenbosch Municipality, the Western Cape Education Department (Stellenbosch), the Stellenbosch Civil Advocacy Network, and the Stellenbosch Ratepayers' Association, all of whom have seats on the University's Institutional Forum.</p><p>A <a href="/english/rw-wilcocks-building"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">call for proposals</strong></a> was distributed among all staff and students as well as members of the community (as represented by the structures serving on SU's Institutional Forum) in July 2020. In October 2020, the Naming Committee, which had been expanded for the purpose of renaming the RW Wilcocks building, agreed on the process to arrive at a short list. The 17 proposals received were subsequently whittled down to the most suitable options, which were presented to the Rectorate. </p><p>The Rectorate also requested that the relevant stakeholder groups be approached to determine whether there would be any opposition to using the name Krotoa in the context of SU. Keen support for the use of the name was expressed by the relevant leaders and representatives of the First Nations structures.</p><p>A date for the unveiling of the new name is yet to be determined. In the meantime, SU's new Visual Redress Policy will serve before Council for approval in September. </p><p><strong>More information</strong></p><p>The RW Wilcocks building was opened in 1966 and named after Prof Raymond William Wilcocks, who was Rector of the University from 1935 to 1954.</p><p>The renaming of the RW Wilcocks building forms part of a long-term and extensive visual redress process on SU's campuses in an attempt not only to remove certain symbols, but also to introduce new visual symbols that point to a shared history, our diverse stories, and public spaces that are welcoming to all.</p><p>This process was launched a few years ago, and much progress has been made in recent years to create student and staff-friendly living and work spaces that meet the needs of a diverse group of students, staff and other stakeholders, and at the same time promote a welcoming campus culture.</p><p><strong>Recent name changes at SU:</strong></p><p>Some name changes over the past few years include the Coetzenburg Centre (previously the DF Malan Centre), the Stellenbosch University Library (previously JS Gericke Library), the <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=6115"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Adam Small​ Theatre Complex</strong></a> (previously HB Thom Theatre), <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=5997"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Pieter ​Okkers House</strong></a> (7 Joubert Street, now named after the first resident of the building, Mr Pieter JA Okkers, 1875-1952) and <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=5315"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Simon N​koli House</strong></a><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1"> </strong>(39 Victoria Street).</p><p>Recently constructed buildings have been given the following names: Russel Botman House (named after the late Prof Russel Botman), Ubuntu House, <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=5662"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Nk​osi Johnson House</strong></a> and the <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=5422"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Jan</strong> <strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Mouton Learning Centre</strong></a>.</p><p><strong>Other recent projects:</strong></p><ul><li><a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=6690"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">“The Circle</strong></a><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">"</strong>, a bronze art installation featuring 11 phenomenal South African women thought leaders (including Krotoa), which was erected on the Rooiplein towards the end of 2019</li><li>Welcoming messages carved on benches in public areas on campus in 15 languages, including in Braille, South African Sign Language and San</li><li>Installation of a map of Die Vlakte at the entrance of the Arts and Social Sciences building, which is built on land from where families were evicted under the Group Areas Act in the 1960s</li><li>The creation of the <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=6727"><strong class="ms-rteForeColor-1">Lückhoff Living Museum</strong></a></li><li>Displaying the University's Centenary restitution statement at the SU Library<br><br><br></li></ul>
Women refuse to be silent about rape culture refuse to be silent about rape culture Amanda Gouws<p>Women are tired of being blamed for rape and are no longer willing to be silent, writes Prof Amanda Gouws of the Department of Political Science in her regular column in <em>Die Burger </em>on Tuesday (3 May 2016).</p><ul><li><p>Read the complete article below or click <a href="/english/Documents/newsclips/AmandaGouws_DieBurger_3Mei2016.pdf" style="text-decoration:underline;"><strong>here</strong></a> for the piece as published.​<br></p></li></ul><p><strong>Amanda Gouws</strong></p><p>Stellenbosch University experienced its second "topless" protest last Thursday when female students strongly expressed their opposition to a rape culture on campus. The ​protest was also in solidarity with the "RUReferencelist" – the list of 11 names of so-called rapists at Rhodes University, where women students also staged a "topless" protest.