Please note: the information shared on this webpage is that of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) and does not belong to the Central University of Technology, Free State. The information is shared to assist prospective and current students. The University does not take responsibility for the communication.
What is NSFAS?
NSFAS is an abbreviation for National Student Financial Aid Scheme. It is a government entity that provides financial support for financially disadvantaged and academically deserving university and TVET college students.
When do I qualify for NSFAS funding?
- All South African citizens.
- All SASSA grant recipients.
- If your combined household income is less than R350 000 per year.
- If you are a person with a disability and your combined household income is less than R600 000 per year.
- If you started studying before 2018, and your combined household income is less than R122 000 per year.
- If you have not exceeded the N+2 or N+1 rule (N = the number of years it takes to complete the qualification plus additional 2 or 1 year grace afforded to student).
When do I NOT qualify for NSFAS funding?
- If you are not a South African citizen.
- If you already have a university qualification except when registering for PGCE.
- If you are registered for an unfunded qualification that is not on the PQM (eg AAT qualification at CUT) or Advanced and Post Graduate qualifications.
- If your combined household income exceeds the categories highlighted above.
- When you have Exceeded the the N+2 rule for students registered prior to 2018 and N+1 students registered after 2018.
Where do I apply for NSFAS funding?
You apply via the NSFAS website: http://www.nsfas.org.za/content/index.html
Must I pay CUT registration fees if I have NSFAS funding?
No NSFAS approved students are not expected to pay any upfront registration fees.
How will CUT know that I have NSFAS funding?
The University Fees and Financial Aid officials have access to NSFAS system where they can verify your funding status and NSFAS also shares lists of funded students to the University.
For how long is my NSFAS funding valid?
For the duration of your studies. If you have applied for NSFAS funding, and qualified and received the funding, you will automatically be funded for the duration of your studies provided that you have not exceeded the N+2 or N+1 rule ( N = the number of years it takes to complete the qualification plus additional 2 or 1 year grace afforded to student). IF (i) you pass 50% of your modules, and (ii) meet all the academic requirements for the programme and institution.
Must I reapply every year?
No. If you have applied for NSFAS funding, and qualified and received the funding, you will automatically be funded for the duration of your studies provided that you met the academic progression. If you did not meet the criteria NSFAS will communicate the appeals date where you will have to complete such forms for concession.
Must I pay the NSFAS funding back?
Students that were registered prior to 2018 will have to refund NSFAS as for those years the fund was the loan. As from 2018 NSFAS funds are not to be paid back as it is now a bursary.
What is the difference between a NSFAS student loan and a NSFAS bursary?
NSFAS loan: the student is expected to pay it back which ended in 2017.
NSFAS bursary: the student is not expected to pay back starting from 2018.
I want to study for two qualifications at the CUT at the same time. Will NSFAS funding be available for both?
No. You can only be funded for one qualification at one institution at a time.
I already have a university qualification, but want to enrol for another one, will NSFAS funding be available for it?
No. You can only be funded if you register for PGCE qualification.
If you have a TVET qualification, you qualify to be funded for a university qualification.
I want to enrol for a short course. Can I apply for NSFAS funding?
No. It must be a full, undergraduate qualification, for example a degree, a diploma, or a higher certificate offered by a public university. Occasional programmes are not funded.
What does the NSFAS funding cover?
It is different for universities and TVET colleges:
- Full class fees
- Full accommodation as charged by the university
- Private accommodation that does not exceed the accommodations costs of the university. You cannot qualify for both transport allowance and accommodation allowance 2020 allowances.
- R31 070 Private accommodation per annum ( that is R3107.00 per month for 10months)
- R15 000 per year for meals (that is R1 500 per month for 10 months)
- R 7 500 per year for transport (that is R750 per month for 10 months). You cannot qualify for both transport allowance and accommodation allowance 2020 allowances.
- R 5 200 per year for books once off.
- R 2 900 per year for incidental/personal care costs if you live in a residence – this is included in the meal allowance amount.
How will I pay my landlord if I live in private off-campus accommodation?
If you live in accredited accommodation, the money will be paid directly into the landlord’s bank account. You MUST submit a legally valid lease agreement for private landlords. For 2020 the university will pay your allowances including rent to your bank account and you will have the responsibility to pay the rent over to the landlord. The university will not be held liable by non-payments to landlords.
How will I receive my book, meal, personal care, and travel allowances?
You will have to submit your banking details to the Fees and Financial Aid office. Monthly allowances will be deposited to your account
When will I receive my book allowances?
Allowances are paid before the 1st of every month.
When will I receive my meal allowance?
All allowances are paid before the 1st of every month.
When will I receive my personal care allowance?
All allowances are paid before the 1st of every month and the amount of personal care allowances is included in the meal allowance amount.
When will I receive my travel allowance?
All allowances are paid before the 1st of every month.
NSFAS contact details for more information
Contact Centre Toll Free number: 08000 67327
Facebook: National Student Financial Aid Scheme
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