Postgraduate Bursaries

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are the different types of Postgraduate Bursaries offered by UNISA?
    1. Postgraduate diploma and Honours: Bursary only convers tuition fee;
    2. Master’s degree by research and experimental research: The bursary covers tuition fees and research essentials limited to R55 000 divided over the first two consecutive years of study towards the qualification;
    3. Master’s degree by coursework: The bursary covers tuition fees and research essentials limited to R25 000 divided over the first two consecutive years of study towards the qualification;
    4. Doctoral degree by research: The bursary covers tuition fees and research essentials limited to R80 000 divided over the first three consecutive years of study towards the qualification and
    5. Doctoral degree by experimental research: The bursary covers tuition fees and research essentials limited to R120 000 divided over the first three consecutive years of study towards the qualification.

  2. Is it possible or advisable to claim for research activities once off for example – during the first academic year of being awarded the post graduate bursary?
    a. Yes, by including all the research activities in your application budget, however the budget ought to supported by the supervisor, please note that the College Master’s and Doctoral Research Bursary Committee will still asses your research activities budget.

  3. How do I apply for a Postgraduate bursary?
    Postgraduate Diploma & Honours Bursaries:
    a. Read thoroughly through the Guidelines, terms and conditions, & note the application opening and closing date; b. Go to the bursary application portal on the website to apply and follow the application steps, ensure that you have your supporting documents (Certified ID, Proof of registration and Academic record).

    Master’s & Doctoral Bursaries:
    a. Read thoroughly through the Guidelines, terms and conditions, & note the application opening and closing date;
    b. Download the Master’s & Doctoral Motivation Form applicable to you;
    c. Accurately and frankly fill up the form and sign together with your supervisor or cosupervisor (No bursaries will be awarded without an approval from the supervisor or co-supervisor), exceptional to Master’s by coursework students without supervisors;
    d. Ensure that the form is fully completed (incomplete applications will not be considered);
    e. Ensure that you have retrieved all required supporting documents;
    f. Then go to the bursary application portal on the website to apply.

  4. Who is New Applicant and Returning Applicant for Master’s and Doctoral Bursaries?
    New Applicant:
    UNISA registered student who is applying for UNISA postgraduate bursaries for the very first time, this includes students who may have previously attempted to apply but were unsuccessful;
    Student who previously completed a previously funded qualification and currently registered for a high qualification to continue their postgraduate studies.
    Student who doesn’t currently hold any UNISA postgraduate bursary; or
    Student who may have an external existing bursary/ scholarship but need further financial aid to continue their UNISA studies.

    Returning Applicant:
    UNISA registered student who is already a beneficiary of a UNISA postgraduate bursary and is continuing with the previously registered qualification;
    Student who may have an existing bursary/ scholarship but need further financial aid to continue their UNISA studies.

    New Applicant:
    UNISA registered student who is applying for UNISA postgraduate bursaries for the very first time, this includes students who may have previously attempted to apply but were unsuccessful;
    Student who previously completed a previously funded qualification and currently registered for a high qualification to continue their postgraduate studies.
    Student who doesn’t currently hold any UNISA postgraduate bursary; or
    Student who may have an external existing bursary/ scholarship but need further financial aid to continue their UNISA studies.

  5. When will I be notified of my bursary application outcome?
    Once the application has gone through the application processing, selection and awarding then the outcome will be communicated through mylife email.

  6. Can I appeal if my bursary has been rejected?

    Yes you can appeal through the Bursary appeal form provided once you have requested the appeal form from cgs-pgb@unisa.ac.za. Please note that the subject heading of your initial email should be: “STUDENT NUMBER – Bursary Application Appeal”. 

  7. What does the budget in my M&D motivation form refer to?

    • “New Applicant-masters-doctoral-motivation-form 2021”

    Relates to the budget for research activities to be executed in the 2021 academic year.

    • “Returning Applicant-masters-doctoral-motivation-form 2021”

    SECTION B: PROPOSED RESEARCH BUDGET – related to the budget for research activities to be executed in the 2021 academic year.

    SECTION D: STUDENT REPORT – relates to budget report of funds for research activities executed in the previous academic year, e.g. 2020 for the 2021 academic year.

  8. Can I fill my M&D motivation form in writing?

    Completing the form on word is encouraged, however handwritten forms are still accepted in a softcopy format (PDF).

    The neatness is encouraged so that your information is seen and loaded accordingly, remember the information on the form is crucial so the more clearly visible it is the better.

  9. Who should I contact in relations to my Claim/Refund Form?

    The Division of Student Funding handles the financial division of the bursary, and any Claim/Refund related queries should be directed to DSF-POSTGRD@unisa.ac.za

  10. How to I Submit my Claim/Refund Form and my SOP contract?

    Submit back to the Division of Student Funding via email using your mylife email address.

