Advert: UCT PhD Package Project - Call for Nominations for 2017

11 May 2017 - 13:15

Attached hereto, please find a request to nominate doctoral students for the Doctoral Package Project 2017.


In 2017 there will be 12 new awards valued at R75,000 each.  These will be distributed as follows:

  • COMMERCE - 2 Awards.
  • ENGINEERING – 2 Awards.
  • HEALTH SCIENCE - 2 Awards.
  • HUMANITIES - 2 Awards.
  • LAW - 2 Awards.
  • SCIENCE - 2 Awards.

Heads of academic departments are requested to nominate no more than one candidate per department and to complete the Nomination Form for submission to the Deputy Dean/Director for postgraduate studies in the relevant faculty. 

The Deputy Dean/Director will select and put forward the best candidates for the number of awards available in the relevant faculty in 2017.


*General Conditions of Award:

  • Applications from individual students will not be considered. Heads of academic departments/units are required to nominate suitable candidates to the Deputy Dean/Director for Postgraduate Studies in their faculty.
  • Only students who register for the first year of PhD are eligible for nomination.* However, faculties may motivate for consideration of nominees should they be proceeding to the second or third year of registration for the doctoral degree, as long as the nominee is commencing with the first year of research towards the thesis component of the degree.
  • Full-time staff members are ineligible and cannot be nominated.
  • There are a limited number of awards available, hence the limited number of nominations that can be put forward. 
  • The main criteria that nominators should heed are academic excellence and the ability of the candidate to complete the degree.
  • The Doctoral Package Project includes a guaranteed scholarship of R75,000 per year for three years which will be available to the successful candidate on condition that:
  • the candidate provides evidence of satisfactory academic progress in years 2 and 3;
  • The academic department provides the nominee with part-time remunerated employment of up to 12 hours per week;
  • the academic department provides, or assists the nominee to source an additional award that, together with this award of R75,000 and the remuneration from part-time employment, creates overall ‘package’ of no less than R150,000 for the academic year. However, the total value of the ‘external’ award(s), the remuneration for the compulsory part-time employment within the academic department, and the PhD Package award may be more than R150,000, but no more than R283,000.

Conditions of Award:

  • Nominees are required to have secured a place to study and a supervisor in an academic department at UCT. 
  • The Nominators of successful candidates must undertake to provide remunerated part-time employment up to 12 hours per week to the nominee. Such employment must be formally remunerated and processed via the UCT Human Resources Pay Roll.  Conditions apply to part-time employment and earnings may be subject to income tax deductions.
  • The Nominator is required to assist the applicant to secure further support in the form of external awards (eg. NRF or a departmental award).
  • Earnings from the part-time employment and the values of external awards must total R75,000 or more, so that the total PACKAGE, including this scholarship of R75,000, comes to no less than R150,000, but no more than R283,000.

The Nominator is required to provide evidence that the part-time employment has been offered and accepted, and evidence that the required balance of funds has been secured.


Successful nominees must:

  • register for full-time doctoral study at the University of Cape Town;
  • agree to subject her/himself to a series of performance assessments on his/her academic work and on such employment;
  • enter into and adhere to a bi-lateral agreement with her/his supervisor (this is known as the UCT Memorandum of Understanding - MoU), outlining the work-plan for the research project and time-frame for completion of the degree;
  • plan and organise an external seminar related to her/his field of study, to be held in the Postgraduate Centre of the University of Cape Town (limited funds are available to support the seminars);
  • provide a full report on the seminar;
  • provide bi-annual progress reports reflecting academic progress;
  • comply with the University’s policies, rules and procedures, and
  • produce at least one publishable paper or equivalent scholarly output in the three-year tenure of the award.

Successful nominees may not hold any other employment concurrently with the above-mentioned part-time departmental employment.

Academic Criteria:

Only nominees who achieved the honours or master’s degree with 65% or more and/or a good master’s degree (preferably with distinction) are eligible for nomination. Nomination is open to students in any area of study.


The UCT-sourced bursary component of the Doctoral Package Project is valued at R75,000 per annum. 

Successful nominees will not be able to source this scholarship unless evidence of a further departmental, NRF or other external bursary/scholarship is shown, and evidence of having secured part-time employment of up to 12 hours per week in the relevant academic department.  The total value of the additional award(s) and earnings from the required part-time employment within the academic department must not be less than R75,000, bringing the total Doctoral Package up to a minimum of R150,000.

However, the nominated student may hold more than the total of R150,000 up to the UCT limit of income for PhD students which is R283,000 in 2017.


The tenure of the award will be for 1 YEAR, renewable for a maximum of 2 further years, conditional on continued support (in the form of the required part-time employment and ‘external’ awards) via the relevant academic department.  All renewals of the UCT-sourced component of R75,000 will be contingent on satisfactory academic progress.  Funding will be limited to 3 years, for the first, second and third year of registration for the degree.  No requests for support in the 4th year of study will be considered, except where prior approval has been given to a nominee who registered in the 2nd or 3rd year of study.

Compulsory Employment:

  • The hours of part-time employment will be limited to no more than 12 hours per week, and such employment should ideally be related to the general area of study being undertaken by the successful candidate, and must be located within a relevant academic department. Remuneration for the part-time employment must be routed through UCT’s Human resources department.
  • The part-time employment will take the form of typical paid work allocated to students, including but not confined to tutoring, demonstrating, assistant lecturers, assistant researchers.
  • The remuneration from employment may be taxable.


Nominations from academic departments must be forwarded to the Deputy Dean/Director of Postgraduate Studies in the faculty.  

  • COMMERCE - 2 Awards.
  • ENGINEERING – 2 Awards.
  • HEALTH SCIENCE - 2 Awards.
  • HUMANITIES - 2 Awards.
  • LAW - 2 Awards.
  • SCIENCE - 2 Awards.

It is important to note that there is no funding available for any additional awards, and the number allocated to each faculty is final.  Unused funds due to any faculty not utilising an award in any given year may not be carried forward to the next academic year and will be recovered by the Postgraduate Centre & Funding Office.


All enquiries should be forwarded, via email, to


The closing date for nominations is 31 May 2017

(Faculties may request an extension of the closing date but no nominations will be accepted after August 2017)


Please note that:

  • Applications received directly from students will not be accepted or considered.
  • Late, incomplete and/or ineligible nominations will not be considered.
  • A nomination does not guarantee an award.
  • The decisions made by the Deputy Dean/Director for Postgraduate Studies in each faculty will be final.