A bursary is a sum of money that is awarded by an organization to a student, in order for them to study at a university.

These bursaries will cover the costs of the student’s tuition and will sometimes also cover the additional costs associated with studying, such as: textbooks, meal allowances, and accommodation.

The conditions for this funding include:

  • Most companies that provide bursaries require the student to work for their organisation, once they have completed their studies.
  • A typical ‘work-back’ agreement is that the student works-back 1 year for every year that company paid for their studies. For example, if a company bursars a student for 3 years then the student would need to work-back 3 years at that company.

You can find out more about bursary opportunities on our sponsors website.

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A scholarship is financial aid awarded to students to further their education.

Some scholarships are once-off awards and other scholarships are renewed each year until a student has completed their studies.

Scholarships are awarded by various foundations, companies and private individuals.

Scholarships unlike bursaries do not have a ‘work-back’ agreement and are not re-payable.

You can find out more about scholarship and bursary opportunities on the foundations website.


The National Students Financial Aid Scheme is a bursary scheme that provides students that are studying / registered at Public Higher Educations Institutions with financial aid assistance to complete their studies.

To qualify for this funding, your combined annual household income does not exceed more than R350 000 per annum.

To apply, please visit the NFSAS website: http://www.nsfas.org.za

The conditions for this funding include:

  • Prior to 2018, if all courses were passed up to 40% of a student’s loan was converted to a bursary, then the remainder is to be repaid by students upon graduation.
  • From 2018 onwards, students will be awarded a grant – rather than a loan – and this will not be repayable.


Student loans are provided by financial institutions to assist students to further their education.

The conditions for this funding include:

  • Students are required to pay back the loan amount plus interest, once they have graduated.
  • Students would require someone (normally a parent or guardian) to stand surety for the loan amount.