What Does ‘Awaiting Registration’ Mean on NSFAS?

By Tevait Feanle •  Updated: 05/27/24 •  5 min read

The NSFAS bursary funding helps less economically able students fund their tertiary studies at approved public universities and TVET colleges in South Africa. Sometimes you will find your application status showing ‘awaiting registration.’ Today, we look at what this means and what you should do about it.

What Does ‘Awaiting Registration’ Mean on NSFAS?

The status “Awaiting Registration” on the NSFAS portal means that your funding application has been approved and you have met the academic and financial eligibility criteria. However, you have not yet completed the required registration process at your university or college.

In other words, the “Awaiting Registration” status indicates that NSFAS has approved your funding application, and your funds will be disbursed once you have completed the registration process and your institution has confirmed your registration. You will only receive funding for the academic year or semester once you have been fully registered and your institution has confirmed your registration status with NSFAS.

If you see the “Awaiting Registration” status on your NSFAS portal, you should check with your institution to confirm the registration process. Ensure that you complete it as soon as possible to avoid any delays in receiving your funding. You should also regularly check your NSFAS portal for any updates or changes in your funding status.

How Do You Know if NSFAS has Accepted You?

Once you have applied for funding from NSFAS, you can check if your application has been accepted in these ways:

The application process for NSFAS funding can take time, and it may take several weeks or even months for your application to be processed and for a decision to be made. This is why it is better to start the application process as soon as possible. If you’re unsure about your application status or have any questions about it, it’s best to reach out to NSFAS or your chosen study institution’s financial aid office for assistance.

Can You Register While Waiting for NSFAS?

Yes, you can register at a university or college while waiting for NSFAS funding. In fact, it is important to complete the registration process on time to secure your place in the institution and to avoid any late registration fees. Many institutions offer what is called ‘temporary registration’ for students who are still waiting to hear back from funding sources. 

However, if you are applying for NSFAS funding, you should indicate this during the registration process so that the institution can make appropriate arrangements. You may need to pay a portion of the fees upfront until NSFAS confirms your funding.

Do remember that NSFAS funding is not guaranteed and that you should have a backup plan in case your application is unsuccessful. You can explore other financial aid options, such as bursaries, scholarships, or loans.

What Comes After Processing Registration With NSFAS?

After processing your registration with NSFAS, the organization will evaluate your application and determine whether you meet their funding criteria. This process typically takes several weeks, and NSFAS will notify you of the outcome via email or SMS. You can also check the My NSFAS portal for status updates.

If your application is successful, NSFAS will issue a funding agreement that you will need to sign and return. The agreement will outline the terms and conditions of your funding, including the amount you will receive, the duration of the funding, and any other requirements you need to fulfil.

Once you have signed and returned the funding agreement, NSFAS will pay your tuition fees directly to the institution. Any remaining funds will be given to you to cover your living expenses, like accommodation, food, and books.

Remember that NSFAS funding must be renewed each year, so you will need to reapply for your funding annually. To maintain your funding, you must meet the academic requirements set by your institution and submit all the required documentation to NSFAS on time every year.

What Does ‘Awaiting Valid Registration Data from Institution’ Mean?

If your NSFAS status shows ‘awaiting valid registration data from institution’, it means that NSFAS is waiting to receive confirmation of your registration status with the TVET college or university you want to study through. This confirmation is usually in the form of a data file that the institution sends to NSFAS, which contains details of all the registered students for that academic year.

NSFAS needs this data to verify that you have indeed registered at the institution before they can proceed with processing your funding application. They can’t simply trust your word! Once they receive the data, they will match it with your application and confirm that you meet all the eligibility criteria for funding.

This process can take some time, especially during peak registration periods, so it is advisable to check with your institution to ensure that they have sent the data file to NSFAS. If there are any delays or issues, it is best to follow up with both the institution and NSFAS to resolve the matter as soon as possible. Remember, the sooner you begin your NSFAS registration process, the more time you have to address issues like this.

Getting registered with NSFAS and your institution is your first step to a brighter academic future, so make sure you stay on top of this critical part of the process.

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