DAAD / NRF In – Country Scholarships, Africa

DAAD / NRF In – Country Scholarships, Africa

DAAD ( German Academic Exchange Service ) in partnership with the National Research Foundation ( NRF ) is able to offer scholarships for postgraduate studies at South African Universities As part of the “In-Country Scholarship Programme”, in which more than two dozen African universities and university networks participate and which annually supports approximately 1000 African postgraduates, the German Academic Exchange Service ( DAAD ) in partnership with the National Research Foundation ( NRF ) is able to offer scholarships for postgraduate studies at South African universities. The programme is co-funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development ( BMZ ) and the NRF. The scholarship is aimed at future academic staff development without neglecting other sector demands for academically trained personnel.

The NRF lauds this contribution of the German government as being of invaluable support to its own efforts ofsignificantly increasing the number of postgraduate candidates receiving quality education and training; of contributing significantly to the national efforts of human capital development, especially at tertiary institutions, but also for the public and private sectors; and of tangibly engaging in the South African PhD project and, thereby, fulfilling one of the key strategic objectives of the NRF Vision 2020.

Target group :

DAAD and the NRF offer up to 120 new scholarships for Master’s and Doctoral studies in 2018. The programme addresses young and rising candidates who aim at acquiring a master’s or doctoral degree. Preference will be given to full-time registered young South Africans and permanent residents. University staffmembers studying towards a doctoral qualification will also be considered.

Staff members should be enrolled for full-time studies and be exempted from teaching. In exceptional cases, a limited extent of teaching obligations may be accepted but has to be motivated in writing. The host institution has to document precisely and convincingly the quantity and content of the lecturing duties and their compliance with the prevailing goal of the academic qualification of the candidate. An intrinsic link between the teaching obligations and the content of the degree programme is indispensable.

DAAD / NRF In – Country Scholarship Details

The scholarships are designed for students enrolled in full-time two-year Master’s courses or three-year doctoral degree studies. Please Note: The initial award is for one year only. For extensions of the award an annual progress report will have to be completed by the applicant, with input from the supervisor of the research, and submitted to the NRF via the university financial aid / post graduate / research office. Scholarship values are as follows :

Master’s degree : ZAR 80 000.00 p.a.

PhD degree : ZAR 110 000.00 p.a.

Students upgrading from a Master’s degree to a PhD are expected to complete an annual progress report,stating clearly that they have upgraded their studies. Upgrades will be included in the DAAD / NRF Joint InCountry Scholarship Programme. Scholarship holders are not allowed to change to any other DAAD or NRF funding streams during the tenure of the award. However scholarship holders are encouraged to apply to other funding streams / programmes on completion of their funding ( e.g. completion of Master’s degree and wanting to apply for doctoral funding ).

Eligibility Criteria for DAAD / NRF In – Country Scholarships 

Please carefully read through the eligibility criteria before applying :

  • Applicants must be South African citizens or hold permanent residence status in South Africa. In the latter case, both certified proof of university employment / enrollment and residency must be provided.
  • Applicants must have obtained a minimum accumulative grade average of 60% in the previous degree to be considered.
  • Female candidates and those belonging to designated groups are particularly encouraged to apply.
  • Applicants’ last qualification should not be obtained longer than six years prior to year of application.
  • Applicants may come from all those fields of study that have a strong relevance to the national development of the country. Fields include: the natural sciences, mathematics, ICT, engineering, agricultural sciences, applied social sciences and humanities. Social sciences and humanities applications will be considered if the research has a social focus.
  • Applicants who already hold a qualification for the level of funding they are applying for are not eligible.
  • Scholarships-holders are allowed to hold supplementary bursaries, grants or emoluments which may be capped in line with NRF and university policies.
  • The scholarship must not be held simultaneously with a bursary / scholarship from any other NRF source, the NRF administered source, and DAAD administered source or other government sources without prior NRF / DAAD permission.
  • If the applicant does receive any supplementary funding during the duration of the scholarship, this has to be declared to the NRF/ DAAD.
  • Scholarship-holders must not hold full-time salaried employment during the duration of the scholarship. They will be allowed to undertake a maximum of 12 hours of employment which includes teaching, tutorials, and assistance or demonstration duties per week on average.
  • University staff members applying to the programme will have to provide a supporting letter from their human resource department clearly indicating their working hours and status of employment during the tenure of the award.

DAAD / NRF In – Country Scholarship Application procedure

Applications must be submitted through an online application process to the NRF : 

  • Applicants can apply for the DAAD / NRF Joint In-Country Scholarship Programme by accessing the link : https://nrfsubmission.nrf.ac.za/
  • Register / Login using your ID number and password.
  • Select “create new application” from the list of existing calls.
  • Select the call for which you are applying to: DAAD-NRF In-Country Scholarships Programme 2018
  • Complete all sections of the application form.
  • Please attach the necessary documents in one PDF file as per Point 6 above.
  • The online application will ask you for reference details, please list your supervisor as a reference. The online system will send out an email requesting an electronic reference report from your referee /s when you select the final submit button on the application. There is no need to include reference letters on the attachment section.
  • Should you not follow the guidelines for attaching the necessary documents your application will not be considered.
  • Remember to submit your application upon completion.
  • Complete applications will go to the host university, for verification, before being forwarded to the NRF for further processing.
  • No late submissions or incomplete applications will be considered.
  • Applications that do not meet the eligibility criteria will not be considered.
  • Please contact the university postgraduate office or research office if you have any queries.
  • The UCT Internal Closing Date for submitting applications is 14th July, 2017.
  • Your application will be directed to the NRF for further assessment and selection through the DAAD-NRF selection panel.
  • A list of successful applicants that will be funded for 2018 will be published on the NRF website under the student link towards the end of December 2017.

Application Documents :

The following documents are required in the application attachment section:

  • Certified South African Identity Document ( only SA citizens and permanent residents are eligible for this call ).
  • Certified academic record or, in case of applicants with outstanding fees due to the university, attach an official statement that is stamped and signed, stating that the transcript is not issued due to outstanding fees owed to the university.
  • Proof of National Student Financial Aid Scheme ( NSFAS ) or University Financial Aid funding ( if applicable )
  • Applicants with disabilities must upload a medical certificate, in support of the disability.
  • University staff members are only eligible to apply for Doctoral scholarships and will have to attach the following:
    • a. Proof of employment
    • b. A supporting letter from their human resource department clearly indicating their working hours and status of employment during the tenure of the award.

DAAD / NRF In – Country Scholarship Selection Criteria

Applications will be adjudicated by an independent selection panel consisting of South African and German experts in the various fields, which may include representatives of DAAD and the NRF, as well as South African and German academics and a representative of the German Embassy – Cultural or Research Division.

Applications are assessed based on academic merit, research motivation and potential ( indicated by the referees ).

The following selection criteria are taken into consideration:

  • academic merit
  • promise of research ability and potential for academic staff development indicated in referee reports and research outputs ( especially for PhD applicants )
  • significance and relevance of proposed research in particular to the South African context, alternatively convincing research of a national or transnational focus, alternatively a convincing explanation of the regional and or transnational relevance
  • for Masters by course work: convincing motivation indicating future academic and research orientation
  • the likelihood that the candidate will successfully complete a Master’s or a doctoral degree
  • German and or international study or academic experience would be an added advantage
  • capacity of institutional research support and expertise to support application
  • reference letters from supervisor and referees submitted online
  •  previous prizes and awards
  • leadership qualities
  • students are expected to follow up with their supervisors and referees in reasonable time on the submission of their recommendation reports online as this is critical to the application.