Can You Get A NSFAS Loan If You Have A NSFAS Bursary?


NSFAS is once again offering student loans to deserving students. However, can you get a NSFAS loan if you received a NSFAS bursary?


The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) offers financial support through two main channels: bursaries and student loans. These options fall under the Comprehensive Student Funding Model, designed to help deserving students access tertiary education.

Bursaries vs. Loans: What's the Difference?

NSFAS bursaries provide comprehensive financial aid to students in approved courses at universities and TVET colleges which students don't have to pay back. This funding covers tuition and registration fees, along with allowances for food, accommodation, and learning materials.

NSFAS loans, on the other hand, are for students from "missing middle" households. These are families with a combined annual income between R350,000 and R600,000. Loan recipients need to repay the funds after completing their studies.

So, Can Bursary Students Get Loans?

Currently, NSFAS bursary students generally don't qualify for loans because their income falls below the R350,000 threshold for loan eligibility.

However, there are a few exceptions:

  • NSFAS Bursary Students Now Working: If a bursary student completes their qualification and wants to pursue postgraduate studies but no longer qualifies for a bursary due to income changes, they might be eligible for an NSFAS loan.
  • Bursary Rejection Due to Income: Students who applied for a bursary but were rejected because their household income exceeded the threshold might be considered for an NSFASQ loan.

NSFAS acknowledges the limitations for postgraduate bursary recipients and might review their eligibility criteria in the future.

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