Private colleges in the TVET sector

There are many private colleges that offer similar courses to public TVET colleges.
Here are guidelines on how to choose a reputable private college.

How do I choose a reputable private college?

Before enrolling in a private college, it is important to make sure that it meets the legal requirements for private institutions and to determine whether the college provides quality programmes that are valued in the market place.

Before you register or pay any fees, follow the steps below to avoid enrolling in a ‘fly-by-night’ institution that will not give value for money.

  1. Check that the college is registered with the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) on the DHET list of registered private colleges in the TVET sector: Private colleges must be registered with the DHET in terms of the Continuing Education and Training Act 16 of 2006 and the FET Colleges Amendment Act of 2013. The DHET regularly updates the Register of Registered Private Colleges that is available on its website. The register includes information on the registration status of private colleges, qualifications that they are approved to offer and their NQF Levels, as well as the contact details of the colleges. There is a danger that qualifications from unregistered colleges will not be recognised by DHET or employers. Don’t just believe the institution if it says that it is registered, check its registration status.
  2. Check that the college is accredited by Umalusi by viewing the list on the Umalusi website The accreditation is closely linked to and dependent on the DHET registration. Accreditation is part of the quality assurance process that confirms the quality of the specific qualifications delivered by the private college.
  3. It is also useful to find additional information such as how long the institution has been in business and whether it has received negative publicity. If possible, speak to someone who recently completed the qualification you want to enrol for at the institution to find out about the quality of delivery and whether the qualification was valued by employers.
  4. If you still have questions, call the DHET TVET College Helpline on 0800 872 2222.