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What Does NSFAS Do For Postgrad Students?


NSFAS provides fully subsidised free higher education and training for poor and working class South Africans. However, what are their policies where Postgraduate studies are involved? Does NSFAS fund postgrads?




NSFAS does offer funding to postgraduate students. However, only select courses are funded. If the second qualification is a professional requirement for employment, then it will be funded. 

SAUS said in their list of demands to Minister Blade Nzimande, “Post-graduate students and B-Techs must be allowed to register. We are demanding postgraduate funding.” 

This comes as the demand for more options for Postgraduate students in multiple faculties increases. Students are left with limited options for funding after they complete their undergrad and want to continue. Even if students were funded by NSFAS for their first degree, they will not be funded after. 

Government has stated that they are looking at ways to minimise the crisis of postgrad funding and will be working with NSFAS to solve this issue.

For postgraduate studies, only the students of the following fields are accepted:

  • B Tech – Architecture/Architectural Technology
  • B Tech – Biokinetics/Biomedical Technology/Biotechnology
  • B Tech: Chiropractic
  • B Tech: Clinical Technology/Dental Technology
  • B Tech: Emergency Medical Care
  • B Tech: Engineering (Chemical/Civil/Electrical/Industrial/Mechanical/Mechatronics/Metallurgy/Refractories)
  • B Tech: Forestry
  • B Tech: Homeopathy
  • B Tech: Nursing/Nursing Science/Community Nursing/Primary Healthcare/Occupational Nursing)
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Education
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Accounting
  • Bachelor of Laws/LLB

Postgraduate diplomas, Honours degrees, Masters degrees as well as PhD degrees are not generally funded. Postgraduate students in fields not mentioned above are advised to apply with the National Research Foundation (NRF). Visit for application dates. 

Read our article on funding options for postgrad students here



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