NFR 2023 Closing Dates for Postgraduate Funding Announced

The Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) and the National Research Foundation (NRF) are pleased to announce the call for new applications for the DSI-NRF Postgraduate Student Funding for the academic year 2024. This announcement is crucial for students planning to further their studies in higher degrees, as it outlines the critical dates and requirements for funding applications.

nfr closing dates for 2023

Understanding the Funding

The NRF postgraduate funding aims to support students pursuing honours, master’s, and doctoral degrees in various fields, including Science, Engineering, Technology, Social Sciences, and Humanities. Funding is available in two categories: Full Cost of Study (FCS) and Partial Cost of Study (PCS).

Full Cost of Study (FCS)

The FCS funding is targeted at South African citizens and Permanent Residents who are financially needy (with a household family income of less than R350,000 per annum), living with a disability, or exceptional academic achievers.

Partial Cost of Study (PCS)

PCS funding is available to 5% of international students and South African citizens and Permanent Residents who do not qualify for FCS but meet other NRF scholarship funding criteria.

Eligibility Criteria

The minimum academic requirement for NRF postgraduate funding is a 65% academic record. Additionally, the entry age requirement for applicants is 28 years or younger for honours, 30 for master’s, and 32 for doctoral studies in the year of application.

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Application Process

All applications must be submitted through the NRF Connect System (, as no manual applications are accepted. Students should carefully review the various guide documents available for different levels of study and funding types to ensure a successful application.

Important Documents and Guides

  • DSI-NRF Extension Support for Master’s and Doctoral Application and Funding Guide for 2024
  • DSI-NRF Honours Application and Funding Guide for 2024
  • DSI-NRF Master’s and Doctoral Application and Funding Guide for 2024
  • NRF Postgraduate Scholarship Framework for 2024
  • Frequently Asked Questions on Postgraduate Funding

Key Closing Dates for Student Applications

The closing dates are pivotal for applicants to adhere to:

Level of Study Closing Date
Honours 24 November 2023
First-time Master’s 11 July 2023
First-time Doctoral 11 July 2023
Master’s and Doctoral Extension Support 18 August 2023

Submission Dates for Designated Authorities (DA)

Following the students’ application submission, the Designated Authority (DA) at the institutions will have their deadlines for submission to the NRF:

Level of Study DA Submission Closing Date
Honours Applications 22 December 2023
First-time Master’s Applications 04 September 2023
First-time Doctoral Applications 04 September 2023
Master’s and Doctoral Extension Support Applications 29 September 2023

Contact and Support

Applicants are encouraged to contact the Research or Postgraduate offices at their universities for inquiries. The NRF also provides contact persons for specific enquiries:

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This announcement represents a significant opportunity for students aspiring to advance their education in the 2024 academic year. Prospective applicants are urged to begin preparations early, carefully review all application requirements, adhere to the stipulated deadlines, and seek assistance when necessary. Institutions are encouraged to disseminate this information widely to ensure eligible candidates are aware and can prepare accordingly for these important dates.