NRF Freestanding Scholarships


The NRF offers financial support to students at Honours, Master's, Doctoral and Postdoctoral level. These bursaries and fellowships are made available to outstanding students in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) and Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH). In addition, financial support to students through grant-holder linked bursaries is available, through which researc hers are able to nominate their own students for funding.
Target groups

The bursaries offered through the programme are targeted to eligible and successful SET and SSH students. The set targets are:

  • 60% SET
  • 40% SSH


  • To maintain and increase the quality of highly qualified postgraduates in SET and SSH;
  • To increase mobility of postgraduate students in SET and SSH;
  • To increase, through diverse funding, freedom of choice for postgraduate students in selecting their fields of research, supervisors, and higher education institutions; and
  • To offer international research exposure to post graduate students and postdoctoral researchers in institutions abroad.