Professor PJ Schwikkard took up her position as Dean of Law on 1 January 2009. An accomplished and widely published scholar, PJ has substantial experience in both academia and the legal profession. She completed her BA degree at Wits University before embarking on an LLB, graduating summa cum laude.
She was admitted as an Attorney of the Supreme Court of South Africa in 1990 and went on to complete her LLM (cum laude) at the University of Natal. In 1999 she completed her LLD at the University of Stellenbosch.
Over the past 20 years PJ has taught courses in gender and the law, criminal law, criminal procedure, evidence, youth justice, conflict resolution, civil procedure, legal interpretation, legal skills and special contracts, and has published widely in the fields of criminal procedure and evidence.
She began teaching in 1987 as a contract lecturer at the University of Natal's School of Law, later rising to senior lecturer. When she left this university in 1998 it was to take up a professorship at Rhodes University's Faculty of Law.
In 2001 she joined UCT's Faculty of Law in the Department of Criminal Justice and was appointed head of department in 2006 before taking on the dual role of deputy dean a year later.
Professor Schwikkard is one of seven legal professionals to have been appointed to the south African Law Reform Commission.