</p><p>This type of protest supports the protests against rape culture at American universities and the "Femen" phenomenon that began in the Ukraine. Femen is a group of feminists who protest against the treatment of women, wearing only their panties and with slogans written on their bodies. They have taken their protests to many European countries. The question is whether their protests convey the right message or whether men rather see them as sex objects, thus defeating the object of their protests.</p><p>A rape culture refers to circumstances that support the normalisation of rape. On university campuses, this is about attitudes, beliefs, and practices at residences where women are treated with disrespect or humiliated or their human dignity violated. These types of circumstances normalise rape because gender violence is not taken seriously and women are often blamed for rape. They also make it more difficult or women to report rape.</p><p>A rape culture buys in to rape myths such as the following: why was she on the street so late?, why was she wearing a short dress?, why was she drinking?, she was asking for it, etc. The Zuma rape trial was a striking example of buying into rape myths: at the court, people (many of them women) sang "burn the bitch" and burned a photograph of the victim and threw stones at her. She was the one on trial – not Zuma. The prosecutor called her a "serial rape accuser" who didn't know the difference between consensual and non-consensual sex. The view was that rape did NOT happen, rather than that it did.</p><p>Secondary victimization is often at the order of the day in court, which is why many women do not report rape. Carol Smart, in her 1989 book <em>The Power of Law</em>, writes about how in the case of rape the law dismisses the experiences of women, denounces them as liars and humiliates them, while the perpetrators often literally get away with rape.</p><p>"Date rape" on campuses is common, but few cases are reported because women students often blame themselves for getting into the situation where "no" is interpreted as "yes". They do not trust the campus procedures to vindicate them. These are the underlying conditions of rape culture and women are no longer willing to be silent, because the perpetrators are sitting in class with them.</p><p>From a legal perspective, disclosing the names of so-called rapists, is however, highly problematic because a person is innocent until found guilty in court, which can take years. In the meantime, women who make allegations can be prosecuted for libel or defamation. The Rector of Rhodes incurred the wrath of students when he said that men whose names appeared on the list would not be handed over so that they could be "named and shamed".</p><p>Rape destroys women's lives. False accusations shatter lives too. Women are tired of being blamed. They are saying: "don't teach women to prevent rape – teach men not to rape". Rape culture will remain a problem until many men learn that they are not entitled to sex at the end of a date. </p>
Africa Day: Addressing key issues to take Africa forward Day: Addressing key issues to take Africa forwardCorporate Communication & Marketing / Korporatiewe Kommunikasie & Bemarking<p>​Africa Day is celebrated annually on 25 May. In opinion pieces for the media, experts at Stellenbosch University focus on a few key issues that should be addressed to help Africa reach its full potential and become a global powerhouse. Click on the links below to read the articles.<br></p><ul><li>​Prof Brian Ganson (<a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">Daily Maverick</strong></a>)<br></li><li>Prof Ursula van Beek (<a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">Cape Times</strong></a>)<br></li><li>Prof Pregala Pillay & Dr Chris Jones (<a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">News24</strong></a>)<br></li><li>Dr Gibson Ncube (<a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0" style="">Mail & Guardian</strong></a>)​<br></li></ul><p>​<br></p>
Disability studies could help end discrimination against people who stutter studies could help end discrimination against people who stutter Corporate Communication & Marketing / Korporatiewe Kommunikasie & Bemarking [Alec Basson]<p>​Stuttering can be debilitating and frustrating. This is something Dr Dane Isaacs knows all too well. As a person who stutters, he had to overcome many barriers and had to deal with oppression and discrimination all his life.<br></p><p>“Growing up with a stutter has not been the easiest experience. I have been bullied, discriminated against and endured various social and psychological challenges," says Isaacs. <br></p><p>“My stutter has also had a negative impact on my masculine identity. As a man who stutters, I have often felt weak, emasculated and not being able to live up to society's expectation of what it means to be a man. These experiences have always left me wondering about the disabling and masculinity experience of people who stutter."<br></p><p>Despite these challenges, Isaacs, who is a researcher at the Human Sciences Research Council, has managed to reach the pinnacle of academic success when he recently obtained his doctorate in Psychology at Stellenbosch University. His study explored the disabling and masculinity experiences of young adult men who stutter.<br></p><p>As part of his research, Isaacs described his own experience of discrimination, oppression and disablement at church, school, university and in the workplace (autoethnography). He also conducted interviews and held focus group discussions with young adult men (aged 20–39 years) from Cape Town and Stellenbosch who stutter to learn more about their disabling and masculinity experiences.  <br></p><p><strong>Vulnerable</strong></p><p>Isaacs says his findings showed that these men predominately drew on hegemonic or dominant norms and practices of masculinities to construct their own masculine identities. </p><p>“For them, being a man typically involved occupying a position of power and control, being the provider, being heterosexual and exerting physical strength. Several men perceived stuttering to be in direct contradiction to what it meant to be a man. For them, the exercise of control over speech denoted manliness.<br></p><p>“As a result, they commonly reported a reduced self-esteem and self-confidence and feeling weak, vulnerable, emasculated and shameful as men who stutter. <br></p><p>“For some, the marginalised position they occupied as men who stutter motivated them to gain control over their stutter and improve their performance of hegemonic masculinities. For others, the marginalised position of stuttering resulted in them rejecting dominant ideas of masculinities and constructing masculine identities accepting of their stutter." <br></p><p>Isaacs adds that some of the men (students who had a severe stutter) believed that stuttering was a disability. “They shared experiences of emasculation, disablement and oppression, and were strong advocates for the disability rights of people who stutter." <br></p><p>He says although young professionals agreed that stuttering is a disability, they did not see themselves as disabled men. <br></p><p>“Interestingly, some of these men reported being disabled by their stutter earlier in life. However, the fact that they could exercise control over their stutter and achieve career success, allowed them to reject the identity of a disabled man, which they typically associated with weakness and vulnerability.<br></p><p>“They also rejected the idea of advocating for reasonable accommodation for people who stutter in the workplace." <br></p><p>Isaacs mentions that some men completely rejected the idea of stuttering as a disability and believed it was a developmental speech disorder that can be controlled with proper techniques. <br></p><p>According to Isaacs, three things fuel the discrimination and oppression that these men and other people who stutter experience. <br></p><p>He explains: “Firstly, it is ignorance and myths about stuttering. Secondly, it's the dominant view of stuttering as a speech production disorder that can be fixed, managed or controlled. By viewing stuttering in this way, the responsibility of stuttering is placed solely on the individual who stutters, while society's role in this oppression and discrimination remains hidden and unaddressed. <br></p><p>Thirdly, people who stutter also discriminate against and oppress each other. When rejecting the identity of a disabled man, people who stutter are hesitant to advocate for the disability rights of others just like them and to address the challenges they all face." </p><p><strong>Support</strong></p><p>Isaacs says more should be done to support people who stutter. They should not merely be accommodated but should be treated as valuable members of society.</p><p>“Although there are associations and support and self-help groups that aim to ensure the full participation of people who stutter in all spheres of society, many of these organisations focus primarily on fixing, managing or controlling of stuttering instead of addressing issues of disablement, discrimination and oppression. <br></p><p>“We should design policies that promote the needs and disability rights of people who stutter and allow them to participate fully in educational spaces (schools, universities) and the workplace as these are some of the most oppressive and disabling places for them. They should also be consulted in the design of policies, programmes, courses and curriculums aimed at ensuring their full participation." <br></p><p>Isaacs adds that a disability studies approach should become part of speech-language therapy. <br></p><p>“I believe that the full participation of people who stutter will only occur if stuttering is approached through a disability studies lens. By approaching stuttering through a disability studies lens, attention will be directed to the social and political aspects of stuttering, which is important for addressing the oppression, disablement and discrimination encountered by people who stutter." <br></p><p>Isaacs says he will continue to explore innovative ways to promote the disability rights of people who stutter. “I am determined to see the discrimination and oppression of people who stutter eradicated in my lifetime." <br></p><p><strong>FOR MEDIA ENQUIRIES ONLY</strong></p><p>Dr Dane Isaacs</p><p>Human Sciences Research Council</p><p>Cape Town</p><p><strong>ISSUED BY</strong></p><p>Martin Viljoen</p><p>Manager: Media</p><p>Corporate Communication and Marketing</p><p>Stellenbosch University</p><p>Tel: 021 808 4921</p><p>Email: <a href=""></a> </p><p> </p><p>​<br></p>
