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Pharmacy Undergraduate Admission Requirements

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Undergraduate Applications and Admissions

Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University (SMU) offers students opportunities to undergo training in the health sciences. Selection is competitive and is based on academic performance and the university ensures that selected students have the ability/potential to complete their studies in the requisite minimum time. SMU also prioritise transformation and endeavours to attract talented students from all demographic groupings in South Africa and a few from Southern African Development Community (SADC).

The University reserves the right not to offer a particular module or course where the prescribed minimum number of students has not registered for the module or course and/or programme or qualification in question. The General Rules and admission requirements of the University are as approved by the University Council. However, these rules and admission requirements are subject to amendments approved after the date of publication.

General Information



Minimum Admission Requirements

1.1.1 National Senior Certificate Applicants

National Senior Certificate (NSC) applicants require the following minimum Admission Point Score (APS) as indicated in Table 1.

The APS for the candidate will be calculated by using the APS grade in Table 2. The candidates will be ranked according their APS.

Table 1 Minimum APS score

Subject Grade
Life Sciences 5
Mathematics 5
Physical Sciences 5
English 5
Life Orientation 4
Two additional subjects: preferably Accounting & Economics 4 (each)
Total points required (minimum) 32

Table 2. APS points per percentage

APS % APS Points
90 – 100% 8
80 – 89% 7
70 – 79% 6
60 – 69% 5
50 – 59% 4

1.1.2 Applicants who left school prior to 2008 (prior to National Senior Certificate)

  • Candidates who are in possession of a Matriculation Certificate of the Matriculation Board OR Certificate of Exemption from the Matriculation Examination granted by the Matriculation Board/HESA (Higher Education South Africa, now called USAf (Universities South Africa) with University Exemption must have passed Mathematics and at least two of the following subjects in higher grade (with a minimum symbol D) at matric level: English, Biology, Physiology or Physical Science (Table 3).
  • Candidates with Mathematics in the standard grade level who have achieved an A or B rating may be considered

Table 3

Symbol Higher Grade (HG) Standard Grade (SG) %
A 8 6 80% +
B 7 5 70-79
C 6   60-69
D 5   50-59

1.1.3 Non-South African should obtain the following:

  • A-Levels in the following subjects: mathematics, physical science, biology and English
  • A Matriculation exemption certificate from the South African Matriculation Board/ Universities South Africa (USAf).

1.1.4 Other Age applicants

Applicants without university exemption who have completed appropriate training within the requirements of the National Qualifications Framework will be considered (e.g. formally trained Post Basic pharmacist assistants, pharmacy technicians) provided that they are in possession of a matriculation certificate with the following subjects: Mathematics, Life Sciences, Physical Sciences and English with a minimum APS level of 5 per subject.

1.1.5 Graduates

  • Graduates with Health Sciences/BSc degrees will be considered only for enrolment into First Year. Graduates with degrees will be given preference over those with diplomas due to the higher National Qualifications Framework (NQF) ranking for a degree
  • Marks obtained during the degree will be scored according to Table 4 below:
Percentage obtained POINTS
≥75 24
70-74 16
65-69 12
60-64 8
55-59 4
≤54 0

Table 4

  • Points are allocated according to the above table to all The points will be summed and divided by the number of courses.
  • Candidates with a total of 12 points qualify for selection
  • Selection is on a competitive basis and a student’s average should be 65% in the final
  • The time to complete the degree is also taken into account. A three or four year Health Sciences/BSc completed in the minimum time: two additional credits (+2)
  • Honours Degree: one additional credit if achieved in minimum time (+1).
  • Master’s Degree: one additional credit if achieved in minimum time (+1)

1.1.6 Transfers from SMU and/or other universities

  • Applicants with incomplete Health Sciences/BSc degrees will be considered only for enrollment into First Year. Preference will be given to applicants in the final year of their studies.
  • Selection is on a competitive basis and a student’s average mark should be 65% and above including Matric (Grade 12)
  • Each application will be considered by the Selection Committee and ranked based on their academic outcomes
  • Students with degrees or studying for degrees will be given preference over those with diplomas due to the higher NQF ranking for a degree

1.1.7 Selection Process

The B Pharm Selection Committee will screen all candidates who comply with the selection requirements. The candidates will be informed of the outcome of the selection process by the Office of the Registrar.

Successful applicants will be admitted into first year level

General information for registration with the South African Pharmacy Council (SAPC): All students admitted to the first year of study must register with the SAPC before 31 March of the relevant year. Please contact the School of Pharmacy for further information.