Prof Bettine van Vuuren
Prof Bettine van Vuuren took up office as UJ’s Registrar on 1 April 2023. Prior to this position, she was the Senior Director: Strategic Initiatives & Administration, and the HoD of the Department of Zoology (Faculty of Science). She also remains a Professor in the Department of Zoology, and an NRF rated academic.
The Registrar’s portfolio consists of the following divisions:
- Central Academic Administration
- Occupational Health Practice
- Corporate Governance
- University Secretariat
- Primary Healthcare Service
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Central Academic Administration (CAA)
The term academic administration refers to the management and governance of the academic life cycle of the student, from application to graduation. Central Academic Administration (CAA) operates to enable the University’s fitness for purpose and adequate support of its primary academic strategic objectives. Central Academic Administration governance is divided into the following units: Faculty Coordination (including Academic Structure, Registration Logistics, Alumni, Certification and Graduations), HEMIS Coordinator, Student Enrolment Centre (including Student Call Centre and Student Marketing), Assessment, and Timetabling.
Student Enrolment Centre
The Student Enrolment Centre (SEC) is responsible for student marketing, the dissemination of academic programme information, upkeep of student/applicant biographical data, providing assistance with the application processes for all application types, and involved in the selection of future undergraduate students. A comprehensive one-stop service is also provided by the Contact Centre in the form of telephone enquiry support, real-time chats on the website and email enquiries to the University. SEC offices are available on all the UJ campuses.
UJ is at the forefront of online registration, which includes electronic selections and automated email responses, with 99% of the annual 50 000 students registering online. Although manual registrations are also accepted.
The main objective of this unit is to support effective teaching and learning by managing, improving and optimising timetables via effective and streamlined processes with good governance. With the large number of UJ students, timetabling remains a complex challenge; however, it is simplified by means of scheduling software that optimises lecturing and final assessment (exam) timetables. The same software is used for client self-service ad hoc venue bookings (e.g. for booking semester test venues). Interface software programs are used to link the Scheduling System with the Student and Space Systems of the University.
A dual governance system exists, as each faculty has a Head of Faculty Administration reporting to the relevant Executive Dean, but the Registrar is ultimately accountable for the quality of academic administration. The Faculty Coordination Office promotes good corporate governance and ensures effective coordination of academic administration activities between operational departments, faculties and the college.
The Assessment Department is responsible for the central coordination of all assessment related activities at the University. All the invigilation requirements are coordinated centrally, and assessment papers are submitted through a secure online portal and centrally printed and stored for assessments.
Graduation and Certification
The Department is responsible for the graduation logistics of on average 12 000 to 13 000 UJ graduates annually. UJ’s advanced security certificates system not only protects the University’s certificates from fraud, but also preserves the reputation of the institution and the integrity of qualifications. Digital certificates issued by the University provide the functionality of qualification verifications (alumni securely authorise access to their certification documents electronically to third parties or prospective employers, free of charge) or the ordering or replacement of certificates (courier to anywhere in the world).
The primary focus of the Alumni Office is to facilitate and maintain effective contact with its worldwide community of alumni, with the aim of keeping them informed of and engaged in University activities. The involvement of alumni is crucial to the sustainability and growth of the University and provides important ties between the past and the present. The Alumni network therefore helps to serve alumni needs and encourage their involvement and support in preserving the brand and stature of the University.
The annual external student data audit is submitted to DHET via the Registrar’s Office.
The University Secretariat provides professional secretarial support to Council and Council committees, Senate and identified Senate committees, MEC and MEC sub-committees, joint committees of the Council and Senate, and the Council and the MEC.
The Corporate Governance (CG) Division functions within the Registrar’s Portfolio. The core functions are driven in alignment with the Institutional Statute of the University of Johannesburg as well as relevant institutional policies. The Division comprises of three units, namely, Governance, Qualifications Verifications and Records Management.