The MSc(Nursing) by coursework and minor dissertation enables a student to build their knowledge in the research topic of their choice and to strengthen their knowledge of research methods. The rationale is to prepare graduates to be leaders in their field, capable of addressing National and African health priorities, building on their prior knowledge acquired in the underpinning nursing programme. The Master of Science in Nursing programmes aim to prepare graduates who will be able to demonstrate competence in the research process, and understanding of the main approaches and paradigms – both qualitative and qualitative – in health sciences research. The programme aims to facilitate the development of reflective practice, the utilisation of appropriate theoretical foundation for nursing practice, identify researchable nursing or midwifery problems and conduct research, the findings of which will contribute to the advancement of the nursing/ midwifery practice. Programmes are based on adult educational principles. Course work is designed to foster leadership, clinical, research and educational expertise and critical thinking, interpretive and motivational skills, and evidence-based practice.

  • Selection criteria

    • have a four-year Bachelor’s degree in Nursing; or a Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing at HEQSF level 8 or have a qualification recognised by Senate as equivalent
    • be registered with the South African Nursing Council (SANC) as a nurse and/or midwife if the dissertation has a clinical component.
    • International applicants who wish to conduct research in South Africa that has a clinical component must register with the South African Nursing Council as a nurse and/or midwife
    • have an approved level of basic computer literacy
    • show evidence of English literacy.                                    
    • The application should indicate the research topic, purpose, design, scope, and research setting. The research topic should be within the research focus areas of the Division of Nursing & Midwifery
  • Alternative access through Recognition of prior learning (RPL)

    The University allows a limited number of applicants to be admitted via this alternative access route

    A registered nurse or midwife who does not meet the selection criteria may be considered for admission through recognition of prior learning. The following will be taken into consideration:

    • have a four-year diploma in Nursing and Midwifery (preference will be given to applicants who have achieved at least an average of 70% in the final-year courses)
    • submit for evaluation a full portfolio of prior learning, a curriculum vitae and supporting letters of reference
    • successfully complete a prerequisite learning course or courses before registering
    • have an approved level of basic computer literacy;  and
    • show evidence of English literacy
    • Notes
      •  may be required to undergo an interview with the programme convener
      • The application should indicate the research topic, purpose, design, scope, and research setting. The research topic should be within the research focus areas of the Division of Nursing & Midwifery.
  • Programme structure

    This 180 credit programme comprises coursework (courses must total a 90-credit weighting) plus a minor dissertation (90 credits) of a maximum of 25 000 words. Taught core courses to provide the candidate with a base for critically examining nursing practice by achieving a sound understanding of the principles and methods of research and professional issues. These courses are in Research Methods I and Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Practice. Elective courses reflect the interests and areas of practice of individual candidates. (Once an applicant is accepted onto the programme discussion will take place with the programme convenor and research supervisor to guide the choice of elective courses.)

  • Research focus areas

    The student will be assigned a research supervisor

  • Duration

    A minimum of two years full time registration or a maximum of four years.

  • Research setting

    • Research may be undertaken in South Africa or in the country of an international candidate.
    • If an international candidate wishes to conduct clinical research in South Africa, they will need to be registered as a nurse and/or midwife (as appropriate) with the South African Nursing Council.
  • Research approval

    • Research studies may not commence until the Faculty of Health Sciences Human Research Ethics Committee approval is granted, and the necessary permissions from research settings/institutions.

    In the case of international students, in addition to UCT research ethics approval, they will need to get research ethics approval from a local (in-country) higher education or research institution, as required by the country concerned