Nelson Mandela University Admission Requirement

Nelson Mandela University Admission Requirement

  • The table below explains how well you will need to do in your school subjects to meet the minimum entry requirements for each type of qualification.
  • It is important to note that the table refers to minimum entry requirements.
  • The university may add additional requirements for specific programmes.
Qualification Minimum Statutory Entry Requirement
Higher Certificate Pass NSC, with a minimum of 30% in the language of learning and teaching of the higher education institution, together with any other university requirements.
Diploma Pass NSC with: An achievement rating of 3 (40 -49 %) or better in four subjects, together with any other university requirements.
Bachelors Degree Pass NSC with: An achievement rating of 4 (50 – 59 %) or better in four subjects from the designated list, together with any other university requirements.

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Designated subjects

  • Applicants who wish to enroll for a degree programme need to ensure that four of their seven subjects are from the designated list.
  • The list already includes three of the four compulsory subjects for obtaining the NSC, namely, Languages, Maths or Maths Literacy.
  • A learner must then select one or more subjects from the list below, provided that they are not from the same group in order to apply for a degree programme.
Accounting Languages
Agricultural Sciences Life Sciences
Business Studies Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy
Dramatic Arts Music
Economics Physical Sciences
Engineering Graphics and Design Religion Studies
Geography Visual Arts
History Consumer Studies
Information Technology

How to calculate your Admission Point Score (APS)

  • The APS system allocates point values to the levels of achievement obtained for your matric subjects.
  • Write down your relevant NSC subjects and the levels obtained.
  • Allocate points according to the table below.
  • Add up the number of points you have to calculate your APS.
  • Alternatively, use our online APS calculator

Table A: School Performance Score (SPS)

NSC NSC % APS APS Percentage
8 90 -100 %
7 80 -100 % 7 80 -89 %
6 70 -79 % 6 70 -79 %
5 60 -69 % 5 60 -69 %
4 50 -59 % 4 50 -59 %
3 40 -49 % 3 40 -49 %
2 30 -39 % 2 30 -39 %
1 0 -29 % 0 0 -29 %

Example 1

To enrol for the Diploma (Analytical Chemistry) you need an Admission Point Score (APS) of at least 34, as well as a National Senior Certificate (NSC) pass in Mathematics & Physical Science on at least a level 4 (50 – 59 %).

NSC Subject NSC % Level APS Points allocated
English 65 % 5 5
Xhosa 60 % 5 5
Mathematics 70 % 6 6
Geography 55 % 4 4
History 80 % 7 7
Life Orientation 74 % 6 6
Physical Science 71 % 6 6
Admission Point Score 39

This applicant has met the minimum requirements for admission to the Diploma (Analytical Chemistry).

Example 2

To enrol for the BCom (Accounting) you need an Admission Point Score (APS) of at least 38, as well as four subjects from the designated list and a pass in Mathematics on at least level 5 (60 69 %).

Matric Subject NSC % Level APS Points Allocated
English 70 % 6 6
Afrikaans 80 % 7 7
Mathematics 69 % 5 5
Accounting 65 % 5 5
Life Orientation 60 % 5 5
Physical Science 74 % 6 6
Life Sciences 81 % 7 7
Admission Point Score 41

This student has met the minimum admission requirements for the BCom (Accounting) programme.

Additional requirements

In addition to the minimum APS requirement, additional subject requirements have been set. These include:

  1. Mathematics: This is required for certain programmes. Only performance in the core Mathematics topics (papers 1 and 2) will be used when making admission decisions. However, school learners are encouraged to also take the optional Mathematics topics. In certain programmes, applicants who have Mathematical Literacy instead of Mathematics may be admitted to a programme where a Mathematics entry requirement has been set. In this instance, additional modules may be added to the programme, which may extend the length of the programme.
  2. Mathematical Literacy: In view of the importance of quantitative literacy for success at Higher Education studies, a minimum of a 3 (40-49%) for Mathematical Literacy is preferred for likely admission to National Higher Certificate and National Diploma programmes and a 4 (50-59%) for likely admission to degree programmes where Mathematics is not a requirement, unless otherwise indicated.

Disclaimer: All reasonable steps have been taken to ensure that the information contained on the website is accurate at the date it was published. Nelson Mandela University reserves the right to make changes to the programme details (e.g. rules, admissions requirements) as published on the website. Prospective students are advised to consult the admissions department prior to applying.