Dear UNISA Students
In December 2017, President Zuma announced increased funding through the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) for first-time entering TVET college or university students from South African households with a combined annual income of up to R350 000.
What does this mean?
- If you are a first-time entering student, and your application for the 2018 NSFAS funding is approved, NSFAS will pay your 2018 student fees to Unisa.
- If you are an existing NSFAS grantee, your NSFAS loan will be converted to a grant (bursary) that does not need to be re-paid to NSFAS.
- If you are an existing student but are not a NSFAS grantee, you will need to pay your own student fees.
Although the threshold to qualify for NSFAS assistance has been increased from R122 000 to R350 000, this only applies to new students (not returning students) in 2018. The extended funding (for a returning student with a combined annual household income of less than R350 000) will be phased in over the next five years.
What is a combined annual household income?
This is the total income earned by the student and his or her direct family (spouse, mother, father or legal guardian) in the form of wages, salaries, grants, pensions or other sources of income, including rental or business income.
The gross combined annual household income (income before deductions) may not exceed R350 000 per annum.
Who should apply?
You may apply for the extended 2018 NSFAS grant if
- you are registering at Unisa for the first time for an undergraduate qualification.
- you have never before registered for any formal qualification at any other higher education institution.
- you are a South African citizen (with a South African ID).
- your combined annual household income does not exceed R350 000 per annum.
Who should not apply?
- Students with a combined annual household income of more than R350 000 per annum.
- Students who have already applied for and qualify for NSFAS funding for the 2018 academic year.*Students who have previously received NSFAS funding or who qualify for NSFAS funding for the 2018 academic year will have their loans converted to grants.
- Students who have previously registered for any formal qualification at any higher education institution. This includes all re-registering Unisa students.
- Foreign students (any student without a South African ID).
When can I apply?
Unisa students may apply for the extended 2018 NSFAS funding from 3 to 26 January 2018 as part of the registration process.
Please note: NSFAS applications are closed for 2018. As part of the Unisa registration process, however, you will be provided with an option to apply for the 2018 extended NSFAS grant for Unisa students. Unisa will submit the details of those students who have been provisionally verified to NSFAS.
How do I apply?
As part of the registration process, you will be provided with an option to apply for the 2018 extended NSFAS grant for Unisa students. Please note that incomplete and / or late applications will NOT be considered.
When will I know the outcome of my application?
Unisa will provide you with the initial outcome of your application for the 2018 extended NSFAS grant for Unisa students by mid-February for students registered for semester 1 modules and by mid-April for students registered for year modules.
- If your application is successful, your registration will be finalised. Your Unisa student fee account will be adjusted once the NSFAS grant has been processed.
- If your application is unsuccessful, you will need to settle your student fees yourself. The minimum amount must be paid as indicated on your account before your registration will be finalised.