The DSI and NRF are pleased to announce a call of new applications for NRF Postgraduate Student Funding for the 2021 Academic year. All continuing students who are eligible for a second or third year of funding must submit a Progress Report and not a new application.

The NRF minimum academic requirement for postgraduate funding is 65%. Applicants for honours, masters and doctoral funding must be 28, 30 and 32 years of age or younger respectively in the year of application. Successful applicants will be funded either at Full Cost Study (FCS) or Partial Cost of Study (PCS). The FCS funding will be awarded to South African citizens and permanent residents only, who are either financially needy (i.e., those whose combined household family income is less or equal to R350 000 per annum), living with a disability or exceptional academic achievers. However, the PCS funding will be awarded to 5% of international students including South African citizens and permanent residents who could not be funded under FCS but meet other minimum requirements for the NRF scholarship funding criteria.

Scholarships are intended to support Honours, Masters and Doctoral candidates to pursue studies in all areas of Science, Engineering, Technology, Social Sciences, and Humanities.

The NRF has phased out the block grant nomination process as well as the grant-holder linked modalities of funding postgraduate students in 2020. As from 2021 funding year, all the postgraduate students will be expected to apply on the NRF Online Submission System by accessing the link:, no manual applications will be accepted.

University of Venda (UNIVEN) has set its own internal cut-off dates for applications and the applicants must abide by these dates, as follows:

Honours Applications: 1 November 2020

Masters Applications: 1 July 2020

Doctoral Applications: 1 July 2020

Masters and Doctoral Extension Support Applications: 1 July 2020

Doctoral Abroad (Nuffic) Applications Split – Site:  1 July 2020

Doctoral Abroad (Nuffic) Applications Single – Site:  22 May 2020

Please refer to the application and funding documents when completing the online application form at every step of the process. (

For enquiries, applicants’ are encouraged to contact the Directorate of Research and Innovation. or