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The Faculty of Health Sciences Office of Student Success is staffed by a dedicated professional team that enables the holistic development, wellbeing and support of the HS student towards their academic success. 

We are committed to ensure students remain at the heart of our services through the values of:

    • Respect – we recognize that each individual must be treated with respect and dignity.
    • Inclusivity – we celebrate the uniqueness of each individual.
    • Support – we commit to offer a safe, non-judgemental space of care for students.
    • Excellence – we continuously look for opportunities to innovate and achieve success.
COVID-19 Quick Reference Guide

Reference Guide Health Sciences students COVID-19

Here is a list of challenges you may be facing since Wits reopened on 20 April. Follow the columns through from the left to the right to identify support that you can access.

Holistic Coping Skills during COVID-19

A psycho-social and academic toolbox to help you navigate this period.

Dealing with procrastination

When working in a less-formal environment it is often difficult to keep your focus and effectively manage your time. Here is a short guide to help you to deal with procrastination

Wits Student Crisis Line 0800 111 331


Academic Advising


Academic Advising and Online Learning during COVID-19


Consult an OSS Academic Advisor to learn and master any of the following skills.


  • Study Skills
    • Effective study involves more than just reading. It includes learning to learn independently using all the resources available to you. Learning to study effectively is like learning a new subject.
  • Academic Reading and Writing Skills
    • Learn to read for a purpose and with understanding in order to develop your academic writing skills. The better you reading is, the better your writing will become.
  • Workload Management Skills
    • Health Sciences degrees are probably not more difficult than any other rigorous degrees, but students often find them challenging because of high work volume per hour and long schools days. You will need efficient and effective study methods which are aligned to the huge volume.
  • Time Management and Planning
    • 'Time' is a precious resource. To achieve success at university you need to be self-disciplined, meet deadlines and develop a balanced student life.
  • Critical Thinking Skills
    • At University, you are expected to learn information and use it to solve problems. This requires you to think critically through applying information learnt in new situations, analyzing information and making judgements that lead to the creation of new knowledge.
  • Maximising In-Class Learning
    • University education is structured in a way that those that fully engage in classroom activities learn more. This calls for deep knowledge of course requirements as spelt out in the course outlines, class attendance as well as full focus and participation in learning activities, and meaningful note taking instead of just copying.
  • Maximising Learning Resources
    • A successful student makes use of all resources at her/his disposal. Be sure to use the following and more:
      • course outlines and all course materials
      • prescribed and recommended textbooks
      • online resources (available through the Library and SAKAI)
      • human resources (lecturers, tutors, OSS Academic Advisors, peers).
  • Preparing for Tests/Exams
    • Preparing for tests/exams is a process, not an event. Learn how to prepare for end of year exams from the beginning of the academic year.

To book a one on one appointment with an Academic Advisor email 




Therapy Services


Mental Wellness during COVID-19

OSS Psychologists provide a confidential, supportive and caring space where you can talk about your concerns and challenges.

  • Individual Counselling

This is a safe supportive session where you can talk about your issues. Counsellors will listen, empathize and help you to help yourself through a process of reflection.


  • Crisis Management

Sometimes a student may experience a traumatic incident such as a robbery, etc.  This could result in the student requiring immediate containment and support due to distress.


  • Debriefing

Following a traumatic event such as a loss of a friend or peer, students may require debriefing. OSS facilitates one on one or group debriefing sessions.


  • Support

Depending on your need, Counsellors can facilitate several support groups for various student cohorts, for example self-esteem, awareness of self, resilience, diversity literacy.


  • Stress Less

Stress can have a negative effect on your wellbeing and university experience. It can make you feel alone, unable to connect with others and affect your academic performance. 

To consult a Counsellor email or 

Advocacy and Prevention


These programmes promote the holistic development of students by facilitating psychosocial learning and life skills development through workshops, training and interactive group processes.


