The University of Johannesburg (UJ) is once again shifting frontiers by introducing more innovative virtual capabilities in real-time. In a first for a South African university, UJ has now introduced digital certification and a virtual qualification verification system that will enable its graduates to access their qualifications digitally.
Says the Director of Central Academic Administration (UJ), Dr Tinus van Zyl: “Not only does this online system offers graduates access to their awarded certification credentials securely and electronically, but it also gives the graduates access to share their qualification credentials for verification purposes with third parties or prospective employers, at no cost to both parties.”
The online system has been introduced because of a need to increase security features related to the certification processes in order to prevent fraud, curb counterfeiting and to avoid fraudulent representation of awarded qualifications.
“The Digital Certificate system gives our alumni access to and put them in control of who can verify their qualifications. Key features incorporated into the new system are designed around international security standards and are compliant with legislation in terms of the protection to personal information.
“Once a third party or a prospective employer request to verify an awarded qualification, the certificate holder must authorise the access. UJ is constantly reviewing and implementing secure technologies to bring our clients the latest, cutting-edge systems and certification security features,” says Dr Van Zyl.
Included in the key features which the new Digital Certificate system offers, is the ordering of lost or damaged certificates; the requesting of academic records or transcript supplements; a secure online payment portal; an optional delivery by courier (nationally or internationally) and the validation of awarded qualifications.
The Registrar of UJ, Professor Kinta Burger, pointed out that UJ’s new Digital Certificate system further protects the University’s certificates from fraud and preserve the reputation of the University and the integrity of qualifications.
Prof Burger concludes: “UJ is committed to applying new technologies either in the form of artificial intelligence, machine learning or automation. This natural evolution brings about accessibility to technology and is only a small step as we prepare for the fourth industrial revolution. We are pleased to offer this service to our alumni and at the same time protect UJ’s qualifications and reputation.”
The introduction of digital certificates follows the launch of several online learning programmes aimed at creating a generation of informed and connected global citizens.