The Do’s and Don’ts of Applying to UNISA

The Do's and Don'ts of Applying to UNISA
The Do’s and Don’ts of Applying to UNISA

When it comes to the do’s and don’ts of applying to study at UNISA, many applicants, unfortunately, get it wrong at the first time of asking. Some people may find the application process pretty tough, while others may find it so hard that they give it up and try again another day. Others may not even know why they’re choosing a specific qualification to study. 

Is it because some people want to study for the sake of studying? Do they feel that if they don’t study something, they will regret it later in life? Either way, there are many factors that a student would have to consider before deciding to study further.

With that being said, here are some tips on the do’s and don’ts of applying to study at UNISA:

DO: Know What You Want Before Applying

Before choosing your qualification(s), it’s wise to figure out what exactly it is that you want to do. If you already have an idea of what it is you want to do, then that’s great. Otherwise, you’d have to sit down, reflect and figure out what it is you want to study.

Let’s say, for example, you have a large interest in the sports industry. You would have to then figure out how you can incorporate your love for sports into a career. Once figured out, it’s ideal to look out for qualifications related to the sports industry and see what suits best for you.

One of the key items in life is to know exactly what it is that you want to do. If you set your mind to it, anything is possible. If you think about it, where’s the fun in doing something that you’ll knowingly dread for the rest of your life?

DO: Always Check the Admission Requirements

Many applicants do not always do the proper research when it comes to making an informed decision on what qualifications to study. As mentioned before, doing the research is key – none more so than finding out what the requirements for each qualification are.

The list of requirements that applicants would need to do research on, include:

  • Looking to see whether they meet the APS requirements of the qualification;
  • Find out whether they are able to meet the admission requirements of the qualification.

Having to know what each of the admission requirements for each qualification is key. Applicants will have to check whether they match or better the qualification(s) of their choice.

Also Read: How To Calculate Your APS

DO: Ask Questions

Always ask questions – ALWAYS. There’s no shame in acting like someone who knows the answer to everything. Remember that there’s always something that you don’t know that others may know and vice versa.

The most popular questions on everyone’s mind when it comes to applying for a UNISA qualification include:

  • Where can I find the UNISA Prospectus?
  • If I get an offer for my second choice, should I take it or should I wait till I get word on my first choice?
  • What documents do I need to apply to study at UNISA?
  • How do I find my lost student number?
  • Can I use my qualification (s) to jump immediately into the workforce?
  • What are the requirements for>any course offered by UNISA<?
  • What are UNISA’s banking details?
  • I’ve applied before. Should I pay the application fee again?
  • How long do I have to study a certain qualification?

There’s no limit when it comes to making absolutely sure that you’re making the right decision.

DO: Make Sure Your Second Choice Compliments Your First Choice

This is one of the MAJOR faults of almost every applicant who does not do the required research. An applicant’s second choice has to complement their first choice, in case their first choice was declined due to various factors.

For example, students applying for a Higher Certificate in Education as their first choice, while having a Higher Certificate in Physical Sciences as their second choice.

Looking at the example, it’s easy to see that the 2 qualifications are not related at all. So when applicants who aimed to study the HC in Education actually gets accepted for the alternative qualification, it leaves them with an unnecessary problem (unless they hold an interest in physical science).

First Choice vs Second Choice; the do's and don'ts of applying to study at UNISA
First Choice vs Second Choice

Either way, it’s best to choose an alternative qualification that suits your needs. A perfect example would be a BCom in Marketing Management and a BBA qualification. In other words, the qualifications have to complement each other.

Even if applicants miss out on their first choice, they can still use the second choice to alter it to their needs.

DO: Accept the First Offer You Receive

If an application was deemed successful, UNISA will provide the applicant with an offer. If an applicant is in a position on whether to accept or decline the offer, there’s only one option – take the offer.

It’s best to take the first offer that comes your way, whether it’s the first or second choice. There is every chance that the other qualification will result in a rejection letter, so it’s best to accept the first offer that comes your way. It comes back to having your second choice to complement your first choice. Do not let the second choice be far different than the first choice (unless that’s your preference).

