Academic Planning

According to The Development Framework for New Universities in the Northern Cape and Mpumalanga Provinces, the academic planning must enable the new universities to become institutions of choice through excellence in teaching and research. The new universities should have unique programmes and research priorities that will enable them to attract students, academics and researchers from across the country and the world. This implies academic missions that will develop towards specialist niche areas not available in other institutions in the country, and an environment that will attract and retain highly skilled staff, as well as inspire a vibrant student population.

Academic Focus

The academic planning needs to ensure that the new institutions create strong academic hubs, drawing on the individuality of each province to develop a unique academic focus.

The university in Mpumalanga will be a comprehensive institution that will grow over time into a multi-campus University with the seat and main campus in Nelspruit. The programme offerings will be diploma and bachelor degrees with study fields in Agriculture, Health Sciences and Engineering. The former Ndebele College of Education now referred to as the Siyabuswa campus will be a delivery site for teacher education and will be incorporated into the new university.

The university in the Northern Cape will be a comprehensive, multi-campus University with the seat and main campus in Kimberley. The qualification type will be focusing on Higher Certificate, Advanced Certificate and Diploma level as vocational and technology-focused programmes with a phased approach towards formative and professional bachelor's degrees in the study fields of Engineering and Management Sciences.

Programme Qualification Mix

A key principle that has informed the development of the Programme Qualification Mix (PQM) is the need to avoid duplication and to establish unique fields of study. An important challenge in this regard is the need to ensure that the academic footprint provided by the 2014 start-up programmes link to the long-term development of the unique fields of study that are expected to develop over time. The Full Preliminary Programme Qualification Mix (PQM) for the two universities is as follows:

University in the Northern Cape

CESM Category




06 /08

Computer and Information Science/Engineering

Diploma in Information Technology (Applications Development)



04 Business, Economics and Management Sciences

0415 ND: Retail Business Management


0416 ND: Tourism Management

07 Education

07120 B Ed (FET - Maths, Technology & Science)



09 Health Professions and Related Clinical Sciences


090801 B Nursing

Diploma Nursing




0999 H Cert Emergency Medical Care


03 Visual and Performing Arts



0305  - ND Fine Arts

08 Engineering



0808  - B ScEng (Software Engineering)

20 Social Sciences


2005,  200501 Museology/Museum

Studies/Heritage Studies

(New qualification)


01 Agriculture , 13 & 14

Life Sciences & Physical Sciences


1301 & 1401

B Sc (Life and Physical Sciences)

ND Agriculture



University in Mpumalanga


CESM Category







01 Agriculture, Agricultural Operations and Related Services


B  Agric (Extension)



B ScAgric


13 Life Sciences



ND Nature Conservation 


06 Computer and Information Sciences



B Sc Computer Science


04 Business, Economics and Management Studies


ND Hospitality Management

0407 - ND Tourism


07 Education



B Ed (Foundation Phase)



09 Health Professions and Related Clinical Sciences


090801 ; B Nursing (UFS)

0999 ,  H Cert Emergency Medical Care

0991 , B Pharm


11 Languages, Linguistics and Literature



B A Languages (isiNdebele, SiSwati and XiTsonga languages and literature)


08 Engineering



0802 , 080201

Agricultural/Biological Engineering, B ScEng (Agric)

Partnership for Academic Development

A novel approach to the development of the academic programmes has been formulated that draws on the strengths of experts in the higher education system and in the partner institutions delivering the selected programmes.

Academic Champions (AC) and Academic Working Groups (AWG) have been identified to assist in the development of the programmes on the Programme Qualification Mix; while specific sponsoring universities have been identified to serve as partners for the development of these programmes. Partnerships concluded to date are:

  • University of KwaZulu Natal (Agriculture),
  • University of Johannesburg (Hospitality),
  • Cape Peninsula University of Technology (Information Technology and Retail Business Management), and
  • University of the Free State (Education).

Quality Assurance

Discussions with the Council on Higher Education and Training (CHE) have yielded a process for accrediting the 2014 start-up programmes. Academics involved in the delivery of the selected programmes in the sponsoring universities will develop the submissions for accreditation with the CHE.

2014 Start-up Academic Programme

The 2014 start-up programmes for the university in the Northern Cape includes the Diploma in Information Technology (Applications Development) and the National Diploma in Retail Business Management; and the Bachelor of Education (FET Phase Maths, Technology and Science). The 2014 start-up programme in Mpumalanga includes the provision of the Bachelor in Agriculture (Extension); a National Diploma in Hospitality Management; and the Bachelor of Education (Foundation Phase).