for tomorrow

Postgraduate & Mature Students

NMMU undergraduate programmes include:

  • Certificates (Cert)
  • Advanced Certificates (AdvCert)
  • National Higher Certificates (NHCert)
  • Diplomas (Dip)
  • National Professional Diplomas (NPD)
  • Bachelor’s degrees (B degrees)

Certificate (Cert)

This qualification usually signifies that you have attained a basic level of higher education knowledge and competence in a particular field or occupation and are capable of applying such knowledge and competence in an occupation or role in the workplace.

Duration of study: 1 year

Example: Foundation / Intermediate / Advanced Leadership Certificates; Certificate in Applied Choral Conducting

Higher Certificate (HCert)

This qualification is primarily vocational, or industry oriented. It provides you with the basic introductory knowledge, critical thinking skills and practical techniques in the chosen field of study. After obtaining the Higher Certificate, graduates may enroll for an Advanced Certificate or Diploma in similar or related field as stipulated by NMMU.

Duration of study: Full-time 2 years / Part-time 3 years

Example: NHCert (Accountancy); NHCert (Financial Information Systems)

Advanced Certificate (AdvCert)

The Advanced Certificate provides you with a sound knowledge base in a particular field or discipline and the ability to apply the knowledge and skills gained to particular career or professional contexts. This also equips you to undertake more specialised and intensive learning. Programmes leading to this qualification tend to have a strong vocational, professional or career focus and holders of this qualification are normally prepared to enter a specific niche in the labour market. Advanced Certificate programmes typically include simulated work experience or integrated learning work.

Duration of study: Full-time 1 year / part-time 2 years

Example: Advanced Certificate in Education (ACE)

Diploma (Dip)

A diploma aims to provide career-oriented, educational training that will prepare you to deliver quality practice in a specific field. A depth and specialisation of knowledge, together with practical skills and experience in the workplace, enables successful students to enter a number of career paths. Vocational diploma programmes typically include simulated work experience or integrated learning work.

Duration of study: Full-time 1 year / part-time 2 years. (Three-year diplomas in a professional field such as Music Education form a foundation for further degree study in the particular field.)

Example: Diploma (Community Nursing Science); Diploma (Management Development)

National Professional Diploma (NPDip)

The purpose of the National Professional Diploma in Education (NPDE) is to provide under-qualified teachers the opportunity to upgrade and get full teacher status. It is not a stand-alone qualification but provides an entry point to the Bachelor of Education degree and an exit point from this degree before its completion.

Duration of study: Part-time 2-3 years

Example: NPDE (Foundation Phase)

National Diploma (NDip)

This qualification is primarily professional, vocational or industry specific. The purpose of the diploma is to develop graduates who can demonstrate focused knowledge and skills in a particular field. Vocational National Diplomas typically include simulated work experience or integrated learning work.

After obtaining the National Diploma, graduates may enroll for a Bachelor of Technology (BTech) degree in similar or related field as stipulated by the University.

Duration of study:

  • Full-time 3 years / part-time 4 years
  • Full-time 1 year / part-time 2 years (if succeeding a National Higher Certificate)

Examples: NDip (Marketing Management); NDip (Financial Information Systems)

Bachelor’s degree

Bachelor’s degrees refer to the initial or first degree qualifications in a specific field or discipline. This qualification enables graduates to demonstrate knowledge and skills required for entry into the labour market, further professional training, postgraduate studies, or professional practice in a wide range of careers.

General Bachelor’s

Some bachelor’s degrees may be made up of modules from more than one discipline and are referred to as general degrees, e.g. BA (General) or BCom (General), or may be career-focused, referring to an area of focus such as the BA in Human Resources Management, BSc in Human Movement Science or BCom in Financial Planning.

Duration of study: Full-time 3 years / part-time 4-5 years

Advanced career-focused/professional Bachelor’s

These bachelor’s programmes have a higher volume of learning and cognitive demand and may lead to further professional development on master’s degree level.

Some programmes are designed in consultation with professional bodies and recognised accordingly as a requirement for a license to practice such profession.

Examples include the Bachelor’s in Pharmacy (BPharm), Architectural Studies (BAS), Law (LLB), Psychology (BPsych), Education (BEd), Engineering (BEng) and Nursing Science (BCur). The Bachelor of Technology (BTech) that follows on most National Diplomas, also leads to further study on master’s degree level (MTech)

Duration of study: Full-time 3 or 4 years