How NSFAS Allowances Work at the Start of the Year


At the start of the school year, students usually have to pay registration fee. However, if you're funded by NSFAS, you won't have to pay those fees, even if the university or TVET College asks for them.


The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) has facilitated the provision of tertiary education qualifications for over five million students since its establishment. This was accomplished through the provision of comprehensive studentĀ  funding designed to encompass all expenses associated with obtaining a degree.

NSFAS bursaries cover tuition and registration fees, along with various allowances intended to address the diverse costs linked to tertiary education. These NSFAS allowances include provisions for living expenses, learning materials, transportation, and meals.

These allowances are exclusively available to students enrolled in approved courses at universities or Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Colleges. Additionally, NSFAS extends accommodation allowances to eligible students as needed.

How NSFAS Allowances Work For The Beginning Of The Year

NSFAS typically disburses significant sums of money to institutions at the start of each academic year through upfront payments. These funds are allocated to universities to cover one month of student accommodation expenses and half of the book allowance.

In the case of TVET colleges, NSFAS provides millions in payments to support registration and allocate funds for three months' allowances, considering the registration period from January to March. The objective of these payments is to streamline and facilitate the registration process for all students approved by NSFAS.

NSFAS disclosed that when upfront payments are initiated by the bursary scheme, the payment process follows a specific order.

Firstly, the funds are directed towards allowances, covering various student expenses. Then, the second priority is to allocate funds towards settling the initial installment of the tuition fee.

Universities are required to permit students who are NSFAS bursary recipients to register without paying a registration fee, given that they have been confirmed as provisionally funded. The registration fee is covered as part of their comprehensive tuition fee.

University students benefit from ten annual allowance payments disbursed in monthly installments, spanning from February to November at the end of each month. However, for February and March, payments are made on a bi-weekly basis instead of the usual monthly schedule.

NSFAS provides various allowances to students, including accommodation, meal, and stationery allowances. Adjustments are applied to these allowances for students residing at home or in catered accommodation.

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