#UselessUnisa trends as students struggle to cope

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The University of South Africa (Unisa) has once again found itself in the spotlight as thousands of students band behind the #UselessUnisa hashtag to decry problems affecting them at the school.

At the time of writing, on Twitter alone, the hashtag is nearing five thousand tweets with more joining in on the conversation with each refresh.

Looking over many of these tweets and there are recurring topics: a lack of access to data, notebooks, textbooks and allowances.

These problems have reached fever pitch as many students have been pressured to submit important first semester assignments tomorrow on 12th May. As we reported on back in April this date was given as an expansion to Unisa students following problems with registrations for the semester.

For certain modules not submitting the first assignment will result in an automatic failure, even if the assignment does not contribute to the final grade for that module. From what we’ve been able to gather the point of this harsh system is to make sure that students don’t sign up for modules they don’t intended to partake in by failing them early in the semester.

Another issue that this trend highlights is Unisa’s continued communications problems. A breakdown in communication has plagued the university for years with students left with no reply from Unisa representatives indefinitely as they struggle with their problems.

Just recently the new principal and vice chancellor of Unisa promised that this would be fixed with a 48 hour turnaround time for student queries. A nice sentiment but when we interviewed the previous principal and vice chancellor in 2020 these same problems remained and were also promised to be improved.

Below you can find a selection of tweets using the #UselessUnisa hashtag from students and supporters.

Clinton Matos

Clinton Matos

Clinton has been a programmer, engineering student, project manager, asset controller and even a farrier. Now he handles the maker side of htxt.africa.