vacant posts

Ian Sanders ian at
Mon Sep 27 15:05:28 PDT 1999

                 Posts in the Computer Science Department
         University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

                      Lecturer / Senior Lecturer
                            Senior Tutor
                       Tutor / Junior Lecturer

The Computer Science Department at the University of the Witwatersrand is
one of Africa's leading computer science departments.  We are committed to
educating graduates and producing research to meet South Africa's
challenging needs in information technology.

South Africa is in the process of political change.  The government is
re-evaluating tertiary education, and initial reports indicate tertiary
education is regarded as a high priority.  With a changing South Africa the
department sees a need to look ahead.  We are looking for staff who can
help us develop the research aspect of our department.  In exchange we
offer a vibrant environment and an opportunity to contribute to a country
at an important stage of its development.

We now have 10 academic staff members, and we wish to appoint up to 3 new
staff members, in order to expand our research and teaching roles.  We
would like new appointees at senior level to add strength of leadership to
existing research areas, but applicants from all areas of computer science
are welcomed and this could provide an opportunity for a motivated
researcher to develop their own research interests.

Applicants could be appointed at any one of the levels described below.
Which and how many posts are filled will depend on the applicants and the
seniority at which they are appointed.  Please indicate which position/s
you would like to be considered for when applying.

We are committed to equal opportunities, and for all posts, we
encourage black, women and disabled applicants.

Senior Lecturer/Lecturer:
  These are tenure-track positions and successful applicants will be
expected to teach at undergraduate and postgraduate levels, undertake
research and perform departmental administration.  Applicants for the
senior lectureship should hold a PhD in computer science, have completed
some post-doctoral research and have teaching experience.  Applicants for
the lectureship should hold a PhD in computer science (or be able to
provide objective evidence that they will complete their PhD by the time
they take up the post).  Applicants should also be able to demonstrate
ability to teach a range of computer science courses.  A lectureship is a
suitable entry-level position for a new PhD.

Senior Tutor:
  This is a tenure track position, and a successful applicant will be
expected to teach undergraduate courses, and play an important role in
academic and curriculum development. The successful applicant should
have an honours degree in computer science. A higher degree and/or a
teaching qualification and/or experience will be a recommendation. The
successful applicant will be encouraged to undertake research in
computer science or computer science education.

Tutor/Junior Lecturer:
  This is an affirmative action/development position, and we will favour
applicants from under-represented groups in the field. The successful
applicant will have an honours degree in computer science. This person
will be expected to participate in the teaching of the department, and
an important objective of the post is to give a person with potential
the opportunity to pursue a higher degree and gain teaching and
research experience. This is a three-year contract post.

For senior lecturer or lecturer posts, we would prefer someone who will
strengthen one of our current research interests (see below), but the
primary criteria will be the quality and potential of the applicant.  The
tutor/junior lecturer must be prepared to pursue their higher degree in one
of the research areas of the department.

Please direct any inquiries about any aspects of these posts, or
the department, to

Conrad Mueller --- conrad at

Further information about the department can be found at



The University of the Witwatersrand is one of the top universities in South
Africa.  It prides itself on its standards and is internationally
recognized.  The University is located in Johannesburg, the biggest city in
Southern Africa, and is thus strategically positioned in the industrial
heartland of South Africa.  This makes it an exciting and stimulating
situation in which to work.

The Department of Computer Science is in the Mathematical Sciences subject
area.  We are also presently involved in building an umbrella body with the
other IT departments at Wits -- the Department of Electrical Engineering
and the Department of Information Systems.  The Department has a governing
committee consisting of three members of the Department which reports
directly to the Dean of the Science Faculty.  There are 10 academic posts
in the department, with three technical support officers, an administrator
and a secretary.  The department is well equipped with both PC and Mac labs
for undergraduates which are networked to the internet and a UNIX server,
and an SGI lab for postgraduate students.

We see teaching as an important function of the department and all academic
members of staff are expected to be able to teach a range of mainstream
computer science topics.  The department has a strong undergraduate
programme, teaching only courses directed at students majoring in computer
science.  The undergraduate curriculum is based on the ACM/IEEE
guidelines for computer science, and regularly undergoes re-evaluation.
Many of our students have gone on to become respected members of the
academic and business communities worldwide.  The department teaches: a
first year course of 200 students, a second year course of 80 students, a
third year course of 70 students, an honours course of 15-25 students, and
3 to 5 higher degree students start each year.  Undergraduate students
register for a Bachelor of Science Degree, which has a flexible course

The department has always been very conscious of its role in South African
society.  A challenge the department is faced with is teaching students
with widely differing school qualifications, which includes students from
deprived educational backgrounds; empathy for these students is important.
We are very proud of our achievements in developing what we believe is an
outstanding undergraduate and honours degree course.  The emphasis has been
on trying to address the racial imbalances resulting from the historical
problems in our society and at the same time maintaining excellence.  The
department has been innovative in this aspect; we consider ourselves to be
leaders in the country in this regard and have received international

As one of the leading universities in South Africa we feel that we are in
an ideal position to develop our research.  In addition, our location in
the industrial heartland provides largely untapped opportunities to develop
valuable research partnerships with industry and commerce.  The Department
would benefit greatly from such partnership: experience in setting up joint
research projects will be one of the criteria used in selecting the
candidates.  We are currently initiating programmes to coordinate joint
research and to support higher degree students.  Recently we have put
increased effort into developing our postgraduate programme.

We have a thriving research programme focused on aspects of dependable
computing.  Staff members are also involved in a number of other areas of
research -- machine learning, computational geometry, robotics, computer
science education, formal methods, verification, concurrency, process
algebras, image processing, pattern recognition, etc.

Please direct any informal inquiries to Conrad Mueller, conrad at
who is the current chair of the governing committee.

More information about the department can be found at and more information about the University can be
found at

Ian Sanders                       Telephone:  (2711) 716-3269
Department of Computer Science    Fax:        (2711) 339-3513
University of the Witwatersrand                      403-9317
Private Bag 3                     ian at

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