A Coffee with Chantal Adams



“Chantal works as a Student Counsellor for UNISA in South Africa.”


Hello Chantal, how do you like your coffee?

Warm with lots of milk.

In your role as a Student Counsellor at UNISA, is your main focus on distance learners or on students on campus?

Unisa is an open and distance learning University therefore all of our students are in actual fact distance learners. Students who register with Unisa reside both in South Africa and outside of South Africa. We do not offer full-time lectures and our students have the power to choose how many modules they wish to register for each year which ultimately determines the number of years they will spend completing a formal qualification. Our main campus is situated in Pretoria and we have a number of regional campuses spread across the region. I work with Counselling and Career Development, Western Cape Campus situated in Cape Town, South Africa. For more information related to Unisa visit www.unisa.ac.za

As a distance learning University we aim to provide a professional counselling service to students across the globe using various counselling interventions (face-to-face, telephone, e-counselling and video conference with the students specifically from the George campus; make available online resources to assist students to achieve academic success www.unisa.ac.za/counselling).

What are the main issues they face?

Students present a host of central concerns. Common topics include needing assistance to achieve academic success, how to overcome or manage personal issues impeding their academic development, how to make an informed career decision, how to choose between various qualifications.

I see that you deliver bi-weekly workshops for your distance learners. What kinds of topics do you cover?

Study skills and examination preparation

My wellness and ODL challenges

Memory, concentration and note making

Time management and motivation

Overcoming exam anxiety

Exam review reflection



Career choices reviewed

Our role is to assist students to achieve academic success. The only problem we encounter is student attendance or should I rather say the lack of attendance for these workshops.