Semester Study Abroad


UCT runs an exciting, varied and successful semester study abroad (SSA) programme. The Faculties of Commerce, Engineering & the Built Environment, Humanities, Law and Science all offer courses to study abroad students.

The study abroad programme is designed for international students who wish to spend one or two semesters at UCT, taking (mostly) undergraduate courses for the purpose of transferring credit, on completion, to their home institution, for (usually) undergraduate degree credit.

  • Students should have completed at least three semesters' study at their home institution prior to their commencement of study at UCT, and should remain registered at their home institution during the period of their study abroad.
  • Courses undertaken may be at undergraduate or postgraduate level, depending on the student's academic background, and the ability of the academic departments concerned to admit the student to the courses.
  • Usually not more than four courses are taken per semester. As a guideline for SSA undergraduate students, a full academic load equivalent to that of a full degree student for a semester, is considered to be between 72 and 90 NQF* credits per semester. *National Qualification Framework
  • In some cases, students take two UCT courses while completing a research project for their home institution.
  • SSA students are offered a six-day orientation programme and have access throughout the semester(s) to an academic advisor, and to staff of IAPO for such advice as may be necessary.
  • A study visa is required.
  • Credits earned as an SSA student may never be counted towards a UCT qualification.

How to apply: 

For more information on how to apply online to the Semester Study Abroad Programme, please download our guide to UCT's online application for semester study abroad students.

Semester study abroad students may approach UCT:

You should be aware that different fee structures and regulations may apply to these different categories of applicants. The same entrance requirements are applied to all applicants.

In order to have credit transferred to your home degree for work completed at UCT, you should obtain written permission to undertake the study abroad programme. Many universities require a pre-departure conference with an advisor. It is your responsibility to learn your own institution's requirements, and to adhere to them.