Honours degrees & postgraduate diplomas

FAQs for honours degrees and postgraduate diplomas: application for admission

Applying for admission

Who must apply for admission?

Everyone wanting to start a new qualification must apply for admission.

This includes

  • first-time Unisa applicants
  • Unisa students changing to a new qualification
  • applicants completing an undergraduate qualification who wish to continue with postgraduate studies

You must re-apply for admission if you previously applied for admission and received feedback, but did not register for any reason.

Please note: If you were previously registered for the same qualification, you do not need to re-apply for admission

When can I apply?

Unisa will accept applications for admission to postgraduate diplomas and honours degrees for the 2019 academic year from
21 August to 28 September 2018.

For how many qualifications may I apply?

You may apply for a maximum of two qualifications, ranked in order of preference (although you may only register for one should both of your applications be successful). Please ensure that you meet all the admission requirements before applying for your qualification(s) of choice.

How do I apply?

Visit the Unisa application website (www.unisa.ac.za/applyHONS) and follow the 4-step process. All applications for honours degrees and postgraduate diplomas must be submitted online. No self-help or hard copy applications will be accepted.

I studied previously through Unisa. Must I also submit my academic record?

Yes. Login to myUnisa and download your academic record. Please submit your academic record as part of the application process. Please note that you do not need to get this unofficial academic record certified, as Unisa can verify the information against the Unisa database.

Will I still be able to submit any outstanding documents after applications have closed?

No. Unisa will not accept any late applications or documents submitted after the closing date for applications.

Fees and student funding

Is there an application fee? If so, how much is it?

The application fee for online applications is R105,00.

Please note:

  • The application fee is only applicable to students who do not have a formal Unisa student number.
    * Student numbers issued for short learning programmes are not formal Unisa students numbers. If you have a student number issued by the Graduate School of Business Leadership, please ensure that you pay the application fee during the application process to receive a formal Unisa student number.
  • The application fee is a once-off fee. Once you have paid the application fee and received a formal Unisa student number, you do not need to pay the application fee again.
  • Use the student number you receive from Unisa AND the application fee reference number (ie STUDENTNUMBER 5370810030). Visit www.unisa.ac.za/paymentinfo for banking details and payment information.
  • The due date for the application fee is the closing date for the application period. Any application submitted without an application fee will not be processed. Please ensure that you keep a copy of your proof of payment.
  • This application fee is non-refundable even if you decide not to study through Unisa or do not qualify for admission to Unisa.

Is the application fee subject to a cooling-off period?


After applying for admission

I’ve applied. What happens now?

  • Based on Unisa's application and selection process, you will not automatically be accepted to study through Unisa in 2019 even if you meet the general academic admission requirements for a qualification.
  • Unisa will assess your application according to the academic admission requirements for your qualification of choice, your final mark received at undergraduate level and the number of places available for the qualification for which you have applied.
  • Unisa will inform you whether or not your application was successful and the qualification(s) for which you have been accepted.

When can I expect feedback on my online application?

The verification of applications takes some time. Applications follow a formal selection and approval process, which may take up to three months to be finalised.

I’ve applied for one qualification, but now want to change to another qualification. What should I do?

It is, unfortunately, not possible to change your qualification once you have submitted your application. You will need to apply for the new qualification during the next application period.

My application for admission to Unisa was unsuccessful. What can I do?

If your application for admission to a qualification or to both qualifications of choice is rejected, you may request a review of your application, either on the basis that you believe the decision was an error on the part of the university, or that further supporting documents may result in a different outcome regarding your application for admission. These appeals will only be considered if the enrolment target of the particular qualification has not been met and / or additional enrolment spaces are available.

Please note:

  • An appeal must be submitted using the prescribed form within ten (10) working days from the date when the applicant received the outcome of his or her application. Failure to file an appeal in the prescribed timeframe constitutes a waiver of the right to lodge an appeal.
  • Not uploading required supporting documents during the application process is not grounds for an appeal.

This form should be submitted via e-mail to Hons@unisa.ac.za (for honours degrees) and PGD@unisa.ac.za (for postgraduate diplomas). 


What are the dates for the compulsory Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration (PGD) study school at the SBL?

A one-week compulsory study school is planned for the second week of February 2019. More comprehensive information will be provided in the acceptance letter.

I want to register, but didn’t apply during the application period. What should I do?

You will need to apply for admission during the next application period. Please visit www.unisa.ac.za/applyHONS for more information.

I have one or more undergraduate modules outstanding for my undergraduate qualification, but would like to register for some honours degree modules (concurrent registration). Is this possible?

To be considered, the following criteria apply:

  • You must have applied for the relevant honours degree during the prescribed application period.
  • The maximum of two outstanding modules may not be your major subjects for your undergraduate qualification. 
  • You must be currently registered for the outstanding undergraduate modules. 

I need to defer my studies (put my studies on hold). When and how can I do this?

Unisa's Admission Policy (par 4) allows a student to defer his or her studies for a maximum period of two years, except in exceptional circumstances determined by the Executive Dean of the College where the student is registered or the Registrar. A student who wishes to defer his or her studies must, before the closing date for re-registration for a particular year, submit a substantiated application to the Registrar using the application for deferment of studies form on the Unisa website. Such deferment must be recommended by the Chair of the Department and Executive Dean of the College concerned and, if granted, is for a period of one year only, after which a further application must be submitted. Deferment will not be granted more than twice, except in exceptional circumstances determined by the Registrar of the Executive Dean of the College. Periods during which a student is permitted by the university to defer his or her studies will not be taken into account when calculating a student's period of registration.