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Who Is Not Eligible For NSFAS?



Who Is Not Eligible For NSFAS?

Who Is Not Eligible For NSFAS? The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) plays a crucial role in providing financial support to South African students pursuing higher education. However, not everyone is eligible for NSFAS assistance. Understanding the eligibility criteria is essential for prospective applicants to determine their eligibility and plan their educational funding effectively.

Who Is Not Eligible For NSFAS?

Funding is not available to students who already have a university degree. A TVET N6-qualified student cannot be funded at a TVET college again, but can be funded at a university.

Non-South African Citizens

NSFAS primarily caters to South African citizens. Therefore, non-South African citizens, including international students, are generally not eligible for NSFAS funding. However, certain exceptions may apply to refugees and asylum seekers with appropriate documentation.

Students Pursuing Short Courses

NSFAS funding is typically available for students enrolled in full-time, accredited undergraduate and postgraduate programs at public universities and TVET colleges. Short courses and non-degree programs are generally not covered by NSFAS funding.

Students With Sufficient Financial Means

NSFAS aims to assist students from financially disadvantaged backgrounds. Therefore, applicants with sufficient financial means or whose family income exceeds the threshold set by NSFAS may not qualify for funding. The scheme evaluates the financial situation of applicants and prioritizes those with demonstrated financial need.


Students Who Have Reached the Maximum Funding Duration

NSFAS funding is typically provided for the minimum duration required to complete a qualification, plus one additional year for undergraduate studies and two additional years for postgraduate studies. Students who have exceeded the maximum funding duration for their program are not eligible for further NSFAS assistance.

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Students with Outstanding NSFAS Debt

Individuals who have previously received NSFAS funding but have outstanding debt with the scheme may not be eligible for additional funding until the debt is settled. It is essential for students to fulfill their financial obligations to NSFAS to maintain eligibility for future assistance.

Students Enrolled in Private Institutions

NSFAS funding is primarily directed towards students enrolled in public universities and TVET colleges. Students attending private institutions are generally not eligible for NSFAS assistance unless the institution has a specific agreement with NSFAS to administer funding for eligible students.


While NSFAS provides invaluable support to countless South African students, it is essential to recognize that not everyone is eligible for assistance. By understanding the eligibility criteria outlined by NSFAS, prospective applicants can assess their eligibility, explore alternative funding options if necessary, and make informed decisions regarding their higher education journey. It’s crucial for individuals who meet the eligibility criteria to apply for NSFAS funding in a timely manner and fulfill all requirements to secure financial support for their studies.

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