The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS)
Do you come from a poor or working-class family with a combined household income of not more than R350 000 per annum? The Department of Higher Education and Training has a bursary designed to assist you with funding towards a tertiary qualification of your choice. The bursary is administered by the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) and is available for persons who wish to or are studying at a public institution of higher education and training (university or TVET college).
Struggling to update your contact details on the myNSFAS portal?
How to create your NSFAS account
Who qualifies for NSFAS?
Funding will be available to:
- Students from families with a combined household income of not more than R350 000 (three hundred and fifty thousand Rand) per annum, registering at TVET colleges and universities for the first time,
- Students returning to TVET colleges and universities to complete or continue their first undergraduate qualification. Only select post-graduate qualifications are funded, please refer to the website for the full list.
- Students from families with a combined household income of up to R122 000 (one hundred and twenty-two thousand Rand) returning to TVET colleges and universities after a gap year or two to complete their first undergraduate qualification.
- Students from families who are recipients of child support grants or disability grants administered through South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) will automatically qualify for NSFAS funding.
- Orphans will automatically qualify for NSFAS funding, provided there is confirmation of their status.
What the bursary covers
NSFAS funding covers the actual cost of tuition plus prescribed learning materials -this means the tuition fee for the specific programme that the student it registered for; these fees differ depending on the field of study (e.g. engineering; medicine; art; history etc.) and the institution that the student is admitted to. AND dependent on eligibility a subsidised accommodation and living costs including meals. The bursary funding is for the duration of study and does not require any repayment.
What would be expected of you?
Upon qualifying for the NSFAS bursary, a beneficiary is required to sign a NSFAS Bursary Agreement with terms and conditions. Beneficiaries will then be expected to:
- Comply with all academic requirements as set by institutions.
- Attend and participate in lectures, tutorials and academic support programmes as required by the institution;
- Complete all set assignments and/or tasks as required in terms of the due performance requirements of the Institution;
- Undergo all tests and examinations (written and oral) as required in terms of the due performance requirements of the institution;
NSFAS funding for postgraduate qualifications
NSFAS only accepts funding applications for the following postgraduate qualifications:
- B TECH: ARCHITECTURAL TECHNOLOGY
- B TECH: ARCHITECTURE (PROFESSIONAL)
- B TECH: BIOKINETICS
- B TECH: BIOMEDICAL TECHNOLOGY
- B TECH: BIOTECHNOLOGY
- B TECH: CARTOGRAPHY
- B TECH: CHIROPRACTIC
- B TECH: CLINICAL TECHNOLOGY
- B TECH: DENTAL TECHNOLOGY
- B TECH: EMERGENCY MEDICAL CARE
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: CHEMICAL
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: CIVIL
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: ELECTRICAL
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: INDUSTRIAL
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: MECHANICAL
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: MECHANICAL: MECHATRONICS
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: METALLURGY
- B TECH: ENGINEERING: REFRACTORIES
- B TECH: FORESTRY
- B TECH: HOMOEOPATHY
- B TECH: NURSING
- B TECH: NURSING SCIENCE
- B TECH: NURSING: COMMUNITY NURSING
- B TECH: NURSING: PRIMARY HEALTH CARE
- B TECH: NURSING: OCCUPATIONAL NURSING
For more information on how to access this funding, visit the NSFAS website
January to March 2019
Beware of fraudsters - 12 April 2019
NSFAS update - 1 April 2019
All approved students will receive their food-and travel allowances before the 5th of April and thereafter before the 5th of every month.
Payments for private accommodation will be paid in four installments, March, April, July and September directly to the bank accounts of service providers of private accommodation. Payments for March are still in process and will be done in this week.
Important notice for approved NSFAS students - 7 March 2019
All approved NSFAS students have already received an upfront payment of R5 000 for books and R275 for living expenses. On the 1st & 2nd of March, another payment of R 1 000 was made to cover food and travel allowances.
Submission of lease agreements have closed on all campuses and we are therefore now in a position to identify the students who qualify for meal allowances and those that qualify for travel allowances. We are busy to process payments for the remainder of February and March. This amounts to R1 605 for food allowances to all students staying in residences and students staying in private accommodation. Students qualifying for travel allowances will receive R725. The payments will be made as soon as possible.
NSFAS students awaiting the outcome of appeals will still be allowed to submit their lease agreements and allowances will be made accordingly.
First-year Registration and Orientation meal deductions and senior students exceeding their NSFAS capped amount will be corrected over the remaining months of April until November.
Status on NSFAS cash allowances -7 February 2019
Cash allowances for 12 548 registered NSFAS Students were already transfered to Fundi for cash payouts of which 9 385 were successfully transfered to students' bank accounts, bringing the total payout to more than 75% of registered NSFAS students. However more than 3 000 students have not yet submitted their banking details.
Allowances for a further 3 617 registered NSFAS students will be transfered today to Fundi for payouts.
All students who have not submitted their banking details on the Fundi website yet, are requested to urgently do so to allow for the process to be completed.
Students who need assistance should go to the Student Accounts and Bursaries Office on their campus.
NSFAS completes review of rejected applications and prepares for appeals - 23 January 2019
The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) has completed all assessments of the 2019 applications of first time entering students. Of the 417 000 applications received, more than 300 000 students have been declared approved, pending registration at public institutions for NSFAS funded qualifications. Read more
Important information for NSFAS students - 18 January 2019
Important information for NSFAS students! Please download and read the document relevant to you:
- FTEN students (students that enrolled for the first time at a Higher Education Institution)
- Senior continuing students
- Senior students that applied for the first time for NSFAS and were approved
- Guidelines for the DHET bursary scheme
- DHET Bursary scheme allowances for contact university students in 2019