Interdisciplinary studies in development

The University of Cape Town supports interdisciplinary study. Subject to meeting the entry requirements for the course and approval by the programme convener and the course convener, students are encouraged to select courses from outside their programme's home faculty. An important objective of this website is to provide a centralised source of information on these opportunities.  

Students may select as electives whichever courses that interests them, regardless of their academic background, provided they meet the minimum entry requirements for the courses. Therefore students are encouraged to search through this list of courses and other faculties' courses. There are many courses listed on this website that allow students from different academic backgrounds to enrol for them. Students are encouraged to select such courses to enrich their learning experience.

For example: APG4023S URBAN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PROCESSES is a HEQSF level 8 course listed which has no course entry requirements. 

All the courses in this website related to the field of development. The courses are listed according to their home faculties and divided into two sections: HEQSF Level 8 and HEQSF Level 9.

Guide to terminology

The website makes use of the South African National Qualifications Framework (NQF) credit system which is a points system that explains the number of credits that a student requires to obtain a qualification. For example, a student may require 180 NQF credits in order to obtain a masters in a chosen field. This means the student must select courses with NQF credits that sum up to 180. 

The website also makes reference to the Higher Education Qualification Sub-Framework (HEQSF) level designation. Courses and programmes are ranked according to their competency level using this framework. For an example a master’s programme which is at the HEQSF level 9 programme may require students to only select courses that are at the HEQSF level 9.

Below the HEQSF levels are explained.

  • Level 7: Bachelor's degree, Advanced Diplomas and B-tech.
  • Level 9: Master's degree.
  • Level 8: Honours degree, Post Graduate diploma and Professional Qualifications.
  • Level 10: Doctor's degree

Structure of course codes

Every course described in this website has a unique course name and a corresponding course code. The code structure is uniform, and it gives important information about the course.
Each code, e.g. AAANnnnS, has eight characters, where the first 3 letters of the code (AAA) denote the name of the department offering the course Nnnn is a number; where the first digit (N) enables one to distinguish between undergraduate and postgraduate courses: levels 1 to 3 are all undergraduate courses, level 4 may be either undergraduate or postgraduate courses, 5 and upwards are postgraduate courses; the second, third and fourth digits (nnn) represent a number between 000 and 999 that identifies the course uniquely; S is a single alpha character, specifying the time period during which the course is offered.

The following time periods are used in this website:

  • F: 1st semester course (January –  June)    
  • H: half course taught over whole year    
  • S: 2nd semester course (July – December)    
  • W: full course, year-long    
  • X: not classified
  • Z: non-standard period or other

E.g. CIV2031S Structural Engineering is a course from the Civil Engineering Department (i.e.CIV) and it is an undergraduate course (i.e.‘2’031).

While care has been taken to ensure that all development offerings at UCT are included, there may be relevant courses which are not listed. In addition while every effort has been made to ensure that the website is accurate and up to date, it is the responsibility of the user to confirm the information from other UCT sources e.g. the faculty handbooks.

Please note that meeting minimum requirements does not guarantee acceptance into a course.