General glossary of terms

academic literacy: the minimum level of conversational, reading and writing skills in English or Afrikaans needed to participate successfully in programme of the University of Pretoria

academic year: the duration of the academic year which is determined by the University Council

admission regulation: a regulation compiled by the dean concerning the admission of students to a specific study programme, which includes a provision regarding the selection process

anti-semester modules: modules normally presented in the first semester, which can be repeated in the second semester to provide students with another opportunity to attempt passing the modules in question in the same year. (Please note: Only certain departments present modules on an anti-semester basis.)

block: a module/modules presented as a block in a specified period of time during the academic year

block mark: a mark calculated from the continuous evaluation opportunities during the course of the presentation of the relevant block

block examination: examination on the total content of a block. This is scheduled at the end of a block/semester.

final block mark: calculated from the block examination mark and the block mark (continuous evaluation) in a 50:50 or 60:40 ratio

capita selecta: a specific component or combination of components of an existing module

certificate of satisfactory preparation: also implies satisfactory attendance of practical classes and clinical work

church partner: a church with which the University has concluded a formal agreement regarding the training of candidates and the provision of academic personnel

church-specific: that portion of a programme or theological instruction which takes place in terms of the regulations in the Yearbook, but which deals with the specific perspective, practice or instruction requirements of a church or denominational partner

colloquium doctum: an interview which the dean, the head of department concerned and the supervisor (if required) may have with a candidate to determine his or her study background and level of scientific knowledge or competence as scholar and researcher

core module: a compulsory module which is essential to achieving the outcomes for a particular programme

credit (or credit value): a value unit linked to particular learning activities. In the case of modules, the value is related to the complexity (including the year level at which the module is taken) and the total number of learning hours needed to complete the module successfully. Credit values are also attached to the completion of qualifications: to complete a three-year bachelor’s degree, students must normally be awarded a minimum of 360 credits (on average, 120 credits at each of the three year levels, with a minimum of 72 credits at the third-year level). It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that the diploma/degree programme complies with the total number of credits required to complete the diploma/degree.

curriculum: a series of modules which form a study programme, grouped together over a specified period of time and in a certain sequence according to the regulations.

denominational training: supplementary theological training which is arranged by the church partner itself, and which is not subject to the faculty regulations

discipline: demarcated field of study

elective module: a module from a group of modules which can be selected on an elective basis with the proviso that enough credits are obtained at the specific year level, as required by the relevant qualification

examination mark: the mark awarded to a student in a module on the basis of an examination in a paper/papers, including practical and clinical examinations, where applicable. If necessary, the examination mark is finalised after ancillary examinations have been completed.

extended programme: a study programme for a degree or diploma completed over a period longer than the minimum duration for that particular degree or diploma according to regulation

final mark: a mark calculated on the basis of the semester mark/year mark and the examination mark awarded to a student in a module, using a formula which is determined from time to time by means of regulations for every module, with the proviso that should no semester/year mark be required in a module, the examination mark serves as the final mark.

fundamental module: a module which serves as the academic basis or foundation of the core learning activities for a particular programme

general denominational: theological training which is not denominational specific

grade point average based on module credits (GPA): an average mark that is calculated by multiplying the final mark achieved in a module with the credit value of that module and then dividing the sum of these values by the total of the credit values of all the modules for which a student was enrolled. The result of these calculations is a weighted average based on module credits.

GS: a combined final mark (the average of the semester/year mark and the examination mark) of between 40% and 49% must be obtained, in order for a student to be admitted to the relevant module

learning hours (notional hours): the estimated number of hours students should spend to master the learning content of a particular module or programme. The total number of learning hours for a module consists of the time needed for lectures, tutorials and practicals (contact hours), as well as for self-study, examination preparation and any other activity required by the study programme. (notional hours = credits (for a module) x10)

learning outcome: the end product of a specified learning process, ie the learning result (specific skills) that one intends to achieve at the end of the learning process

level (or year level): the academic level (year) of a module as contained in the module code, which gives an indication of the complexity of the module. A programme that culminates in a national first degree qualification normally consists of first-, second- and third-year level modules.

module: an independent, defined learning unit, designed to result in a specific set of learning outcomes, and which is a component of a programme

module code: consists of an equal number of letters and digits, which indicate the name of the module, the year of study and the level of the module

module/semester/year (performance) mark: the mark awarded to a student on the basis of tests, classwork, practical work or any other work which was completed in a module, including continuous evaluation and as prescribed by regulations

NBT: the National Benchmark Tests (NBTs) were commissioned by Higher Education South Africa (HESA) to assess academic readiness of first-year university students as a supplement to secondary school reports on learning achieved in content-specific courses - Academic Literacy, Quantitative Literacy and Mathematics. Please go to for more information.

NQF: National Qualifications Framework. This is a national frame-work in which all SAQA-registered qualifications are listed, arranged on different levels in accordance with the complexity of the qualification.

option: a specific focus area within an existing study programme

programme: a comprehensively planned, structured and coherent set of teaching and learning units (modules) which culminate in a student being awarded a particular qualification (certificate, diploma or degree)

programme manager: the person responsible for the overhead management, organisation and composition of a particular programme

promotion: when a student is exempted from the final examination in certain modules, provided that a student's semester or year mark for the module exceeds a certain predetermined minimum percentage (eg 75%)

qualification: a diploma or a degree which is obtained after attaining the learning outcomes as specified in a coherent learning programme, expressed as an accumulation of credits at specific levels

registration: the process candidates need to follow to become registered students in accordance with the general requirements and regulations of the University

SAQA: South African Qualifications Authority. This body has been established by law and has as its purpose the registration of qualifications, programmes and unit standards, in order to ensure that specific national and international criteria are achieved.

semester module: a module that extends over one semester (14 weeks)

specialist module: major module (speciality) in a specific programme

subject: a demarcated field of study of which one module or more may be chosen for a degree

syllabus: summary of the contents of a module

tentamen: an oral discussion comprising of elements of teaching and evaluation

year module: a module that extends over one year (two semesters; 28 weeks)

The information published here is subject to change and may be amended after the publication of this information. The General Regulations (G Regulations) apply to all faculties of the University of Pretoria. It is expected of students to familiarise themselves well with these regulations as well as with the information contained in the General Rules section. Ignorance concerning these regulations and rules will not be accepted as an excuse for any transgression.

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