Department of Social Work

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply and register to study at Unisa?

Visit the FAQs for undergraduate qualifications for more information on the application and registration process.

What documents are required to apply for a Bachelor in Social Work?

  • A certified copy of your ID
  • A National Senior Certificate (NSC) with degree endorsement with 60% in English and further FOUR content subjects in Matric, or
    A Senior Certificate (SC) with matriculation exemption or qualify for the exemption from the Matriculation Board with at least a C symbol on HG or a B symbol in SG in English and further FOUR content subjects in Matric, orA Certificate in Social Auxiliary Work at NQF level 4 with one year of professional practice as A registered Social Auxiliary Worker; or
    A Higher Certificate at NQF level 5.
  • Two testimonials from credible sources, such as a school leader, a religious leader, or a community leader.
  • A police clearance certificate/a receipt or an affidavit confirming that that you have applied for a police clearance certificate (your second year modules will not be registered if your police clearance is still outstanding).

Once Unisa receives your completed application, you will be invited to write a selection test, which will further determine if you possess the necessary qualities to become a social worker/social auxiliary worker. The university does this to help you make sure that you are choosing the right career path.

What about the document requirements to apply for the Higher Certificate in Social Auxiliary?

  • A National Senior Certificate (NSC) with 30% in English or,
    A Senior Certificate (SC) with at least an F symbol in English. 
  • Two Testimonials from credible sources, such as a school leader, a religious leader, or a community leader.
  • A police clearance certificate/a receipt or an affidavit confirming that that you have applied for a police clearance certificate (your next registration will not be finalised/confirmed if your police clearance is still outstanding).

What is a police clearance certificate?

A police clearance certificate is a document issued by the South African Police Services after checking your criminal records. Unisa needs a clearance because social workers cannot have a criminal record.

Matric results/higher certificates are listed as one of the required documents for both qualifications. What if I have not received my certificate yet? Does this mean I cannot write the selection test?

You will still receive an invitation to write the screening test. However, you will only be invited to register once the university receives your certificate with the required pass rate. Otherwise, your application status will remain as outstanding

What is the screening test like?

The test is a simple multiple-choice test, which takes about two hours. It features questions about your personality, for example, your attitude towards people, your patience and problem solving skills.

Once you pass this test, you will receive a letter informing you that you have been admitted into the BSW/SAW qualification (depending on what you applied for). That will be the end of the process and the beginning of your studies with Unisa’s Social Work Department.

Do I need to complete any other steps before registering for a social work qualification?

All social work students must be registered with the South African Council for Social Services Professions (SACSSP). The SACSSP is a regulatory body for social workers and related practitioners. Unisa will facilitate the process to get you registered with this body.

Please note that a Police Clearance certificate and a copy of your ID will be required for registration with this council. For more information, click here.

If you are studying for the Bachelor in Social Work, you have until the end of your first year of studies to register with them.

If you are applying for the Higher Certificate in Social Auxiliary, you must register with them before you begin your studies.

Last modified: Fri Aug 24 13:41:08 SAST 2018