thinking beyond

Applying to Universities: Letter from The Department of Higher Education and Training

The following information is an excerpt from The Department of Higher Education and Training Letter to University Applicants (PDF) 


Unsuccesful  University Applicant

Dear Applicant

You have received this letter because you applied to study at one of our public universities and have been unsuccessful in your application at the institution of your choice.

We understand this is a stressful time for you and that you will be trying to find another space in a university or college, or may need advice on what your next steps should be.

The Department of Higher Education and Training has implemented the Central Applications Clearing House, or CACH, to assist you at this difficult time.

CACH is designed for prospective students who applied on time for a place at a university and either due to the stiff competition have not been successful at their institution of choice, or, when they applied they met the entry requirements based on their grade 11 results, but after the release of their grade 12 results they no longer meet the requirements.

CACH provides a service to assist you in finding an alternative place within the post school education and training system. It redirects you to various possible options including university spaces that may still be available, TVET college study opportunities, SETA funded learnerships, or other skills programmes. The CACH provides the profile of all students who sign up to post school

institutions that still have spaces available, and tries to match prospective students with the available spaces. If you sign up and such spaces are identified, the institution will contact you and offer you a space. You can also access career development services for advice and assistance via the CACH.

The CACH service opens on 13 January 2020, a few days after the National Senior Certificate (NSC) examination results are released, and will continue to operate until the end of February 2020. To benefit from the service you need to sign up online at cach.dhet.gov.za. Alternatively you may text your first name,  surname and ID number to 49200 or 31629  via a  standard  sms and a call centre agent will contact you and assist you to sign up directly. You can also find out more about CACH on our Facebook page at CACH_SA.

You will only benefit from CACH if you applied to one of the institutions on time during 2019. If you did not apply on time, GACH will refer you to the Department's Career Development Services (CDS) for career advice and counseling. You may contact the CDS directly if you are interested in receiving advice before signing up to CACH. CDS can be contacts by:

Texting or sending an SMS with your question or "please call me" to 072 204 5056; or

  • Call 086 999 0123, which is a call share line, from Monday to Friday between 8:00am and 4:30pm; or
  • Email to careerhelp@dhet.gov.za; or
  • Visit to our offices at 123 Francis Baard, Pretoria; or
  • Facebook at www.facebook.com/careerhelpor,
  • Twitter at www.twitter.com/rsacareerhelp

The CACH service will verify your information before forwarding it to institutions that still have available spaces. If you are matched to an available space the institution will contact you directly to offer you the space. Please note that most universities will not accept walk-in applications during the registrationtim,e and therefore to increase your chance offinding a suitable placement in 2020 it is in your interests to sign up to CACH.

Uploaded: 17 January 2020
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