How to choose a college
Choosing a college is not always an easy task. There are many things to consider before you make that final decision. One person’s dream college might be another’s worst nightmare. There are common questions to ask when choosing a college. Use these five easy steps to determine which college is right for you.
CHOOSE THE TYPE OF INSTRUCTION/ TEACHING THAT YOU PREFER
Face to Face
Face-to-face education involves traditional classroom learning. Students who study at a face-to-face learning institute, attend classes daily. Classes vary from early morning to afternoon. Part-time classes usually take place in the evenings.
Distance learning, also known as home study or correspondence learning, is an alternative tertiary education option. With distance learning you do not attend any classes; you study from the comfort of your own home.
Online learning involves enrolling for a course online, and learning through online videos and assignments. Online education has grown popular over the last couple of years, as it allows students to study from home and in their own time.
PUBLIC VS PRIVATE COLLEGES
Public colleges operate under governmental laws and regulations. They receive funding from the government. This allows them to offer bursaries to students who do not have the means to pay for their studies
Private colleges manage their own funding and make their own decisions regarding course material. They do not get any financial help from the government. Governmental issues like the #FeesMustFall strike also do not affect them or their students in any way.
REGISTERED VS NON REGISTERED COLLEGES
Registered colleges offer approved qualifications that are recognised on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF). By studying through a registered college, you can be assured that your qualification is valuable and recognised on the NQF.
Non-registered colleges are not listed or recognised by the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET). This means that their courses can’t be trusted, are not recognised on the NQF and carry no particular value to the student.
ACCREDITED VS NON ACCREDITED COURSES
An accredited course is a learning programme that is recognised on the National Qualification Framework (NQF). When you study an accredited course you can be sure to get a high-quality education and a qualification that is recognised.
Non-accredited courses are great for learning a new skill set, or building on your existing proficiencies. What’s more, they are shorter in duration, which means that you can gain a new skill set in as little as six months.
TYPE AND LEVEL OF REWARD
Certificate of completion
A Certificate of Completion proves that you have successfully completed an industry specific, skills course. These courses have no National recognition.
When you study a national certificate course, you can be assured that your qualification is recognised in the NQF. A National Certificate is equal to a NQF level 4 qualification.
A Diploma course provides career-orientated training, with the purpose to prepare you to work efficiently in a particular field. A Diploma is equal to a NQF level 6 qualification.
An advanced diploma is equal to an NQF level 7 qualification. It proves that you have the knowledge and skill to perform in the workplace and enables you to apply for university level courses.
Degrees can take three to four years to complete. This qualification enables graduates to illustrate knowledge and competencies required for access into the job market and further study.
In order to study a Postgraduates degree, you need to have successfully completed a Degree programme. A Postgraduates degree is equal to an NQF level 8 qualification.