Register to study through Unisa

Credits & exemptions for study units passed at other institutions


Undergraduate qualifications

Important information:

  • Unisa reserves the right to grant and / or decline applications for credits / exemptions of study units passed at any higher education institution.
  • A maximum of 50% of the credits from a completed qualification may be granted towards another qualification.
  • Modules for which a student is granted credits / exemptions for one qualification may not be used towards any other qualification (ie the same credits cannot be used more than once).
  • No exemptions will be granted for Unisa's signature modules.
  • In addition to school qualifications and academic records already submitted, you may be required to submit additional supporting documents, such as a conduct certificate, CV, curriculum and / or an official sworn translation for qualifications not completed in English, as well as any other documents required by the university to assess your application for credits / exemptions.
  • An application for credits / exemption of study units passed at other higher education institutions will only be processed after the relevant closing date for Unisa registrations.
  • Applications will only be processed if all the required documentation is submitted.
  • A SAQA evaluation is required for all foreign qualifications. 
  • Granting of credits / exemptions from study units passed at other higher institutions will disqualify a student from obtaining a qualification cum laude.


Who can apply for credits / exemptions of study units passed at other higher education institutions?

You may only apply for credits / exemptions of study units passed at other higher education institutions if you are registered for a formal qualification at Unisa.

Please note:

  • Please take note of the college-specific rules for the granting of credits / exemptions.
  • Your application for credits / exemptions will not be processed if you are not registered for the formal qualification at Unisa for which you are applying for credits / exemptions.
  • No credits / exemptions will be granted if you are registered for NDP (non-degree purposes).
  • If you are required to apply for full / conditional exemption from the Matriculation Board, your application for credits / exemptions will only be processed for degree studies once the full / conditional exemption has been issued with the correct "with effect from" date.
  • If you are registered for a non-formal programme and wish to apply for credits, please contact the institute that offers the programme.


When can I apply?

You may only apply for credits / exemptions of study units passed at other higher education institutions during Unisa's registration period. Visit www.unisa.ac.za/register for the registration dates.

Applications for credits / exemptions are only processed after the closing date for registrations. Some applications are also referred to the relevant academic department(s) for evaluation.


What are the rules for applying for credits / exemptions of study unit?

Please refer to Rule 10 in Unisa's rules for students and the college-specific rules.


What documents must I submit?

You must submit the following documents:

  • Completed DSAR04 form (incomplete applications will not be considered)
  • An official academic transcript (transcripts downloaded from the internet will not be accepted)
  • Syllabus (course outline)
  • SAQA evaluation (only for foreign qualifications)

* Unisa reserves the right to request additional and original documents and / or to verify the correctness of submitted documents at any time. Submitting fraudulent documents is an offence in terms of the Student Disciplinary Code.


How must I apply?

Complete the DSAR04 form and submit it, together with the required documents, to adhoccredits@unisa.ac.za


How do I transfer credits from an incomplete Unisa qualification to a new Unisa qualification?

Complete the DSAR04 form and submit it, together with the required documents, to adhoccredits@unisa.ac.za

Please note: You do not need to submit an academic record for modules passed at Unisa.


What is the difference between recognition of prior learning (RPL) and an application for credits / exemptions?

During your lifetime, you will have acquired various skills, competencies and experiences. This learning – which may have taken place outside of formal education and training – is valuable, irrespective of where or when it was obtained. RPL permits you to gain credits within formal certificate, diploma and degree qualifications offered by Unisa based on the level and extent of your knowledge. Your prior learning will be measured against specified prescribed learning outcomes. Visit www.unisa.ac.za/rpl for more information.

When you apply for credits / exemptions, you may only apply for study units / modules passed at other higher education institutions.


How do I apply for RPL? 

Please visit the RPL website for more information.


Honours degrees & posgraduate diplomas


Who can apply for credits / exemptions of study units passed at other higher education institutions?

  • If you wish to may apply for credits / exemptions of study units / modules passed at other higher education institutions, please apply in writing using the CGS04 form (only for honours degrees and postgraduate diplomas). Please ensure that you attach all the necessary supporting documents (eg academic records).
  • You must meet the minimum requirements for the qualification for which you are applying for credits / exemptions.


When can I apply?

Only students who have received confirmation from Unisa that their application for admission to Unisa has been approved may registration. You may only apply for credits / exemptions of study units passed at other higher education institutions during Unisa's registration period. Visit www.unisa.ac.za/register for the registration dates.


What documents must I submit?

You must submit the following documents:

  • Completed CGS04 form (incomplete applications will not be considered) submitted to Hons@unisa.ac.za (for honours degrees) and PGD@unisa.ac.za (for postgraduate diplomas).
  • An official academic record at honours / postgraduate diploma level from a recognised higher education institution, which shows your marks / percentages obtained
  • Syllabus (course outline)

* Unisa reserves the right to request additional and original documents and / or to verify the correctness of submitted documents at any time. Submitting fraudulent documents is an offence in terms of the Student Disciplinary Code.


I studied at another university towards an honours degree / postgraduate diploma, but did not complete it. Will I be granted exemptions?

  • You may apply for credits / exemptions on the basis of courses passed at another institution of higher learning, provided that the syllabus / curriculum overlap of such modules is more than 75% of the modules completed at another institution of higher learning.
  • A maximum of 50% of the credits from a completed qualification may be granted towards another qualification.


When can I expect feedback on my application for credits / exemptions?

Applications for credits / exemptions take between 4 and 12 weeks to process. You will only receive feedback once all the administrative and academic processes have been completed. Unisa will communicate the outcome of your application via your myLife e-mail account.


Master's & doctoral degrees

Master's and doctoral students must apply for exemptions when they apply for admission. If you have any enquiries, please contact the Master's and Doctoral Administration Section for assistance (012 441 5702; mandd@unisa.ac.za).

Last modified: Wed Sep 26 07:59:53 SAST 2018