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MA in South Africa

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University of Johannesburg

Johannesburg , South Africa

MA ( Visual Arts )

Course Level: Master's
Course Duration: 2 Years
Application Fees: Free
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Why Study MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

1. Academic Excellence: South African universities offer high-quality education and research opportunities across a wide range of disciplines.

2. Specialization: MA programs allow you to specialize in a specific area within your field of interest, gaining in-depth knowledge and expertise.

3. Research Opportunities: Many MA programs include a research component, giving you the chance to engage in meaningful research projects and contribute to your chosen field.

4. Faculty Expertise: South African universities have experienced faculty members who are experts in their fields, providing valuable mentorship and guidance.

5. Cultural Diversity: South Africa's multicultural environment enriches your educational experience by exposing you to diverse perspectives and ideas.

6. Networking: Universities often organize seminars, workshops, and conferences, providing opportunities to network with scholars, professionals, and peers.

7. Global Recognition: An MA degree from a South African university is internationally recognized, allowing you to pursue opportunities worldwide.

8. Affordability: Tuition fees and living costs in South Africa are often more affordable compared to many other countries, making it an attractive option for international students.

9. Language of Instruction: English is widely spoken in South Africa, making it accessible for international students.

10. Lifestyle and Nature: South Africa's natural beauty and vibrant culture provide a unique lifestyle that can enhance your overall experience as a student.

11. Interdisciplinary Studies: Many MA programs encourage interdisciplinary studies, allowing you to explore connections between different disciplines.

12. Personal Growth: Pursuing an MA allows you to delve deeper into your academic passions, fostering personal and intellectual growth.

MA (Master of Arts) Specializations in South Africa


Example Universities

Course Duration

English Literature

University of Cape Town

1-2 years


Stellenbosch University

1-2 years


University of the Witwatersrand

1-2 years


University of Pretoria

1-2 years

Political Science

Rhodes University

1-2 years

Fine Arts

University of KwaZulu-Natal

1-2 years


University of Johannesburg

1-2 years

Media Studies

University of Western Cape

1-2 years

Gender Studies

University of Limpopo

1-2 years


University of South Africa

1-2 years

Admission Intake for MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

1. Main Intake: The primary intake for MA programs usually begins at the start of the academic year, which typically falls in January or February. This is the most common intake for postgraduate programs.

2. Mid-Year Intake: Some universities might offer a mid-year intake, which typically starts around July or August. This can be an option for students who missed the main intake or prefer a mid-year start.

3. Application Period: The application period for MA programs generally opens several months before the intended enrollment date. It's advisable to start researching and preparing your application well in advance.

4. Admission Decision: Universities typically start sending out admission offers several months before the program's start date. This can vary, but offers are often sent out around 3 to 6 months before the academic year begins.

5. Enrollment: Successful applicants typically begin their MA studies at the beginning of the academic year or the mid-year intake, depending on the university and the program.

Top 10 Universities in South Africa for MA (Master of Arts)


Common Specializations

University of Cape Town

English Literature, History, Politics

University of the Witwatersrand

Sociology, Anthropology, History

Stellenbosch University

Psychology, Development Studies, Sociology

University of KwaZulu-Natal

Gender Studies, African Literature, Visual Arts

University of Pretoria

International Relations, Linguistics, Philosophy

Rhodes University

Political Science, African Studies, Journalism

University of Johannesburg

Media Studies, Linguistics, Cultural Studies

University of the Free State

Fine Arts, History, Psychology

North-West University

Education, Communication, Theology

Nelson Mandela University

Literature, Drama, Creative Writing

Tuition Fees for MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

1. Domestic Students: Tuition fees for domestic MA students can range from approximately ZAR 20,000 to ZAR 100,000 or more per year.

2. International Students: Tuition fees for international MA students can vary more widely, typically ranging from around ZAR 30,000 to ZAR 150,000 or more per year.

