Who is eligible for NAC bursary?

The National Arts Council of South Africa (NAC) was established by parliament in 1997. The NAC is mandated to encourage and provide opportunities to artists, allow historically disadvantaged individuals the opportunity to access the arts, promote the understanding and appreciation for art, allow all the right/ freedom to do art, promote art within various communities, promote national identity and consciousness through art, address the historical imbalance in the promotion of arts, and create a relationship on a national scale between individuals and art institutions.

The NAC’s vision is to be a front runner in the cultural, arts and creative community, actively supporting diverse and free creative expression. This is further supported by its mission to be an accessible and responsive funding agency, delivering value to the public by creating partnerships that promote the development/ sustainability of the creative sector.


The National Arts Council (NAC) is inviting students to apply for their International Bursary programme, for the 2023 academic year.

The International Bursary will be awarded for Undergraduate and Postgraduate studies towards an Arts qualification (including dance, craft, multidiscipline, literature, theatre, music, and visual arts)at any international tertiary institution outside of South Africa.

Through the bursary programme, the NAC hopes to increase the development of talented artists at various international institutions.


The bursary aims to provide cover for the following expenses: tuition fees and registration costs. In special cases, it may cover residence at relevant institutions or with experienced/ seasoned arts practitioners (all living costs will be determined by the NAC annually). Bursaries will be awarded to the maximum value of R250 000 per year.

The panel will allocate tuition cost funding relative to costs determined by the candidate’s chosen university. Should the student’s tuition fees be already covered by another source, the funding will be issued towards ancillary costs, such as books, accommodation, travel, and a subsistence allowance. This will be subject to the NAC’s written approval.

www.zabursaries.co.za is committed to keeping you up to date with the latest bursary opportunities, and this article covers all details about the NAC South Africa International Bursary.

The successful candidate will be chosen based on artistic merit, acceptance at the chosen institution, financial need, the status of the institution they have been accepted to, and the credibility of their chosen qualification.

Successful candidates will be notified by no later than 26 May 2023.


The grant will be renewable for the length of the students course and subject to the successful completion of each year of study. It is also the responsibility of the student to ensure that they adhere to all conditions of the grant.

Once the student has completed their studies, they will be required to share the skills they gained by assisting underprivileged organisations, groups, and/ or a specific individual in the community. Such services may include outreach programmes, workshops, admin support, mentoring, and capacity building. Proof of these services must be supplied to the NAC by the candidate and community leader(s)/ institution in the form of a written report and photographs.

Please note:

  • Successful students and a beneficiary will be required to sign an agreement with the NAC.
  • Students who are entering a two to three year degree will not need to reapply for funding and will be given a grant for the length of their studies. This is subject to the student successfully completing each year of studies.
  • The NAC reserves the right to terminate the agreement in the second semester/ year should the candidate not maintain satisfactory performance. This will be based on the written progress report provided by the student’s supervisor.



Applicants must satisfy the following minimum entry criteria before applying (please note that failure to satisfy all the requirements will lead to your application not being considered):

  • You must be a South African citizen
  • You must be registered for full-time undergraduate or postgraduate studies, within one of the Arts fields listed above
  • You must be registered or accepted to study at an international institution
  • You must have achieved a minimum overall average of 65% (students with an overall average of 63% may be considered in special cases)
  • Recognition of prior learning qualification may also be considered if the student is accepted by a sufficient and specific institution
  • You must maintain satisfactory progress
  • You must demonstrate artistic merit
  • You must be in financial need
  • Preference will be given to students from previously disadvantaged backgrounds