Children’s rights being ignored’s rights being ignoredMarianne Strydom<p>​​The 16 days of activism for no violence against women and children kick off on Monday (November 25). In an opinion article for <em>Die Burger</em>, Dr Marianne Strydom of the Department of Social Work writes about how children's rights are still being undermined. The article was originally written in celebration of International Children's Day (20 November).<br></p><ul><li><p>Read the article below or click <a href="/english/Documents/newsclips/Strydom_DieBurger_23Nov2019.pdf" style="text-decoration:underline;"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0" style="text-decoration:underline;">here</strong></a><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0" style="text-decoration:underline;">​</strong> for the published version.</p></li></ul><p><strong>Children's rights being ignored</strong><br></p><p><strong>Marianne Strydom*</strong><br></p><p>International Children's Day has been celebrated annually on November 20 since 1954. Given that this day is primarily aimed at promoting the well-being of children, a strong emphasis is placed on advancing and raising awareness about children's rights. However, the fact that children have rights and are aware of them does not mean that those rights are realised on their behalf. In South Africa, many children may be aware of their rights because they are part of the school curriculum. But in their daily lives, the fact that they are aware of their rights often does not make much difference to their reality.</p><p>One of these realities is poverty. Approximately 14 million children in South Africa live in poverty. Although a large number of these children receive a Child Support Grant, it is important to remember that this grant is only R430 per month and is only paid out to households where the income is less than R4000 per month for single parents, and R8000 if both parents are in the household.<br></p><p>Poverty is particularly linked to unemployment, which is another reality for South Africa's children. About a third of the slightly over 19 million children in the country live in households where no adult has a permanent job. Thus in a household where there is no income or where the only income is the child grant. Under these circumstances, children have little control, and more than five million children suffer from hunger-related illnesses. This despite their constitutional right to basic nutrition.<br></p><p>An important argument for children's rights is that children need special protection because they are some of the most vulnerable members of society because of their dependence on care and protection of parents or family. If family care fails, the state must take responsibility. Children not only have a constitutional right to be cared for by their families, but also to appropriate alternative care when family care fails. Furthermore, the child has the right to social services.</p><p>Poverty and unemployment are strongly linked to the neglect of children. Children also have the right to be protected from any form of neglect, abuse and humiliation. Statistics on child neglect in South Africa are high, indicating a need as well as the right to social services. However, the child's right to social services is influenced by structural challenges in the welfare sector. Charities, in particular, experience challenges such as the lack of vehicles to assess the circumstances of children and families, insufficient staff, and a lack of resources in communities. These challenges result in few preventative services being provided, which means that children must be removed from their families and placed in alternative care, such as foster care.<br></p><p>Thus, children's constitutional right to social services and the right to parental care are not always feasible. In practice, the child's right to care in the family and the provision of services to promote family maintenance means that the child's right to social services is realised in the right to alternative care. The child can therefore be removed because of the structural challenges that exist in welfare organisations and communities. A step that causes tremendous trauma for the child.<br></p><p>The date of November 20 is important because it is the day on which the United Nations adopted the Declaration on the Rights of the Child in 1959, as well as the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989. It is important that we celebrate International Children's Day because children, especially those under the age of six, have very little power to realise their rights themselves (such as not being hungry, for example), without the full support of the State.<br></p><p>South Africa is a signatory of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. This means that the State has an obligation to protect the basic rights of all children in South Africa. However, we still have a long way to go before this becomes a reality.<br></p><p><strong>*Dr Marianne Strydom is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Social Work at Stellenbosch University</strong>.​<br></p><p><br></p>
Political Studies Association honours SU’s Pierre du Toit Studies Association honours SU’s Pierre du ToitCorporate Marketing/Korporatiewe Bemarking <p>The South African Association of Political Studies (SAAPS) has honoured Stellenbosch University’s (SU) Prof Pierre du Toit with its prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. </p><p>SAAPS is the oldest professional and subject association for political scientists in the country with one of its aims to recognise scholars (students and lecturers) for their scientific contribution to SAAPS and political science in general. </p><p>The Lifetime Achievement Award is based on a peer review of a scholar's work and recognises exceptional and internationally-recognised sustained scholarship over a period. Du Toit, of SU’s Department of Political Science, has been recognised for this work on, inter alia, democratisation and South Africa’s democratic transition. </p><p>He received the award at the Association’s recent Awards Ceremony that formed part of its National Conference held at the University of the Western Cape. </p><p>In his acceptance speech, Du Toit reflected on the rewards of an academic career (which he called a vocation rather than a mere job) by focusing on research, methodology, teaching and academic discipline. </p><p>SAAPS congratulated Du Toit for his major academic contribution and wished him well for the future. </p><p>Prof Hennie Kotze, former dean of SU’s Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, received the award in 2014. </p><p>Photo: Proff Pierre du Toit and Amanda Gouws of the Department of Political Science<br></p><p> </p>