Cost of Studying MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

Expense Type

Estimated Annual Cost (in ZAR)

Tuition Fees

20,000 - 150,000


40,000 - 100,000


20,000 - 40,000


10,000 - 20,000

Study Materials

5,000 - 10,000

Health Insurance

2,000 - 5,000

Personal Expenses

10,000 - 30,000

Total (approx.)

107,000 - 355,000

Eligibility for doing MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

1. Bachelor's Degree: Generally, you need to hold a recognized bachelor's degree in a relevant field of study. The field of study might vary depending on the specific MA program you're applying for.

2. Academic Performance: A satisfactory academic record in your undergraduate studies is usually required. Some universities may have specific GPA or grade requirements.

3. Relevant Background: Depending on the program's focus, your undergraduate degree should be in a field related to the MA program you're applying for.

4. Language Proficiency: Proficiency in the language of instruction is essential. In South Africa, many MA programs are offered in English. If English is not your first language, you might need to provide proof of English language proficiency through standardized tests like IELTS or TOEFL.

5. Letters of Recommendation: Some MA programs might request letters of recommendation from professors, professionals, or individuals who can attest to your academic abilities and character.

6. Statement of Purpose: A written statement outlining your reasons for pursuing an MA degree, your academic and professional goals, and how the program aligns with your aspirations.

7. CV or Resume: An updated CV or resume highlighting your academic achievements, work experience, relevant skills, and any other relevant information.

8. Application Fee: Some universities might require a non-refundable application fee to process your application.

Documents Required for MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

1. Application Form: The official application form provided by the university, usually available on their website.

2. Bachelor's Degree Certificate: A copy of your bachelor's degree certificate in a relevant field of study.

3. Transcripts: Official transcripts or academic records from your previous educational institutions, indicating your academic performance and grades.

4. Curriculum Vitae (CV) or Resume: An updated CV or resume highlighting your academic achievements, work experience, relevant skills, and any other relevant information.

5. Letters of Recommendation: Letters from professors, professionals, or individuals who can vouch for your academic abilities, character, and potential for success in the MA program.

6. Statement of Purpose: A written statement outlining your motivation for pursuing an MA degree, your academic and professional goals, and how the program aligns with your aspirations.

7. Language Proficiency Test Scores: For international students or students whose first language is not English, scores from English language proficiency tests like IELTS or TOEFL might be required.

8. Writing Samples or Portfolio: Some MA programs, especially those in creative fields, may require writing samples, portfolios, or examples of your previous work.

9. Application Fee: Some universities might require a non-refundable application fee to process your application.

10. Passport Copy: For international students, a copy of your passport or other identification documents might be required.

11. Research Proposal (if applicable): Some MA programs may require a research proposal if the program includes a significant research component.

Scholarships for MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

1. University Scholarships: Many universities in South Africa offer scholarships, bursaries, or grants to outstanding MA students based on academic merit, research potential, and contributions to their field of study.

2. Government Scholarships: Government departments or agencies in South Africa might provide scholarships or funding opportunities for students pursuing MA degrees in priority areas.

3. Industry-Sponsored Scholarships: Companies and organizations related to the arts, humanities, and social sciences may offer scholarships to students in exchange for research collaboration or future contributions to the field.

4. Research Grants: Some MA programs include research components, and students might have the opportunity to apply for research grants to support their projects.

5. Private Foundations: Private foundations and trusts with a focus on education, culture, and research may offer scholarships to MA students based on academic achievements and financial need.

6. Professional Associations: Industry-specific associations and organizations related to arts, humanities, and social sciences might offer scholarships to students pursuing MA degrees.

7. International Scholarships: Some organizations and foreign governments offer scholarships specifically for international students studying MA programs in South Africa.

8. Diversity and Inclusion Scholarships: Scholarships aimed at promoting diversity and inclusion within the arts and humanities fields.

Jobs and Salary after MA (Master of Arts) in South Africa

Education and Academia:

Media and Communications:

Cultural and Creative Industries:

Social and Community Services:

Research and Analysis:

Government and Policy:

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