Do you want to support a peer?  OSS can train senior students to mentor junior students. Mentoring is designed to enhance student academic success, cultivate a sense of community and create a positive, learning experience for students. Furthermore, mentoring aims to facilitate student success by

  • assisting students transition to University;
  • guiding students to clarify and prioritize study goals;
  • facilitating peer learning through the creation of learning communities and
  • promoting positive role modelling and interpersonal interactions

Download the Mentoring leaflet - Mentoring


OSS also conducts regular campaigns, radio talks and publishes newsletter articles to enhance students’ mental health & wellness.

Career GATE (Greatness Achieved Through Excellence

The Office of Student Success aims to help our students achieve greatness through excellence!

Preparing the BHSc student for the world of work

The Resilient Health Carer
Important contacts and links

AKESO Helpline - 0861435787

SADAG Helpline - 0800 567 567

Discovery Medical Students Helpline - 0800 323 323

Lifeline - 011 728 1347 / 0861 322 322



First Year Experience

Health and wellbeing

Development and Leadership Unit

Safety on campus


How can I help the Office of Student Success


#MakeaDifference Programme

“A kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal” Steve Maraboli

Students’ needs at Wits University are diverse. Like all tertiary institutions, the University endeavours to ensure that the diverse needs of students are met so that they can attain academic success.  


There are some students that are impacted by their financial and socioeconomic circumstances which results in their basic needs not being met including food insecurity.  The OSS is committed to improve the lives of these marginalized and vulnerable students through the #MakeaDifference programme.


The #MakeaDifference programme aims to:

In the short term:

  • Create awareness about FHS students’ basic needs;
  • Provide “care kits” to all FHS students who experience food insecurity and hardship.

In the medium term:

  • Recruit volunteers, alumni and ‘friends’ to source donations and funds in order to maintain and sustain the #MakeaDifference Programme;
  • Promote the mental wellbeing of these FHS students through promotional activities.

In the long term:

  • Initiate, develop and maintain a FHS food garden that grows vegetables, fruits and fresh organic produce for FHS students that are in need;
  • Align this programme to the vision of the WCCO on Main Campus.

During this difficult and challenging time of the COVID-19 pandemic, the OSS anticipates that there will be a significant increase of students who will require assistance and support. The OSS would therefore like to appeal to everyone to donate either food, toiletries or financially support this programme.

Here is a list of possible items to be donated:


Food items

Sanitary Pads


Roll on


Bath soap


Body Lotion


Washing powder

Tea bags


Peanut butter


Canned Tuna


Canned Sardines


Canned Baked beans


Canned Pilchards


Bully Beef



Body Soap



Mealie meal

Toilet Paper




Hand Sanitizer


Soap Powder (Small & Medium size)

Powdered Milk


Cooking Oil


As soon as the lockdown ends and the OSS reopens, we urge you to use the following methods of donation, namely:

  • Food items, toiletries or stationery can be dropped off in the donation box at Student Liaison Hub (Medical school 4th floor) or at the OSS Reception in the PVT Building 1st
  • Schools and Departments can provide monetary support to the OSS MYSCHOOL project (001-408-8411101…..MYSCHOOL) so that stocks can be bought and replenished. 
  • Schools and Departments can provide donations with IR’s.

For further information please email 

The OSS wishes to extend immense gratitude to student councils, departments, staff and students who have donated to this programme over the years. Thank you for giving with an open heart.  The generous donations have made a huge difference.

The #MakeaDifference Programme at the OSS wants to ensure all students reach their fullest potential, irrespective of their financial standing or backgrounds.

Together we can make a difference… join us as we change lives… Give Well.

Where are we?


Office of Student Success (OSS)

Phillip V Tobias Health Sciences Building 1st Floor
29 Princess of Wales Terrace (cnr York rd) - just down the road from the main Faculty of Health Sciences building
011 717 2565


OSS Satellite Office

Student Liaison Hub
4th Level (next to the Entrance to the main Faculty of Health Sciences building)
7 York Road, Parktown
011 717 2008