What will the future workplace, workforce look like? will the future workplace, workforce look like?Natasha Winkler-Titus & Daniel le Roux<p>Saturday 1 May was Workers' Day. In opinion pieces for the media, Drs Natasha Winkler-Titus (Stellenbosch University Business School) and Daniel le Roux (Department of Information Science) highlight important issues that could shape the workplace and the workforce of the future. Click on the links below to read the articles.<br></p><ul><li>​Dr Natasha Winkler-Titus (<a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0" style="">The Conversation</strong></a>)</li><li>Dr Daniel le Roux (<a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0" style="">Mail & Guardian</strong></a>)</li></ul><p>​<br></p>
SU’s Extended Degree Programme provides comprehensive student support’s Extended Degree Programme provides comprehensive student supportAsiphe Nombewu /Corporate Communication<p>​​​​​​​​​Thanks to the Extended Degree Programme (EDP), the future is full of possibilities for students such as Axola Dlepu, a BA Social Dynamics student who gained access to the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at Stellenbosch University (SU) through the programme.</p><p>This innovative programme was instituted at SU in 2008 to deal with systemic obstacles to equity and student success and to assist students with additional academic support.</p><p>Coordinator of the programme, Dr Anita Jonker, says the EDP's role is to redress past inequalities and transform higher education by responding to new realities and opportunities.</p><p>According to Jonker, the programme is open to students who are interested in studying towards a Bachelor's degree with an average of 60–64,9% in their National Senior Certificate (NSC). She added that the National Benchmark Test (NBT) results, students' socio-economic status, as well as availability of places, are taken into consideration in EDP admissions.</p><p>EDP and mainstream students obtain the same degrees after completion of their undergraduate studies. The only difference is that EDP students do their first year over two years. Over and above their mainstream subjects, EDP students take modules that prepare them better for their graduate studies, such as Texts in the Humanities, Information Skills and Introduction to the Humanities.</p><p>In the first-year Texts in the Humanities, the focus is on academic reading and writing, plagiarism and referencing, , rhetorical structure, , text-linguistic characteristics, critical thinking and argumentation. The lectures are presented in separate Afrikaans and English classes to provide optimal academic support in students' preferred medium of instruction.</p><p>In Introduction to the Humanities EDP students are introduced to four different subject-fields, with a specific focus on multilingual technical concepts that provide a foundation for other subject fields in the Humanities and Social Sciences. All the terminology and lecture notes are available in English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa and interpreters give students the opportunity to participate in lectures in their mother-tongues.</p><p>Students who speak Afrikaans, Kaaps and other related language varieties have a tutor, Jocelyn Solomons, who facilitates the tutorial discussions in these language varieties, and those who speak English and, inter alia, isiXhosa, have a tutor, Busiswa Sobahle, who facilitates the tut discussions in English and isiXhosa.</p><p>Extensive extra-curricular support is integrated into the academic offering to enhance student success. This includes the EDP mentor programme, which has received co-curriculum recognition and which is coordinated by Ms Shona Lombard. Here senior EDP students mentor first-year students with similar BA programmes and help them to adjust to the new challenges of university life.</p><p>Expressing his gratitude for being chosen to be part of the programme, Dlepu said, “The EDP programme has helped me a lot with academic support alongside being mentored. It made my life a lot easier than that of a mainstream first-year student."</p><p>The 20-year-old from Saldanah Bay encouraged other students in the EDP to use the programme to shine.</p><p>He said the EDP modules gave students a broader worldview and taught them how to engage with multilingual students from diverse cultural and religious backgrounds.</p><p>Bavani Naicker, a 20-year-old BA Social Dynamics student from KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) described the EDP as a comprehensive support system. She said they were given foundational knowledge to assist them in their studies.</p><p>“My highlight of the course was when we visited Parliament and interacted with representatives of the different political parties," she said.