The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) is a government student bursary scheme which receives its funding budget from, and reports to the Department of Higher Education and Training.
NSFAS offers bursaries to South African students who plan to study at public universities and TVET colleges. They cover funding for more than just tuition fees.
They provide funding for registration, tuition and allowances. These allowances cover transport, living expenses and learning materials.
The following are the requirements for the NSFAS bursary:
- All South African citizens.
- All SASSA grant recipients.
- Applicants whose combined household income is not more than R350 000 per annum.
- Persons with a disability whose combined household income is not more than R600 000 per annum.
- Applicants who first registered at university before 2018 whose household income is not more than R122 000 per annum.
Those who are approved for NSFAS funding often wonder whether they have to reapply for the bursary every year.
The answer is no you do not have to reapply for funding annually as financial need of a student is assessed at the point of first application.
Students are funded for the duration of their studies granted that they pass their modules and meet the academic requirements.
NSFAS will fund students for the entire duration of their course or degree. Most degrees take about 3 to 4 years, whereas medical degrees for example take up to 7 years. However, they will fund an extra year of study should a student fail one year.
If you were rejected by NSFAS when you applied for the first time then you will have an appeal period which will be posted on their website. If you are rejected after the appeal then you can apply next year again.