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19 March 2019 | Story Thabo Kessah | Photo Thabo Kessah
Thokozile Thulo
Thokozile Thulo says the UFS has changed its focus in supporting students with disabilities.

The Centre for Universal Access and Disability Support (CUADS) has recently opened a permanent office on the Qwaqwa Campus The centre aims to ensure that the University of the Free State increasingly becomes a universally accessible higher-education institution which embraces students with various disabilities.

Thokozile Thulo, CUADS Assistant Officer at Qwaqwa said: “Our focus has changed from ‘special’ accommodation for individuals to the creation of a learning environment that is welcoming and empowering to all students. Integrated learning and education methodologies and processes are being researched and developed to create more awareness among lecturing staff. This incorporates universal design, faculty instruction and curricula.” 

The CUADS office assists students to gain access to study courses, learning materials, various buildings and residences, computer facilities and specialised exams and tests. For visually-impaired students, study material and textbooks in Braille, audio, e-text or enlarged format are provided. 

The office also supports students with various psychosocial and chronic conditions such as epilepsy and panic disorder, as well as learning difficulties such as dyslexia and hyperactivity. “In addition, we support students with special arrangements such as extra time for tests and exams,” said Thokozile.



News Archive

Dr Henry Jordaan’s research to establish benchmarks for sustainable freshwater use in agri-food industries
2014-08-22

 

 Photo: en.wikipedia.org

Dr Henry Jordaan, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Agricultural Economics, is working on a multi-disciplinary research project for the Water Research Commission. The project assesses the water footprints of selected agri-food products that are derived from field and forage crops produced under irrigation in South Africa. These foods include animal products, such as meat and dairy, and crop products such as bread and maize meal.

“The water footprint of a food product is the total volume of freshwater that is used to produce the product, measured from the farm to the actual consumption of the food product. Thus, the water footprint is a good indicator of the impact that the consumption of a product has on our scarce freshwater resource. The agri-food sector is a major user of freshwater in South Africa with a relatively large water footprint,” says Dr Jordaan.

However, the agri-food sector also has an important role in economic development in South Africa. It generates income and employment opportunities along the value chains of the food products.

The challenge is to maximise the economic and social benefits from using freshwater in an environment where freshwater gets increasingly scarce.

Through his research, Dr Jordaan aims to establish benchmarks for sustainable freshwater use in selected agri-food industries – from an environmental, economic and social perspective. These benchmarks will inform water users on the acceptable volumes of freshwater to use to produce food products. It will also inform users of the economic and social benefits that they are being expected to generate through their actions so that their water use behaviour could be considered sustainable.


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