</p><p>Chloe Krieger, a BA International Studies student from Cape Town, said if it were not for EDP, she would have dropped out in her first year. “The EDP taught us crucial literacy and life skills that the basic education system failed to teach the majority of students."</p><p>Krieger said that the EDP helped her to develop an awareness about critical issues that she would not otherwise have been aware of. “I was also inspired to be an activist and to be an agent for change. I am currently serving on the 2019/2020 SRC and I am learning so much about issues that marginalised groups on campus face that many people overlook," she said.</p><p>Students who have provisionally been admitted to the EDP and their parents/guardians are invited to the first meeting with EDP lecturers and mentors on Friday, 24 January 2020 from 09:30 to 12:00 in Room 3001 of the Wilcocks Building at 52 Ryneveld Street.</p><p>Prospective students who want to read more about the EDP, can consult the EDP website at <a href="/english/faculty/arts/edp/home"></a><br><br></p>
SU improves its position on QS subject rankings improves its position on QS subject rankingsCorporate Communication & Marketing / Korporatiewe Kommunikasie & Bemarking [Alec Basson]<p>​​Stellenbosch University (SU) can count itself among the leading higher education institutions globally in the broad subject areas of Life Science and Medicine, Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences and Management, Engineering & Technology, and Natural Sciences. This is according to the <a href=""><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0"><strong>2023 Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings by Subjec</strong></span><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0"><strong>t</strong></span></a><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0"> </span>released on Wednesday (22 March 2023). </p><p>For the 2023 edition, 1 597 institutions were ranked across 54 subjects in the abovementioned five broad subject areas. More than 16,4 million unique papers published between 2016-2020, producing close to 117,8 million citations in 2016–2021, were analysed.<br></p><p>SU improved its standing in four of these subject areas. It achieved a top 250 spot in Life Science and Medicine and is now ranked in the top 350 in Arts and Humanities, top 450 in Engineering & Technology, top 400 in Social Sciences and Management, and top 500 in Natural Sciences.</p><p><strong>Leading in SA</strong></p><p>As far as specific subject categories are concerned, SU improved its global position in Environmental Sciences and Medicine having moved into the top 250. It is the leading university in South Africa in Agriculture & Forestry (74th in the world) and Theology, Divinity & Religious Studies, and Development Studies (both in the top 100), Chemical Engineering (top 300) and Mechanical, Aeronautical & Manufacturing Engineering (top 350). For a second year in a row, SU is ranked number one in South Africa in Agriculture & Forestry and Theology, Divinity & Religious Studies, and second in Education (top 350), Pharmacy & Pharmacology (top 300), Business & Management Studies (top 500), Psychology (top 330), Biological Sciences (top 350), and Electrical and Electronic Engineering (top 450)​. SU also moved into second position in English Language & Literature (top 250) after having finished third in 2022. ​In Accounting & Finance, SU is among the top 330 institutions globally.<br></p><p>“In line with our vision to be Africa's leading research-intensive university, we also want to discern ourselves in higher education globally, so we are pleased that our reputation in Agriculture & Forestry and Theology, Divinity & Religious Studies has been ranked number one.  As the only university in South Africa that offers viticulture and oenology due to our unique wine region, we are especially proud that Agriculture received such recognition," says Prof Hester Klopper, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Strategy, Global and Corporate Affairs.</p><p><strong>Indicators</strong></p><p>The QS subject tables use academic reputation, employer reputation, research citations per paper, H-index and International Research Network (IRN) as indicators to rank universities. The first two of these are based on global surveys of academics and employers that are used to assess an institution's international reputation in each subject. Research citations per paper measures the average number of citations obtained per publication, and is an estimate of the impact and quality of the scientific work done by universities. The H-index assesses the stability of impact and quality of the work published by an institution's academics. The IRN is a measure of a university's efficiency in establishing stable research collaborations in each of the five broad subject areas.</p><p>Over the last few years, SU has been consistently ranked among the best tertiary institutions globally on the <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=9049"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">QS World University Rankings by Subject</strong></a>, the <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=8646"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">Times Higher Education World University Subject Rankings</strong></a>, and the<a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=9329"> <strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">ShanghaiRanking's Global Ranking of Academic Subjects</strong></a>. These rankings all use different methodologies and indicators to determine universities' position on their ranking.<br></p><p>​<br></p>