Undergraduate & honours qualifications

Higher Certificate in Animal Welfare

Qualification code: 90098
NQF level: 5
Total credits: 120
SAQA ID: 101937
APS/AS: 15
Purpose statement:
Qualifying students will have acquired the knowledge and skills specified by the South African Veterinary Council for the paraveterinary profession of Veterinary Welfare Assistant. More specifically, they will be able to demonstrate and apply knowledge of animal anatomy and physiology, behaviour and husbandry, standards for ethical behaviour in relation to animals, and a range of other knowledge and skills related to animal care and well-being. The qualification strives to promote animal welfare awareness and a commitment to ethical animal care and well-being. It further aims to alleviate the severe shortage of veterinary-related skills in South Africa by providing qualified Veterinary Welfare Assistants to work in support of animal welfare organisations in communities across the country. In so doing, it will promote the general benefits people derive from a healthy companion animal population, and also contribute to advancing social and economic transformation by providing accessible opportunities for individuals and career development to people from all social and cultural groups.
This qualification will be presented using both online and distance learning modes.

Who can register?

  • Applicants may only register once they have received confirmation from Unisa that their application for admission has been accepted. Unisa reserves the right to not process and / or to cancel your registration if it is found that you were incorrectly admitted to a qualification.
  • Re-registering students may register for the 2019 academic year once the registration period opens.


Please note:

  • Should you wish to start a new qualification, please apply for the alternative qualification during the next application period.
  • All communication sent to you after the initial study package (with the exception of study guides) will be sent electronically to your myLife e-mail account (eg follow-up tutorial letters, examination timetables and results, financial statements). You will no longer receive such communication in printed format.


How to choose your modules

Each Unisa qualification is structured in such a way that you need to pass a certain number of modules and NQF level credits within a certain amount of time in order to graduate. You must pass a minimum number of credits / modules annually so that you are able to re-register and continue with your qualification:

  • At least 36 NQF credits (3 modules of 12 credits each) in your first year of study.
  • At least 48 NQF credits (4 modules of 12 credits each) in your second or further years of study.

You may not register for more than the allowed maximum number of credits / modules per semester:

  • At least 60 NQF credits (5 modules of 12 credits each) in a semester.
  • At least 120 NQF credits (10 modules of 12 credits each) per year for year modules.

The maximum number of credits do not include supplementary and / or aegrotat examinations from a previous semester. Modules taken for non-degree / non-diploma purposes also count towards the maximum number of credits allowed.

You must take your available time into consideration when choosing your modules, as this will impact your academic performance. You need approximately

  • 6 to 8 hours per week for semester modules.
  • 4 to 6 hours per week for year modules.

Click here for more information on managing your studies.

Curriculum for this qualification

As you are deciding on the modules you will be registering for, remember to write down the module names and codes so that you have something that you can refer to when completing your registration.

First level