Academic Development


Academic development of students is a new focus of the Department for Education Innovation. It begins with the first contact that the student has at UP and ends with graduation. The Deputy Director: Academic Development has oversight on the support provided to students who have been identified through the STARS as requiring assistance to succeed in the first year of study at UP. 

Academic development is the joint responsibility of the student and the academic. The process is facilitated through the office of the Deputy Director: Academic Development by working with the Department of Student Affairs and the Chairs of the Teaching and Learning Committees in the respective faculties. The focus is on the first-year experience of students, including academic orientation. Each faculty has a Faculty Student Advisor to provide support to the students who need it. They run study skills and time-management workshops in groups and are also available for individual sessions with students to address their perceived problems. With the lecturers’ help, they can identify students who are performing poorly to invite them to talk through and address their challenges.  

Research into student development, retention and success is used to provide students with an optimal environment to succeed. Both well-tested and innovative strategies are applied to the academic development of students. 

Oversight of support that is provided by external funders such as the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation as well as the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program falls within this portfolio.

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Support to the academic staff is provided by the Education Consultants who are allocated to each faculty. Newly appointed academic staff attend an Induction Programme that is conducted twice a year.  All academic staff members are invited to update their skills in assessment through workshops provided at various times in the year.  

Further support appears under the Education Consultants’ section.


Prof Ana Naidoo
Deputy Director: Academic Development
[email protected]
+27 (0)12 420 3323

  Palesa Ngwenya
Senior Management Assistant
[email protected]
+27 (0)12 420 2080

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