Health, education and law are popular choices

The Durban University of Technology Steve Biko campus. Picture: Khulasande Tshayile.

The Durban University of Technology Steve Biko campus. Picture: Khulasande Tshayile.

Published Jan 22, 2024


Durban — Health Sciences, Bachelor of Education and law degrees continue to rank among the most popular choices of study among KwaZulu-Natal’s matriculants.

Thousands of prospective students from the matric class of 2023 applied last year to institutions of higher education in KZN to pursue tertiary studies.

The University of KwaZulu-Natal received 365034 applications from 160 059 applicants for about 9 000 first-year places.

The most popular courses are offered by the Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine and the Faculty of Health Sciences. There were almost 15 000 Bachelor of Education applications, while 13 000 students applied for Bachelor of Nursing, and 9 439 wanted to study Bachelor of Social Science.

The Durban University of Technology’s most popular programmes were the Diploma in Hospitality Management, Bachelor of Education in Senior Phase & Further Education and Training Teaching: Languages, Diploma in Drama, Bachelor of Journalism, B Nursing, Diploma Management Sciences: Human Resources, Diploma Shipping & Logistics, Diploma in Tourism Management, B Health Science: Diagnostic Radiography and Diploma Management Sciences: Business Law.

The Mangosuthu University of Technology in Umlazi received 96 867 applications for 3 852 undergraduate academic programmes.

The most sought-after courses at the institution are the Diploma in Information Technology (ECP), the Diploma in Office Management & Technology, and the Diploma in Public Management.

The University of Zululand received just over 100 000 applications for programmes offered at both the Kwa-Dlangezwa and Richards Bay campuses on the KwaZulu-Natal North Coast. The university has space available for 4200 first-year students, said Siyanda Mntambo, acting director of communications and marketing at the university.

The academic programmes that are popular among applicants include Bachelor of Nursing Science, Diploma in Logistics Management, Bachelor of Education in Foundation Phase Teaching, Bachelor of Education in Intermediate Phase Teaching: Languages and Humanities, B Laws, B Social Work, Diploma in Public Relations Management, Diploma in Media Studies, Bachelor of Education in Senior & FET Phase Teaching (Humanities and Social Science Education), BA Correctional Studies, Bachelor of Education in Intermediate Phase Teaching: Languages, Maths, Natural Science & Technology, and BA in Drama, Theatre and Performance.

More than 580 000 students applied to study through Unisa, which has space for about 52 000 students in its undergraduate academic programmes. Higher certificates, Bachelor of Education and law degrees are the popular choices, as in previous years.

Wits University registrar Carol Crosley said the university had received 145 535 applications.

“We have a place for approximately 6 355 first-years. Among our most popular degrees are the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Education.

“The Bachelor of Science, which offers 15 different fields of study, has 29 257 applicants; the Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery has 22 288; the Bachelor of Education (Senior Phase and Further Education & Training) 19 335 and Bachelor of Laws 18 295.

“The Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery are always in demand and the Bachelor of Education and Laws likewise still rank among the most popular,” said Crosley.

Stellenbosch University in the Western Cape received about 88 085 undergraduate first-year applications for only 5 716 spots. The faculties that received the highest number of applications were Medicine and Health Sciences, Arts and Social Sciences, and Economic and Management Sciences.

UCT received a total of 92 841 applications from prospective first-year students for admissions in 2024.

“That refers to the number of applications and not the number of applicants (which is lower as prospective students apply for more than one programme),” said UCT spokesperson Elijah Moholola.

“UCT has capacity to enrol 4 500 first-year students in 2024.

“The Faculty of Health Sciences received the most applications, with a total of 19 029,” Moholola said.

Sunday Tribune