n South African Journal of Higher Education - Establishing a space of dialogue and possibilities : student experience and meaning at the University of the Witwatersrand

Volume 22, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



The article explores student responses to institutional changes to accommodate increasingly diverse students into a cohesive community. It deals with student perceptions of current campus practices, social interaction, their interpretations of these, and how these relate to their experiences. It argues that, while the university has excelled in implementing strategies to improve student satisfaction, and while many students have responded positively to these, a sense of discontent persists for a large sector. This discontent has less to do with the degree of institutional change than with the different ways in which students experience these changes and the meanings they attach to them. It suggests that changes in campus life go beyond policies and structural changes to include mediation strategies that facilitate negotiation of shared spaces and meanings about campus experiences.

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