Call for applications: MPhil in Intellectual Disability

25 Jul 2019
25 Jul 2019



Division of Intellectual Disability

Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health University of Cape Town

Call for Applications 2020: Master of Philosophy in Intellectual Disability [Course code: MM006PRY06]

Please note: Application due date: 30 September 2019

The MPhil in Intellectual disability is an academic research degree which aims to build practitioner research capacity and to contribute to knowledge generation and translation in the field of intellectual disability in South Africa and Africa. Areas of particular interest include, but are not limited to advocacy and self-determination, community inclusion, evaluating and improving public service provision and promoting the health and mental health of people with Intellectual Disability and their supporters.

The degree does not lead to a professional qualification that can be registered with a professional body, but rather aims to enhance registered practitioners’ knowledge and research skills in the field of Intellectual Disability. Prospective students must therefore (a) have an approved degree in medicine; or (b) an approved master’s degree in psychology; or (c) an approved professional health degree (e.g. occupational therapy, physiotherapy, speech-language therapy, nursing, social work); and (d) be registered with the appropriate professional body as a practitioner.

The degree is offered as either a two year full-time or 3 year part-time research degree comprised of coursework and a dissertation:

Part 1: Course work (90 credits) is completed through experiential learning (on-site exposure in health facilities providing physical and mental healthcare services for persons with intellectual disability), monthly seminars, tutorials, case studies and academic presentations.

Part 2: A dissertation of no more than 25000 words (90 credits) is completed in the second year (full time) or over the second and third year (part-time). Research supervisors are jointly appointed mental health practitioners in the WC Department of Health and the Division of Intellectual Disability, Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health at UCT. Supervisors will offer supervision and support aimed at assisting students to master the research process (finalising their research proposals, gaining ethics approval for the research, gathering and analysing data for their research, writing up and submitting their dissertations). Students must have passed all the coursework requirements and a Part 1 examination before submitting their dissertations. The dissertation is examined according to the University’s regulations by two external examiners, of which one is drawn from an international academic institution.

Further details of the course and course assessments can be obtained from the UCT Health Sciences (postgraduate) Student Handbook at

Information on the fees for the degree is obtainable from the UCT fees page at .


Application process

Applications must be made online at

A guide for submitting your application is available at 

Please complete and upload the research concept note (MPHIL ID concept note 2020) and 2 referees reports with your application by 30 September 2019.

The postgraduate office can be contacted for further information about the application process at +27 21 406 6340 or 6028. 

Prof Sharon Kleintjes ( or 021 404 2166) can be contacted for queries related to the degree. Please copy Ms Nikita Titus at