Unisa Confirms NSFAS Allowance Payment Dates

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Students enrolled at South Africa's largest university will finally receive their NSFAS allowance payments this week. Here's how much they will be paid. 

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The University of South Africa (Unisa) has assured National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) allowances will be paid to students this week. The disbursement process began on 19 March 2024. 

This announcement will come as a welcomed relief for NSFAS-funded Unisa students as Unisa, unlike other universities, had not yet distributed student funds for February 2024.

Unisa NSFAS students should already be receiving their remittance advice confirming the amount to be paid to them.

Remittance advice is a notification from the payer that payment for an invoice has been transmitted and will be received very soon. Once a student receives their remittance advice they will receive their allowances. 

Following this you should be receiving your allowance within 48 hours.

The university emphasised the importance of accurate bank details for timely payment of NSFAS allowances. 

Qualifying students are reminded to capture their banking details correctly on the link provided on myUnisa for their payments to be made timeously

Unisa also distanced itself from a misleading social media post claiming delays and misuse of NSFAS allowances. The university denounced the letter as "bogus" and its contents "farcical and completely false."

The university underscored its financial well-being and proper allocation of NSFAS funds. They urged students to disregard the fake letter and rely on official communication channels for accurate updates.

How Much Will Students Receive?

NSFAS funding for distance learning students like those at Unisa is calculated based on registered courses. Students can receive up to R5,460 for learning materials and, if enrolled in a full-time course load (minimum 120 credits), an additional R3,045 for personal expenses.

Future Unisa NSFAS Allowance Payments

While Unisa, like all other universities, will facilitate February and March NSFAS allowances, NSFAS confirmed a return to the direct payment method in April 2024. Students will need to register with the direct payment service providers previously assigned to their institutions.

NSFAS Status

Previous Stories On Unisa and NSFAS

13th March : NSFAS Reveals Why Unisa Allowance Payments Are Late

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) recently announced that almost all of the university students funded by the scheme received their NSFAS allowances. However, students at one university faced a slightly longer wait to receive their allowances. 

South Africa’s largest university, the University of South Africa (Unisa) is the one institution that has not yet disbursed allowances to students. NSFAS explained that the institution is consolidating which allowances students should receive. 

The University of South Africa (UNISA) is finalising the process of determining allowances based on the number of modules registered by students.

Apart from being South Africa’s largest university, Unisa uses the Open Distance e-learning way of teaching. The institution is therefore classified as a distance learning institution. 

This also means that the NSFAS allowances received by the institutions’ students also differ from those of other institutions. Students who study from home do not require an accommodation allowance or a travel allowance. 

NSFAS Funding For Distance Learning Students

NSFAS defines Distance Learning as a mode of provision based primarily on a set of teaching and learning strategies (or educational methods) that can be used to overcome spatial and/or transactional distance between educators and students. 

It avoids the need for students to discover the curriculum by attending classes frequently and for long periods. Instead, it may use a combination of different media, tutorial support, peer group discussion, and practical sessions. 

The financial aid scheme explained that students who attend institutions like Unisa are categorised as distance learning students.

A university student studying at a non-contact university. 

NSFAS’ funding policy sets out that allowances for students in distance education programmes are calculated based on the number of courses registered up to a maximum of R5,460.

Distance University students studying an equivalent full-time course credit load qualify for the personal care allowance of R3,045 per academic year. This requires a student to be registered for a minimum of 120-course credits in one academic year.

University students, who are studying less than 60 course credits towards their qualification, qualify for the learning materials allowances only.

NSFAS appeals


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Unisa flagging plagiarism

South Africa’s largest university will investigate students after the institution flagged possible plagiarism during examinations. Thousands of students are set to be investigated. 

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