  11. Who should I contact in relations to my SOP contract?

    The Division of Student Funding at DSF-POSTGRD@unisa.ac.za

  12. Who is the Postgraduate Bursary Administration Office?

    Postgraduate Bursary Administration Office is a new established section within the College of Graduate Studies under the Quality Assurance and Enhancement department, aimed at being a student-centred platform to assist postgraduate students with UNISA Postgraduate bursary administration queries.

    1. New Applicant-masters-doctoral-motivation-form 2021 – Application form used by a New Applicant who is interested in applying for a masters or doctoral bursary.
    2. Returning Applicant-masters-doctoral-motivation-form 2021” – Application form used by a Returning Applicant who is interested in applying for a masters or doctoral bursary.
  13. Who is the Division of Student Funding?

    The Division of Student funding is the financial department of the UNISA Postgraduate Bursaries in partnership with the College of graduate studies Quality Assurance and Enhancement’s Postgraduate Bursaries administration office.

  14. What do the following abbreviations stand for from Master’ and Doctoral Motivation Form:

    1. CAS – College of Accounting Sciences
    2. CAES – College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences
    3. CEMS – College of Economics and Management Sciences
    4. CEDU – College of Education
    5. CHS – College of Human Sciences
    6. CLAW – College of Law
    7. CSET – College of Science, Engineering and Technology
    8. SBL – School of Business Leadership

  15. What are the supporting documents required to be attached when applying for PostgraduateDiploma & Honours Bursaries?
    • Proof of academic record
    • Certified ID copy
    • Proof of registration

16.   What are the supporting documents required to be attached when applying for Master’s & Doctoral Bursaries?

    • Master’s and doctoral motivation form (PRIORITY DOCUMENT)
    • Unisa proposal module results (Candidates registered for Master’s or Doctoral degree by Research)
    • The applicant’s academic record (The candidate registered for Master's degree by coursework)
    • Proof of registration

17. Can I submit my Master’s & Doctoral Motivation Form with attachments via email if the online application portal is not working?

    • No, If the portal is not functioning ICT will fix the issue as soon as possible.

18. Can I resubmit my documents if there is an error or if I forgot to attach a supporting document?

    • No unfortunately, the application tool was not built to allow more than one submission. Once the submit button has been clicked, it is not feasible to go back and do more submissions. When trying to apply again the tool will read it as a second submission and give an error message of “application already submitted”, we have not made provision for edit yet.
      Please await your application results, once your application has been processed the bursary office will contact you via your mylife email address. Note that you will be contacted for missing documents if there’s any. 
      Can my supervisor submit the Master’s & Doctoral Motivation Form with attachments on my behalf?
      No, the Applicant is the student therefore the application must be submitted by the student.

19. Who is responsible for handling postgraduate bursary related enquires or queries?

    1. The Postgraduate Bursaries Administration Office handles all application related queries (when the student is applying)
    2. The Division of Student Funding (DSF) handles all Financial related queries once the student has been approved and received an email from DSF.

20. Who do I contact in relations to my bursary application?

    1. For academic related enquiries/ queries, e.g. receival/ outcome of my application, contact the Postgraduate Bursaries administration office
    2. For financially related enquiries/ queries e.g. claim/ refund form/ pay-out, SOP contract submission/ balance due from the bursary pay-out, contact the Division of Student Funding

21. Does an international student qualify for the postgraduate bursaries?

    • Postgraduate Diploma and Honours Bursary is only offered to South African citizens (not residents) studying with UNISA.
    • Master’s and Doctoral Bursaries are offered to both South African and International Students, with priority given to South African Students.

22. Is a temporary registration letter adequate as proof of registration?

    • The temporary registration letter is acceptable as proof of registration, however, please note it is advisable that you at least pay the minimum fee in order to secure your registration, as the registration may close before your application is approved.
    • However, once your application has been approved, you will be reimbursed for your fees paid.
    • If you cannot afford the minimum fee, note that once the registration is closed and you are not officially registered and your application is later on approved, your registration will be reinstated for you to continue studying, however it is crucial to note that if your application is unsuccessful you will thus not be registered.
    • NB!!! Bursaries awarded are dependent on the availability of funds, thus awarding is not guaranteed.

23. I do not have a supervisor allocated to me; can I still apply for a bursary?

    • No, but If you are doing Master’s by coursework and you don’t have a supervisor you may apply, please ignore the “supervisor/co-supervisor sections” and state that it is Not Applicable.

24. Can I resubmit later once I have clicked the submit button on the application portal?

    • Unfortunately, the application tool was not built to allow more than one submission. Once the submit button has been clicked, it is not feasible to go back and do more submissions. When trying to apply again the tool will read it as a second submission and give an error message of “application already submitted”, we have not made provision for edit yet.
    • Please await your application results, once your application has been processed the bursary office will contact you via your mylife email address.

Last modified: Wed Feb 17 09:13:18 SAST 2021