UCDG is a Department of Higher Education (DHET) instrument, designed for “staff development, student support and development and programme development” in South African universities (DHET 2019). At WSU, it serves precisely this purpose.
It is a crucial source of researcher development funding for staff members studying towards Master’s and Doctoral degrees at WSU or any other institution of higher learning in South Africa.
It covers up to 25% of tuition fees for grantees as well as their research running expenses (such as proposal development, fieldwork, data analysis and subsistence and travel costs) up to a specified amount.
UCDG is also used to cover the costs of various capacity-building and training programmes rendered by the Directorate.
Staff can access the grant by responding to internal calls issued by the Directorate through the University Helpdesk and/or the Directorate’s Vital Mail at the beginning of each year. All completed grant application forms should be submitted to the Directorate by the announced deadline.
See Grant Application Form by following the Policies and Documents link on this site.
Historically Disadvantaged Institutions (HDI) Grant
The HDI Grant also offers an important avenue for the Directorate to fund capacity-building for staff and postgraduate students.
One of the flagship programmes, supported through the HDI Grant in 2019, was the Directorate’s flagship academic writing mentorship programme. The programme, known as the First-time Author Support Programme, targets emerging researchers.
Several externally-funded special research projects offer bursary and postdoctoral research opportunities, and project leaders frequently issue calls for applications.
Funders of special projects at WSU include NRF, WRC, MRC, TIA, NIPMO and DSI, for example. The funders issue national calls that DRI circulates to the WSU research community. Active researchers are always on the lookout for such calls.
International and Local Conference Attendance
The Directorate provides opportunities for WSU researchers and postgraduate students to present the findings of their research at reputable, accredited local and international conferences. Calls open at the end of March each year and close when funds are exhausted.
Applicants for conference funding must be employed full-time at WSU on a permanent basis or be on contract appointment of two years or longer, or be registered postgraduate students at the University.