University of the Witwatersrand (WITS) Courses and Requirements


When it comes to seeking higher education in Africa, one institution stands out among the rest – the University of the Witwatersrand, commonly known as Wits.

Located in the vibrant heart of central Johannesburg, South Africa, Wits University has earned its reputation as a premier public research university.

In this post, I will be writting about the rich history, academic excellence, and myriad opportunities that Wits offers to students from across the globe.

University of the Witwatersrand (WITS) Courses and Requirements
University of the Witwatersrand (WITS) Courses and Requirements

A Glimpse into the History

Founded in 1896, Wits University has a storied history that spans over a century.

Its roots can be traced back to the establishment of the South African School of Mines, which later merged with the Transvaal University College to form the University of the Witwatersrand.

From its inception, Wits has been at the forefront of academic advancement in South Africa.

State-of-the-Art Facilities

The university’s commitment to student well-being is evident in its modern facilities.

From well-equipped libraries to state-of-the-art laboratories, Wits ensures that students have access to the resources they need to excel in their studies.

World-Class Academics

Wits University has consistently demonstrated its commitment to academic excellence.

With a diverse range of undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctoral programs, it caters to a wide spectrum of academic interests.

The university boasts a faculty of highly qualified professors and experts who are pioneers in their respective fields.

Exploring Undergraduate Opportunities at WITS

WITS University prides itself on offering a diverse range of undergraduate courses across five faculties.

Whether you’re passionate about commerce, engineering, health sciences, humanities, or science, WITS has something to offer that aligns with your academic aspirations.

Let’s go deeper into the undergraduate entry requirements, some popular courses, and the application process at this prestigious institution.

Undergraduate Entry Requirements

Before embarking on your academic journey at WITS, it’s essential to understand the entry requirements.

To be eligible for admission to an undergraduate degree at WITS, you must possess a National Senior Certificate (NSC) with a minimum Admission Points Score (APS) of 35.

The APS is calculated based on your best seven subjects, including Life Orientation.

However, it’s important to note that some courses may have additional requirements, such as specific subjects or minimum grades in certain subjects.

For instance, if you aspire to pursue a Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) in Accounting, you will need to meet the minimum APS of 35 and attain a minimum grade of 60% in Mathematics.

Programs, like the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB), may have higher APS requirements.

For example, the MBChB program typically requires an APS of 48.

For a comprehensive overview of the entry requirements for each course, you can visit the WITS website. This valuable resource will provide you with detailed information to ensure you meet all the necessary criteria for your chosen program.

Popular Courses at WITS

WITS University offers a wide array of undergraduate programs to cater to various academic interests.

Some of the most sought-after courses at WITS include:

  1. Bachelor of Commerce (BCom): Ideal for those interested in business and finance.
  2. Bachelor of Arts (BA): Explore the humanities and social sciences with this versatile degree.
  3. Bachelor of Science (BSc): Enter the world of scientific discovery and research.
  4. Bachelor of Engineering (BEng): For aspiring engineers, this program offers a solid foundation.
  5. Bachelor of Laws (LLB): A stepping stone to a career in law and legal studies.
  6. Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB): Pursue a path in the medical field with this program.
  7. Bachelor of Nursing (BNur): Prepare for a rewarding career in nursing and healthcare.
  8. Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm): Explore the world of pharmaceuticals and healthcare.
Bachelor of Commerce (BCom)Business and finance studies.
Bachelor of Arts (BA)Humanities and social sciences exploration.
Bachelor of Science (BSc)Scientific discovery and research.
Bachelor of Engineering (BEng)Foundation for aspiring engineers.
Bachelor of Laws (LLB)Preparation for a career in law.
Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB)Path to a medical career.
Bachelor of Nursing (BNur)Training for a career in nursing and healthcare.
Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm)Study of pharmaceuticals and healthcare.
list of undergraduate courses available at WITS

These are just a few of the popular undergraduate programs available at WITS, catering to a wide range of academic interests and career aspirations.

How to Apply to WITS

Now that you’ve identified your desired program at WITS, the next step is the application process.

Here’s a concise guide on how to apply:

  1. Online Application: Start by submitting an online application through the Central Application Service (CAS). Create an account on the CAS website and select the courses you wish to apply for.
  2. Application Fee: After submitting your application, you will be required to pay a CAS application fee.
  3. Supporting Documents: Upload the necessary supporting documents, such as your NSC results and proof of payment, to complete your application.
  4. Application Assessment: WITS will assess your application and notify you of the admission decision.
  5. Acceptance and Registration: If you receive an offer of admission, you’ll need to register for your chosen courses and pay the required tuition fees.

