Biz-Community (Cape Town)

11 January 2013

South Africa: TUT Students Access Academic, Financial Information Via Mobile Devices

Following a successful pilot project in December 2012, students at the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) will be able to access academic and financial information on their mobile devices through ITS Mobiles' new app. It will be the first institution to go live on the application in South Africa.

The app provides students with access to their university data from a variety of mobile platforms, including tablets, smartphones and other cellphones. It gives 24/7 on demand access to available academic, financial and residential information to students, including exam timetable information, exam results, registration information, admission status, financial statements and financial aid information.

"The application was thoroughly tested by a team of seven TUT staff members from the enrolment and residence department, assessment management department, student debtors department and financial aid department who will be making use of the system extensively," says Jeanette Moloya from TUT. "These divisions are all happy that the system is now ready to go live to the wider student community."

Efficient and reliable

"Most students have access to these technologies and ITS Mobile makes use of mediums of communication that will appeal to students. It is also much faster than the postal system, making it an efficient and reliable way for students to access their information. We are looking forward to a successful university wide launch and experiencing the benefits of the application as time goes on."

"ITS has partnered with two well-known companies with specific expertise in the area of mobile applications in order to bring this offering to market quickly," says ITS's MD, Derick Jordaan. CampusEAI Consortium has developed the ITS Mobile apps that smartphone and tablet users, including Android, Apple and Blackberry users, will be able to download in order to access their student data remotely. CampusEAI has developed similar applications for the tertiary sector internationally. Listed company FoneWorx is supplying the mobi technology enabling non-smartphone users access to their student data.

Meeting corporate strategic objectives

This fits well with TUT's BYOD (Bring-Your-Own-Device) strategy, whereby both students and staff are encouraged to use their own mobile devices to conduct research, online learning, access information and browse internet through using the university's ICT infrastructure such as wi-fi access across the university's network and through broadband access provided by the university. This will significantly contribute to its success in meeting its corporate strategic objectives.

"We are very excited to be part of this project. It aims to make life easier for all our students. With this technological application we hope to reduce and finally eliminate the long queues for enquiries at the university," concludes deputy vice chancellor Isaac Tlhabadira.

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