Doctoral Office
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RIDS  |  Tygerberg Doctoral Office

PhD Registration

Welcome to the PhD programme in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences on the Tygerberg campus of Stellenbosch University. Please follow the steps below in order to register, but only after you have completed the online application process at and accepted an offer to study at SU in a particular academic year. Please also visit the SU Postgraduate Orientation page.

All new entrants to the FMHS doctoral programme are first registered for a proposal phase for the purpose of successfully completing the proposal review and ethics clearance process. The ideal is that these milestones should be achieved by September of year 1. This form of registration is significantly more affordable than PhD registration, but fees increase if a second year is required to attain proposal and ethics approval. Academic environments are requested to flag staff members who embark on doctoral studies, so that we may apply for a staff rebate.

  • First-year PhD students (preparatory or PhD registration) should reach out, right away, to their academic unit to confirm the details of their postgraduate coordinator and their supervisor;

For new internation​al stude​​​nts ​o​​​n​​ly:​​​
International students are warmly welcomed on Tygerburg campus. Before you do the above, Tygerberg International will require the documents listed below. Any queries can be sent to Tygerberg International (; CC

  • Proof of valid passport (certified)
  • Proof of valid study visa (certified, if applicable)
  • Proof of South African medical cover (if applicable)
  • Proof of payment or scholarship letter

  • Joint degrees: A joint degree may not commence before a formal agreement between SU and the other institution has been reached. Permission for such an agreement must be sought from the director of the SU Postgraduate Office. Do consult the SU Postgraduate Office web page at this link.

The infographic above provides a concise summary of the initial PhD process. Please click anywhere on the graphic to view a larger version. For more detail on and resources for each step, please visit our PhD Support page. Below, please find all the details relevant to returning PhD students.

  • All returning students should submit an annual progress report and an ethical clearance or renewal letter bearing their name to by 15 November every academic year;

  • Returning international students should at the start of each year provide their passport, proof of medical insurance, and proof of payment to Tygerberg International ( CC;​) in order to complete international pre-registration.

  • Students with a financial block will be unable to register, but if a scholarship is due to be paid, please liaise with Ms L Matthee (​​) about the possibility of lifting the financial block.

  • After completing the steps above, by 28 January each new academic year, returning students may register themselves as follows:
    o Click on 'Postgraduate' on the top ribbon;
    o Click on the e-registration button found on the far-left corner of the first ribbon;
    o A new window will open where the student will be prompted to sign in using SU credentials;
    o Next, the system will display steps to register starting with updating personal information;
    o Follow the on-screen instructions and complete all the steps;
    o Students may download proof of registration or account details directly.

  • The main internal supervisors of students who do not manage to complete the PhD in the maximum registration period, are required to write a formal letter motivating continued registration and addressed to the Committee for Postgraduate Research , to accompany the progress report, where a student has exceeded the ordinary maximum duration of four years of PhD registration before graduation during year four. The CPR and Faculty Board will evaluate this application for continued registration before Senate takes a final decision. Individual students will receive communication in this regard. A strict limit is applied to these concessions.

  • Students who still experience difficulties after following all steps above, are invited to write to the registrar's division (, to assist with registration.

Please see an overview of SU registration here:

Please note that the registrar's division (student administration) is ultimately responsible for registration. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​