UNISA NSFAS Allowance 2023 | Exciting News for New and Returning Students

Documents Required for Applying for Allowance

NSFAS is a program initiated by the South African government to assist financially disadvantaged undergraduate learners in covering their tertiary education tuition fees once they finish high school. The scheme is backed by funding from the Department.

NSFAS aims to provide financial assistance to all needy students. Fortunately, all programs support NSFAS Students.

Allowances for Returning Students

  • Returning students will be the first to receive their allowances, which include learning material and incidental allowances. 
  • The disbursement of these allowances commenced on Wednesday, 15 March 2023
  • This means that eligible students who fall into this category can expect their allowances to be credited to their accounts on or after this date.
  • The learning material allowance is intended to assist students in purchasing the necessary resources for their studies, such as textbooks and other educational materials
  • The incidental allowance, on the other hand, is designed to cover additional expenses that may arise during the academic year, such as transportation or personal expenses.


  • For returning students who were sponsored by NSFAS in 2022 but have not yet finished their qualification, it is important to register temporarily during Unisa’s registration period. 
  • This temporary registration will allow you to continue your studies while waiting for confirmation of NSFAS funding for the academic year of 2023.
  • If you are a previous recipient of financial aid from NSFAS and received funding in the year 2022, but your funding request for the year 2023 has been denied and you’ve lodged an appeal for reconsideration, it is recommended to make the minimum registration fee payment while waiting for a decision on your appeal.
  • This will ensure that you maintain your enrollment and can proceed with your studies during the appeal process.

Appeal Period

  • The appeal period for new and current students in 2023 will be from January 20, 2023, to February 20, 2023.
  • All students should necessarily pay their fee through the NSFAS portal on time.
  • For further information and the necessary supporting documents for the appeal process, please visit the website www.nsfas.org.za.

Who can apply for NSFAS Allowance?

  • Students who have their financial aid applications rejected or have their financial aid withdrawn as continuing students have the right to appeal to NSFAS.
  • The outcomes of these appeals rely on the funds accessible within the allocated budget. Only students who have formally requested financial assistance from NSFAS will be taken into account for the appeals process.

Who cannot apply for NSFAS Allowances?

However, there are certain situations in which students are not eligible to submit an appeal. This includes:

  • Students who are enrolled in a qualification that NSFAS does not provide funding for.
  • Students who have exceeded the N+2 rule (or N+3 for students with disabilities), meaning they have exceeded the maximum number of years allowed to receive financial aid.
  • Students taking a gap year, who were previously declined financial assistance by NSFAS because they did not meet the academic eligibility requirements.
  • If the educational institution has not forwarded the student’s registration details to NSFAS or if an inaccurate registration record has been submitted, any questions or concerns should be directed to the institution for clarification.

Allowances for New Students

  • For new students who qualify for the incidental allowance, the disbursement process will also take place on 15 March 2023. This means that eligible new students can anticipate the arrival of their incidental allowances on or after this date.
  • The incidental allowance aims to provide financial support to new students as they navigate their first year of higher education, ensuring that they have the means to cover unforeseen expenses that may arise.
  • Furthermore, new students who opted not to receive a laptop will receive their learning material allowances beginning on 22nd March 2023.
  •  This allowance is intended to aid new students in purchasing the required learning materials for their courses. 
  • It is important to note that this disbursement date applies specifically to new students who have opted not to receive a laptop as part of their NSFAS package.

Documents Required for Applying for Allowance

Documents Required for Applying for Allowance

To complete the application process, you will need to provide the following documents:

  • A photocopy of your identification document (ID).
  • Proof of household income.
  • Copies of your parent’s identification documents if you are a dependent applicant.
  • An academic record or transcript of your educational achievements.

Please submit the documents required with your application for the smooth process and working.

Failure to meet Academic Eligibility 

Appeals for students who did not meet the academic eligibility criteria will only be taken into consideration if certain conditions are met. These conditions comprise:

  • The student is currently enrolled in their studies but was not considered a Full-Time Equivalent Needys (FTEN) or Full-Time Non-Needys (FTN) student during their previous academic term.
  • The student’s inability to successfully complete the academic term is attributed to a severe illness lasting for two months or more, occurring either during the term or examination period.
  • There has been a recent death in the student’s immediate family during the academic term.
  • The student has experienced victimization through a violent crime, such as rape or abuse.
  • The student became pregnant and gave birth within the academic term. The institution has assessed the student’s situation and prepared the necessary NSFAS standard propensity letter, confirming that the student will complete their qualification within an additional academic term.
  • The student is disabled, and a medical report shows that their inability to complete the academic term is directly linked to their disability. The college has assessed the student’s situation and filled out the necessary NSFAS standard propensity letter, affirming that the student will finish their qualification within an extended academic term.
  • The student possesses proof that the educational gains submitted to NSFAS are inaccurate.

In these specific cases, allowance appeal will be taken into consideration by NSFAS. It is important for students to provide the necessary supporting documentation and evidence to support their appeal.

Allowances amount Paid to Students

  • The disbursement of allowances by NSFAS is a crucial aspect of its mission to provide financial aid to South African students in need. By disbursing these allowances, NSFAS aims to alleviate the financial burden on students and enable them to focus on their studies without the added stress of financial instability. 
  • The timely provision of allowances ensures that students have access to the resources they need to succeed academically and make the most of their educational opportunities.
  • Unisa has already disbursed financial allowances to 90070 students funded by NSFAS, and we are currently completing the process of organizing allowances for students who were reviewed and confirmed by NSFAS at a later stage.

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