How much is cas application fee at University of the Witwatersrand (WITS)

Here is concise information about the Central Application Service (CAS) application fee at the University of the Witwatersrand (WITS):

CAS Application Fee at WITS

  • For South African citizens, the CAS application fee at WITS is R200.
  • For international citizens, the CAS application fee at WITS is R700.

This CAS application fee is a non-refundable charge and is paid directly to the Central Application Service (CAS).

CAS serves as a centralized application platform, enabling students to apply to multiple universities in South Africa using a single application.

After submitting your CAS application, you will have the opportunity to indicate the specific universities you are interested in applying to.

Please note that individual university application fees, which are typically lower than the CAS application fee, will be incurred separately during this process.

This streamlined approach simplifies the application process for prospective students, making it more efficient and accessible.

Is it hard to get into WITS?

Gaining addmision into WITS will always be competitive because

  • It is a Prestigious University: WITS is one of South Africa’s most prestigious universities and holds a top 200 ranking in the QS World University Rankings.
  • It is a university with Competitive Admission: Due to its reputation and high academic standards, admission to WITS is highly competitive.

Does WITS use the APS score?

University of the Witwatersrand (WITS)  utilizes the Admission Points Score (APS) as a crucial tool in assessing undergraduate applications.

The APS is a calculated score that is derived from an applicant’s performance in the National Senior Certificate (NSC) exams, specifically based on the results of the best seven subjects.

Minimum APS Requirement

  • To be considered eligible for admission to Wits University, applicants must meet a minimum APS requirement of 35.
  • However, it’s essential to note that certain courses may have higher APS requirements.

Course-Specific Requirements

  • In addition to the overall APS, specific courses may impose additional requirements, such as mandatory subjects or minimum grades in particular subjects.
  • For example, candidates aiming to secure a spot in the Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) in Accounting program must meet the following criteria:
    • Minimum APS of 35.
    • Minimum grade of 60% in mathematics.

The Role of APS

  • Wits University relies on the APS as it provides a reliable and objective means to assess and compare the academic performance of various applicants.
  • The APS system also considers the varying levels of difficulty associated with different subjects, ensuring fairness in the evaluation process.

Utilizing the APS Calculator

  • Prospective applicants to Wits University can take advantage of the Wits APS calculator, available on the university’s website.
  • The APS calculator allows individuals to compute their own APS score, providing clarity and transparency in the application process.

The Admission Points Score (APS) plays a pivotal role in the undergraduate admissions process at Wits University.

It serves as an objective measure to evaluate applicants’ academic qualifications, taking into account both overall performance and specific course requirements.

The APS calculator offered by Wits assists applicants in gauging their eligibility accurately.

How much is Wits fees?

Here is a summary of the tuition fees and cost-saving tips for students at Wits University:

Tuition Fees at Wits University

The cost of tuition at Wits University varies depending on the course of study and your residency status.

For South African citizens and permanent residents:

  • The average tuition fee for undergraduate courses in 2023 is R54,800 per year.
  • Some programs, such as Medicine and Engineering, may have higher tuition fees.

For international students:

  • International students typically pay higher tuition fees than South African citizens and permanent residents.
  • The average tuition fee for international students in 2023 is R109,640 per year.

Additional Fees

In addition to tuition fees, students at Wits University are required to pay various other fees, including registration fees, examination fees, and student development fees.

The total cost of attendance for Wits University students in 2023 is estimated to fall between R80,000 and R120,000 per year.

Financial Aid Options

Wits University understands the financial challenges students may face and offers several financial aid options to help ease the burden:

  • Scholarships
  • Bursaries
  • Loans

Additionally, students can apply for financial assistance through the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).

For more detailed information regarding tuition fees and financial aid opportunities at Wits University, it is recommended to visit the Wits website or reach out to the Wits Financial Aid Office.

Cost-Saving Tips for Students

Here are some valuable tips to help reduce the overall cost of your studies at Wits University:

  1. Apply for Financial Aid: Explore and apply for scholarships, bursaries, and loans to alleviate tuition and living expenses.
  2. Part-Time Employment: Consider getting a part-time job to contribute towards your educational expenses.
  3. Utilize University Resources: Take advantage of free and low-cost resources offered by the university, such as the Wits Library and the Wits Career Centre.
  4. Cost-Effective Accommodation: Explore cost-effective housing options, such as shared student flats or on-campus housing, to save on rent.
  5. Cook at Home: Preparing your own meals can be more budget-friendly than dining out.
  6. Student Discounts: Make the most of student discounts available for various goods and services.

