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Virtual Campus
University of Pretoria launches Virtual Campus
12 June 2018

Discover, access and explore the University of Pretoria from anywhere in the world. Prospective students who are interested in the University of Pretoria’s (UP) academic offerings can now take a virtual tour of the campuses from the comfort of their homes. Go to www.virtualcampus.up.ac.za to visit the site.

The University has launched an exciting Virtual Campus platform on its website, whereby prospective students, their parents, and other members of the public can experience its facilities and campus life through a combination of 360-degree panoramas and videos and course-related, relevant information.

According to Prof Stephanie Burton, Vice-Principal of Research and Postgraduate Education, the aim of the Virtual Campus is to showcase the learning, teaching and research facilities of the University and to make the campus more accessible to a wider and more diverse group of prospective students, at all levels and from different communities across the country and internationally.

The Virtual Campus is a media-rich mini-site that provides information to all students, including postgraduate and international students, as well as other members of the community who wish to know more about the University in terms of academic activities, research opportunities and collaborations.

It provides valuable information to prospective students about UP’s additional support offerings that provide students with the best possible foundation to make a success of their lives. This includes support programmes to help students graduate on time; free career guidance, work readiness and entrepreneurship training; additional online resources and a range of community engagement programmes to enrich students’ learning experiences and to encourage social responsibility.

Prof Burton said the Virtual Campus offering is one of the most comprehensive among South African universities, and it is in line with international trends. Research was conducted on local and international universities in order to produce the most suitable model for the University. The platform allows prospective students to tailor and personalise the information they require after they log into the platform.

The platform has video messages from the deans of all nine faculties, information on degrees on offer, entrance requirements, as well as videos of residences and a panoramic tour of the campuses. For example, if a prospective student shows an interest in the Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology (EBIT), accommodation options on the Hatfield Campus will also appear.

Furthermore, the University’s world-class sports facilities are showcased.

Prof Burton said: ‘This platform will allow people to access and experience the University of Pretoria with the click of a button from anywhere, at any time, affording them the opportunity to discover a world of academic excellence; and to explore new and diverse career path opportunities.’ The platform will provide prospective students with a holistic experience and on-demand information.

There will also be a text-only content version option for those students who have data and other accessibility constraints.

Prof Norman Duncan, Vice-Principal:  Academic, said that the Virtual Campus will augment, supplement and complement the University’s extensive student recruitment initiatives, which include:

  • recruitment teams visiting schools to promote the University;
  • the organisation of career exhibitions;
  • the organisation of open days on the different campuses; 
  • the award-winning JuniorTukkie app, which supports learners from grades 9 to 12, prospective and current students, parents and staff. The app is available on Apple and Android mobile phones and tablets and provides a platform for learners to read inspiring stories and receive important study information, view photographs and videos as well as read articles that will equip them to make good study choices; and
  • the Junior Tukkie Club, which provides school learners with advice on their subject choices, as well as assists Grade 12 learners with their applications for admission to study at UP; and provides information on study and career options.

Phase Two of the Virtual Campus will feature information on postgraduate studies and the Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS), in Illovo, Johannesburg, as well as additional media such as webinars and more videos.

Prof Duncan stressed that the ‘platform will be adapted and expanded as we enter different phases. It is a work-in-progress initiative.’

 

- Author Department of University Relations
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