Doctoral Office
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RIDS  |  Tygerberg Doctoral Office

PhD Fees and Funding

A doctoral degree is a shared investment - by the state, the university, the individual, and funders - in the future prospects of an individual, community and society. Click on the links to jump to the following sections below:


SU requires that a specified portion of fees must be settled before registration for a particular academic year can occur. Formal written proof that a bursary is due to be paid to your student account by the registration deadline, may in certain cases assist with the lifting of the financial hold to facilitate registration.

Fees for the current academic year are included in Part 3 of the SU Calendar.
SU students may also request a non-binding estimate / quotation from this link.
Please note:
  • Student fees are set for one academic year; fee structures are subject to change without notice.​
  • Additional fee implicants apply when a student exceeds the normal or maximum duration of a programme.

Students registered for a doctoral preparatory phase will benefit from significantly lower fees for the first year of work toward the doctorate, though the amount increases if ethics approval is not attained during year 1.

Doctoral students in the FMHS may request the outstanding balance on their student account, or other account information, from Ms Lesanne Matthee (lm@sun.a​ Specific errors on a PHD student's account may be logged with Ms Anri Engelbrecht ( Please CC these emails to

International students may request a statement for the purpose of lifting the international block from Tygerberg International ( Payment must be made well in time to allow sufficient opportunity for registration before the final cut-off date of 27 January for each consecutive academic year; and 27 March when registering for the first time.

All SU staff are welcome to apply for a staff rebate via FMHS Business Management. Email Ms Lezel Fisher ( No retrospective applications are accepted - applications must be submitted annually, ahead of the year for which rebate is sought.

​Bursaries and Research Funding

Various bursaries are available to PhD candidates - all on a competitive basis. South-African PhD candidates can apply for all available bursaries. International PhD candidates can apply for the SU SU Postgraduate Scholarship Programme, an NRF bursary, or a Harry Crossley bursary. A selection of private bursaries are also available. Research degree funding is also available from several funding bodies, including the National Research Foundation (NRF), South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) and private foundations. These opportunities usually have application closing dates during the course of the second semester with a view to first registration in January.  

  • SU Bursaries and Loans for the current academic year are covered in Part 2 of the SU Calendar.
  • Numerous calls for funding applications are published at this link throughout the year, but concentrated in July to October with a view to support in the following academic year. Also consider making use of the opportunities for funding support.
  • Visit the official page onavailable bursaries.
  • The link from where students may apply for funding/bursaries is here.

Each of these bursaries on the website have specific conditions which may change from year to year. Should you want to pursue a specific opportunity, please enquire directly to

Alongside the scholarships that privilege medicine and health sciences studies, certain funding opportunities have been under-utilised in the faculty. Candidates have disqualified themselves by failing to apply. PhD students with research topics that are inter- or multidisciplinary and include elements of social sciences are encouraged to consider and apply for those funding opportunities that are not restricted to health sciences. For instance, The National Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences and HB & MJ Thom Scholarship programme are often overlooked funding opportunities, that are open to South African citizens. Or, the Next Generation Social Sciences in Africa call is open to citizens of any sub-Saharan African country doing PhD at an accredited university in South Africa, Tanzania, Ghana, Kenya, and Uganda. These scholarships support studies focused on three thematic areas: Peace, Security, and Development. Health sciences project can be linked to these themes with adequate motivation of the project’s relevance and in particular to development in Africa.

To qualify for calls such as these, pay attention to the call and identify ways to demonstrate the potential social impact of a doctoral study. Social issues are diverse with health components included, it takes a holistic approach when applying or answering calls under social sciences. It is always important to prepare adequately for the application process and attend to the specific requirements of each particular funding opportunity.

Please direct enquiries to

Financial Support

South African students from specific household income categories may qualify for funding from the National Student​ Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).

The SU Work-Study Programme allows students to gain work experience while studying. These students earn a minimal income per month to assist with their financial need. To find out more about the Work-Study Programme, contact Ms Lizzie Witbooi at


With regard to Intellimali disbursements, please see Students may track their stipends for living/food and accommodation via the Intellimali portal. Log in with username [your student number] and password [code]. To achieve this, make sure that your correct cell phone number is captured on the university system (My.SUN > My Profile > My Personal Information > Cell phone numbers), as your code will be sent via SMS to the cell phone number entered on mySUN. A portal will open where you need to enter/capture your bank account details. An email containing a link will be sent to your student email address. Please verify the information in the email by clicking on the link. Should you still experience problems, you may enquire to IntelliMali at tel 0872300161 or email address

Student loans

Should you not be awarded a bursary or scholarship, you may want to consider the common practice among students in professional degrees of taking out a private student loan which is usually repayable upon graduation, when you have started your career. It is notadvisable to make use of micro-lenders or informal institutions for this purpose. Financial legislation will protect you and interest rates will be significantly more favourable if you take out a loan from a well established bank licensed in your country of ordinary residence and citizenship.

For more information on possible student loans to South African citizens:

- Please visit this link about independent applications;
- Please visit this link about the option to apply for a loan as per the SU FMHS agreement with the relevant bank;
- You are also welcome to enquire about student loan options at your usual, SA Reserve Bank registered bank.

Food security support

Students facing hunger qualify for food security support if they do not have funding or if they are partially funded and that funding does not make any provision for food.
Process for requesting and receiving food security support:

  • Contact the campus social worker at tel 021 927 7020 or
  • Social worker will conduct an assessment to determine the financial need
  • As soon as the assessment process is concluded, student is informed of the kind of assistance that is offered, for example, issuing food vouchers

Food Security support is administered via the Centre for Student Counselling and Development.