By being proactive and resourceful, you can effectively manage the cost of your education while pursuing your academic goals at Wits University.

Does Wits give laptops?

Here I summarize the options available to Wits University students for obtaining laptops and other technology:

Laptop Access Initiatives at Wits University

Wits University recognizes the importance of technology in education and offers various initiatives to assist students in accessing laptops and other necessary equipment.

1. Wits Laptop Loan Scheme

  • The Wits Laptop Loan Scheme enables students to borrow a laptop for a semester or a year.
  • Eligibility criteria typically include enrollment in a full-time undergraduate or postgraduate degree program at Wits and demonstrating financial need.

2. Wits Student Computer Store

  • The Wits Student Computer Store offers students the opportunity to purchase laptops and other computer equipment at discounted prices.
  • This option is available to all Wits students, irrespective of their financial situation.

3. Free Access to Computer Labs

  • Wits University provides students with access to various computer labs equipped with a range of software, including Microsoft Office, statistical software, and engineering software.
  • These computer labs are available for students to use at no cost.

Contact the Wits Student Centre.

  • If you are a Wits student in need of laptop access or have questions about these initiatives, it is advisable to reach out to the Wits Student Centre.
  • The Student Centre can provide you with detailed information regarding the Wits Laptop Loan Scheme, the Wits Student Computer Store, and the available computer labs.

Additional Ways to Obtain a Laptop

Apart from the university’s initiatives, here are some alternative methods to acquire a laptop for your studies at Wits University:

  1. Scholarships or Bursaries: Seek out scholarships or bursaries that cover the cost of a laptop as part of their financial assistance packages.
  2. Part-Time Employment: Consider working part-time to save up for a laptop purchase.
  3. Seek Support from Family or Friends: Approach family members or friends who may be willing to assist with financing a laptop.
  4. Purchase a Used Laptop: Consider buying a second-hand laptop, which can be a cost-effective option.
  5. Laptop Leasing: Explore laptop leasing options if you prefer a temporary arrangement with lower upfront costs.

By exploring these various avenues, you can find a suitable solution to ensure you have the technology you need for your studies at Wits University.

Is Wits or UCT better?

Here is a concise comparison between Wits University and the University of Cape Town (UCT) to help prospective students make an informed decision:

Wits University (University of the Witwatersrand)

  • Location: Situated in Johannesburg, the largest city in South Africa.
  • Academic Strengths: Known for strengths in engineering, science, commerce, and law.
  • Diversity and Social Justice: Wits is celebrated for its commitment to diversity and social justice issues.
  • Tuition Fees: Typically offers lower tuition fees compared to UCT.

UCT (University of Cape Town)

  • Location: Located in Cape Town, often considered one of the most beautiful cities globally.
  • Academic Strengths: Renowned for strengths in medicine, law, and the arts and humanities.
  • International Reputation: UCT has a strong international reputation and is recognized for research excellence.
  • Tuition Fees: Generally has higher tuition fees compared to Wits.

Factors to Consider

When deciding between Wits and UCT, consider the following factors:

  • Location: Determine whether you prefer the urban environment of Johannesburg or the scenic beauty of Cape Town.
  • Academic Interests: Choose the university that aligns with your academic interests and offers the courses you wish to pursue.
  • Reputation: Research the reputation of both universities in the specific field of study you are interested in.
  • Cost: Evaluate your budget and affordability in terms of tuition fees and living expenses.

Campus Visits and Conversations

If you’re still uncertain, consider visiting both campuses and engaging with current students and staff.

This firsthand experience will provide valuable insights into the culture, atmosphere, and opportunities each university offers.

Ultimately, the choice between Wits University and UCT should be based on your unique needs, preferences, and academic aspirations.

Both institutions are esteemed in South Africa and offer a range of opportunities for personal and academic growth.


In conclusion, the University of the Witwatersrand (WITS) offers a world of opportunities for undergraduate students.

With its stringent yet fair entry requirements, a plethora of popular courses, and a straightforward application process, WITS is a prime destination for those seeking a quality education in South Africa.

Begin your journey towards academic excellence at WITS today!

Also See:

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University of South Africa (UNISA) Courses And Requirements

Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) Courses and Requirements

Durban University of Technology (DUT) Courses and requirements

University of the Western Cape (UWC) Courses and Requirements


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