Remember that applicants who received offers only have 10 days to accept the offer. Failure to do so will result in the offer being withdrawn and given to the next candidate. You can find the ‘Accept Offer’ area via UNISA’s application tool which you can find here.

DON’T: Submit Incomplete/Incorrect Applications

Submitting an incomplete application (forgetting to upload a document or failure to submit payment) will result in an application being rejected.

The same goes for submitting incorrect applications. False documents or information that does not match up to the system will be deemed as incorrect. It’s best to prepare beforehand what’s needed before applying. It’s your own future that you’re playing with, and you’d only yourself to blame if no preparation was done beforehand.

DON’T: Wait until the Last Day to Apply

Waiting until the last day to apply for your qualification is a huge risk. Panic sets in on the last day and that could lead to submitting an incorrectly filled or incomplete application.

Granted, there may be some that are fine with applying and paying on the final day. However, it could also prove fatal (in an academic sense) to those who do not know what they’re doing. There’s nothing wrong with leaving it late, but it’s far more beneficial to apply as soon as possible.

The sooner you apply, the sooner you pay, the sooner you find out whether you’re studying at UNISA or not.

Also Read: How To Apply At UNISA 2020

DON’T: Become a Victim of Fraud

Applicants who do not understand the UNISA application process usually requires some help. At the same time, those very people can easily fall prey to fraud by handing over vital information to others who say they there to “help”.

Don’t get us wrong – there’s nothing wrong with going down that route as there are people who truly do want to help out of the kindness of their hearts. However, there is also every chance that you could be ripped off so keep an eye out for that. Make sure that you have absolute trust in the person who’s assisting you.

Alternatively, people who need assistance with their application can head to their nearest UNISA campus. At the campuses, there are student advisors and attendants who are available to assist with applications.

DON’T: Apply For a Qualification You Do Not Qualify For

This is a huge factor in many applications being rejected. Applicants would have to know what their study limitations are before applying. It’s important to know the following when applying:

  • Higher Certificate pass means students can only apply for a Higher Certificate;
  • Diploma pass means students can only apply for a Diploma and lower;
  • Bachelor pass means students can only apply for a Bachelors and lower.

Also, advanced certificates and advanced diplomas are regarded as postgraduate qualifications. This means that applicants would have to at least be in possession of a Diploma/Bachelors qualification before applying.

DON’T: Make Assumptions about Qualifications

Here’s the thing about people in general: We like life to be easy; keeping it safe while looking for the easiest route to get ahead in life. Life almost always never works out that way though.

Some apply for courses which they think is the easiest route to follow without thinking whether it’s right for them. Is it worth it though, ending up studying something that doesn’t spark an interest? An ongoing trend lately has been UNISA students applying for qualification(s) only because it matches their marks. Many also decide to study something that they view as the easiest route into a job – but is it worth it?

Don’t assume that just because a qualification is seen as “easy”, you’ll strike it rich and hit the jackpot in no time. It takes hard work and dedication to study any course at UNISA, especially since it’s a distance learning institution.

Hard work pays off in the end, so make sure that you enjoy what you do instead of feeling miserable when doing it.

Last Updated: 28 August 2019

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15 thoughts on “The Do’s and Don’ts of Applying to UNISA”

      1. Tyhala Carol Vuyokazi

        Hi my name is Vuyokazi Carol Tyhala
        M working as Administrator for Northern cape legislature.
        My aim is to have my own company in the next 3 years.

    1. In order to change your application, you will have to go to your nearest Unisa regional campus and change it through their systems

      1. I have national diploma in police law from Brooklyn city college. Last any qualifications accredited by Seta, my matric certificate doesn’t have enough points. What’s the problem with sets?

  1. Hi I’m nhlanhla I have completed ABET certificate ad I want Bed in intermediate phase .my status says u are not admitted because u meet minimum statutory requirements .help pls

  2. my degree requires 60% for maths and I have 58% , evrything else is good, does that mean I do not qualify? No way around that?

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