Which postgraduate degrees are offered in Plant Sciences?

BScHons, BScAgricHons, MSc, MScAgric, and PhD.

Who can apply for postgraduate studies in the Department of Plant Sciences?

Any person with an undergraduate and/or postgraduate degree in either Botany, Plant Breeding, or Plant Pathology. Students in possession of a baccalaureus degree will apply for admission to honours, those with an honours degree for master's, and those with a master's degree for PhD studies.

Can I apply for postgraduate studies if I have a degree in a related discipline?

Yes. The department reviews all applications and where appropriate, may stipulate that bridging courses be completed before an application for honours, master's or doctoral studies is considered.
South African students wishing to register as Professional Natural Scientists in a particular career should take note of the under- and postgraduate requirements stipulated by the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions

How are previous qualifications appraised?

UFS Student Academic Services are responsible for accreditation of degrees or other qualifications from non-South African universities.

Where can I obtain information on course content?

The yearbooks are available at UFS. Click on ‘Academic Programmes’ and select the appropriate document.

How do I apply?

Complete the official UFS application form (UFS, Prospective Students…), pay the application fee, provide evidence of the deposit, and send the documents accompanied by a detailed and certified academic record, curriculum vitae, and contact details of two referees, to the University of the Free State, PO Box 339, Bloemfontein 9300, South Africa. Students wishing to pursue a particular project should include a project proposal. Students funded by their employers should indicate the level of financial support.

To apply online, click here

What criteria are used in approving applications for postgraduate studies in Plant Sciences?

Previous qualification(s), academic performance, research career and/or potential, supervisory capacity in the proposed field of study, viability of the thesis project, infrastructure, and funding.

Does the department offer financial assistance to postgraduate students?

The department does not offer official scholarships, but several staff members have bursaries available from external funding organizations.

Can postgraduate studies be completed on a distance-learning basis?

Yes. Depending on infrastructure and support systems, students may be allowed to complete part of their research work at the institutions where they are employed.

How are research projects funded?

The Department of Plant Sciences does not receive a university budget to fund postgraduate research projects. Funding should be acquired, in advance, through research grants. For students already employed, projects may be funded by their home institutions.

Are there any regulatory issues to consider?

All postgraduate students are required to acquaint themselves with, and sign the departmental Code of Conduct (UFS, Faculties, Natural and Agricultural Sciences, Departments, Plant Sciences, Documents, Postgraduate Policy).

Are there deadlines for registration?

Students pursuing programmes with coursework should register in January for 1st semester modules and in July for 2nd semester modules. First-time registration of master's and PhD students in degree programmes without coursework may occur throughout the year.
Students should take note that they should only register for those modules they plan to complete within that specific academic semester or year.

What are the tuition fees for the respective degrees?

Tuition fees are determined by UFS Management and not the departments. Students should contact the university administration for a breakdown of costs.

What are the living costs in Bloemfontein?

Current estimates (2023) for accommodation and living expenses range from R3 800 to R5 500 per month. Rooms, without meals, in private student houses vary between R2 700 and R4 500 per month.

Do foreign students need medical insurance?

Medical insurance is compulsory for all foreign nationals studying at the UFS. Estimates for 2023 are R6 500 to R8 500 per year.

For any Financial Aid information, click here...

Where can foreign students obtain more information about the UFS?

UFS International office. Contact Louise Steyn (+27 51 401 2501).


Elfrieda van den Berg (Marketing Manager)
T: +27 51 401 2531

Dilahlwane Mohono (Faculty Officer)
T: +27 58 718 5284

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