Remember: academic exclusion is not the end of the world. It could be start of something different.
Reasons for an unsuccessful appeal:
It may be that your appeal against exclusion is not successful; in other words, the Readmission Appeals Committee, after considering your circumstances and motivations, nonetheless feels that a return to UCT is not in your best interests. There are various different reasons why they might make this decision, but all are based on careful consideration of whether or not you are likely to succeed in your studies if re-admitted.
- You might not have given the committee enough evidence to show that you have overcome the problems (medical, psychological or circumstancial) which have affected your success, and they may be concerned that the unsolved issues will once more cause you to fail your courses if you return to study.
- You may have appealed to the Humanities Faculty as a second or even third choice, and may not have shown enough commitment to and interest in a Humanities course of study. In our experience, students who have put down Humanities as a last choice are often still committed to their original faculty, and will try to do courses in Humanities which will allow them to return to that faculty; since they have failed those courses in the past, they will very often continue to fail them.
- Even if you show strong Humanities interest and have sorted out your problematical circumstances, you may have been registered at UCT for long enough that you have only a year or two of possible registration remaining, and still need to do a large number of courses in that limited time. If you have a record which is unsuccessful enough to lead to exclusion, it is not likely that you will be able to suddenly reverse the trend to succeed at a very heavy course load under a lot of pressure. In these circumstances, the committee will often recommend that you spend a year at another university, building up credits which we can transfer to your UCT degree, so that you can return to finish a UCT degree in a future year under much less pressurised circumstances.
Exclusion after a semester of probation:
Even if you are successful in your appeal, you will only be permitted to register for one semester, and with a maximum load of three courses. If you do not pass all of these courses, you will not meet the terms of your probation, and may thus be excluded again at the end of the semester. If this happens, the only way you can return in future is to show academic rehabilitation - see below.
How to return after an unsuccessful appeal:
If your appeal is unsuccessful or, you do not appeal at all, your UCT record will become inactive, and you will not be able to return to the university in the year immediately after your exclusion. You cannot ask another faculty at UCT to accept you; exclusion is from the whole university, not just from one course or faculty.
The earliest you could return is the second year after your exclusion. Please be aware, though, that there are very specific rules and procedures for this kind of return:
1 Once you have been excluded and your appeal has been unsuccessful, you cannot return to UCT unless you formally apply:
- You must fill in the standard UCT application form for a place at UCT, either the online or a hard copy application, by the application deadline (usually the end of July) in the year before you wish to register.
- If you were excluded at the end of 2022, you must apply formally before the end of July 2023 for a place in 2024.
- We cannot decide whether to offer you a place unless your UCT record has been activated, and the formal application is the only way to do that.
2 Once you have applied, the Faculty will consider your request for a place:
- You will need to demonstrate that you have sorted out whatever the problems were which led to your lack of success in your previous studies.
3 In a very few cases, it is possible to prove that you have overcome your problems:
- This most often applies to medical or serious psychological issues, where you can submit medical reports which demonstrate your recovery.
- This is not usually a good basis for re-admission, however, and in most cases we will also expect to see evidence of academic rehabilitation (see below).
4 In most cases, the Faculty will require evidence of academic rehabilitation. This means evidence of successful study at another university / degree-offering institution:
- It is possible to be given a place at another institution.
- You will need to study for a minimum of one semester, but preferably a full year, on a full course load, and will need to pass all of your subjects. We look for marks in the 60s rather than marginal passes in the 50s; effectively, we need to see that you are back on track and able to succeed.
- If you apply on this basis, you need to submit your transcripts from another institution as part of your application. (If the results are not yet available owing to the timing of exams, make sure you submit your application to UCT by the end July deadline, and we will hold your application until you can send us the results).
- All we are looking for is evidence that you have overcome the problems which prevented your success when you were first registered at UCT, and a successful record elsewhere is very good evidence of that.
Transferring credits from academic rehabilitation:
It is important that you choose the correct subjects at your other institution, as the credits you earn there can then be transferred to your UCT degree, and you will not waste time or money in studying elsewhere.
- For a general BA or BSocSc, the maximum number of credits we will transfer from another institution is 8 semester courses out of the 20 which make up the degree. For rules governing the transfer of credits for the BMus, BA Fine Art or BSocial Work, please see the Humanities handbook.
- We will under no circumstances transfer the final-year credits needed for a major subject or programme specialisation.
- Credits will only usually be given in subjects which are offered through the faculty of Humanities at UCT. We do not, for example, transfer credits in Communications.
- When choosing your courses at another institution, you will need to consult the Head of Department of that subject at UCT. You can do this in person or by email (you can look up their email addresses on the UCT website). You need to show the HoD a brief description of the course(s) you wish to take elsewhere, and ask whether the subject material is similar to a course at UCT. It will help if you have already looked through the UCT handbook, and have chosen courses at your other institution which do seem to be equivalent.
- Remember that UCT courses tend to be a bit larger than those at other institutions, and you will often need more than one external course to make a single UCT credit.
- See information on transferring courses to assist you to choose your courses at your external institution.