How To Check If Your College Is Registered and Accredited In South Africa

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When pursuing a tertiary education, it is important that your college is accredited. Here is how you can check if your college is registered and accredited.

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Beware of Bogus Colleges!

There are more than 400 private colleges in South Africa that are registered and accredited with the government and give a good education and a worthwhile qualification at the end.

But you do have to watch out because every year some fraudsters will start up a bogus college and not register, or lie and say they are registered when they are not. Before you pay money you need to make 100% sure that your college is the real deal!

How To Check If A College Is Registered In South Africa?

All public TVET colleges are registered with the Department of Higher Education and Training. There are also over 300 other, private, colleges that are registered and accredited to deliver education and award qualifications. 

They serve an important role because they often deliver the type of education that public colleges don't. Courses like sound engineering, fashion, sports and fitness, movie making and lots of other specialised courses.

You have to ensure that the college you want to enrol at can show you proof of their government registration and their accreditation with the right bodies.

You can also contact the Department of Higher Education and Training to confirm with them as to whether or not the college is registered with them. Either way be sure not to get scammed by a college making promises that they can not keep!

What is the Difference Between Registration and Accreditation?

Private institutions have to be Registered with the Department of Higher Education and Training. Registration is about ensuring that the organisation is well-run and has enough money and funding to keep running and operational while the students are studying. You don't want to pay your fees for the full year and then find the college closes down half way through the year. 

Registered colleges will be part of a fidelity fund so that in the unlikely even of the college closing students will be refunded the money they paid for fees.

Accreditation is different and is focused on the quality of the courses that the institutions offer. You have to ensure that as well as the whole college being Registered, the actual course you are studying is also Accredited by the relevant authority. This is to ensure the standard of the teaching and to make sure that the certificate you get when you pass is worth the paper it is printed on.


Members of the public who wish to enquire about the registration status of a private college or institution can contact the DHET Call Centre on 0800 8722 22 or on 012 312 6300/5881.


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Student reacts to finding out that her short course is unaccredited on her laptop

With more people in the country seeking out some form of tertiary education, it becomes tougher for students to take note of whether or not institutions are accredited, as their main objective may just be to achieve entry at an institution. As a result, young people that have enrolled for and finished a short course might come to find that their short course is, in fact, not accredited, but this does not mean that their education was a sham.

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