Psychology degree distance learning south africa

Deborah C. Escalante

A bachelor’s degree is a post-secondary degree awarded after completed 120 credits. It usually takes eight semesters to complete a Bachelor’s degree. While completing an undergraduate course, candidates have to study general courses and chose a major specific subject. A Bachelor’s degree can also be called a baccalaureate in certain countries.While distance learning courses have due dates th…Read more

A bachelor’s degree is a post-secondary degree awarded after completed 120 credits. It usually takes eight semesters to complete a Bachelor’s degree. While completing an undergraduate course, candidates have to study general courses and chose a major specific subject. A Bachelor’s degree can also be called a baccalaureate in certain countries.

While distance learning courses have due dates that must be met, there is a fabulous deal of compliance as to when you can carry out assignments when studying at a distance. With the online option, You could exit the discussion group as required to return to work and then join after work if needed. Distance learning courses can be taken in whatever place you have Internet access. You can even complete classes from the Internet lounge in any hotel around the world if you need a vacation.

A country situated to the southern tip of Africa, South Africa has a rich culture that you will never get enough of while touring or studying here. The languages here include Afrikaans and English, as well nine other official languages. The campus life of the vast South African University, University of Johannesburg or any other university will be mind blowing. You will love the tropical climate and interacting with other students from South African and from around the world

The Department of Psychology

Psychology image

Academic and professional-training programmes are offered. These provide students with: 

  • A


    good research




  • C

    ritical knowledge application 


  • F

    lexible skills development








These give an excellent grounding in psychology, and a degree of specialisation is catered for at the third-year level and above.  
















  • N





    and of


    an international




  • G

    eared towards developing reflective theorists and practitioners, who are sensitive to South African needs


  • P



    relevant and socially responsive


Pursuing a Career as a Psychologist


The minimum period of study required is six years. 




  • S

    tudy psychology for three years as an undergraduate


  • T

    ake a one-year full-time honours degree


  • E

    nrol for a specialised




    degree (clinical, community-counselling, industrial/organisational, research, educational)


The full period of study allows for registration with the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) as a psychologist.  

In the professional training programmes, the sixth year usually involves a fullyear internship and in some specializations, the HPCSA requires completion of a year of paid community service prior to registration as an independent practitioner. 

The profession is currently undergoing substantial change which means that requirements for registration as a psychologist may change. 

As an institution accredited to train counsellors and psychologists, the University will, if necessary, adapt its programmes to any future changes.  


Pursue the best online psychology courses in South Africa in 2022. Qualifications and fees differ with the program and institution, respectively. Additionally, online psychology courses improve one’s portfolio and chances of getting jobs.

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online psychology coursesAn online assessment exam paper on a laptop. Photo:, @mohamed_hassan
Source: UGC

Getting credible online psychology courses in South Africa is easy because more institutions now have them. Demand for these courses also keeps rising due to increased job opportunities. Phycologists are needed in almost all fields of work.

Top online psychology courses in South Africa

Psychology is the study of the mind, how it works, and how it affects an individual and society’s behaviour. Although there are many branches, the most popular online psychology courses accredited in South Africa include:

1. Counselling psychology

Counselling psychologists reduce psychological distress to promote the well-being of individuals, groups and families. Register for a counselling course at HUMANITAS for R18,999 to R21,999. The psychology requirements are:

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  • Senior Certificate or an equivalent NQF level 4

online psychology coursesA psychologist attending to a patient. Photo: @Sozavisimost
Source: UGC

2. Criminal psychology

Criminal psychology professionals are essential in many crime-detecting fields, from investigation to prosecutions. Meet these requirements to study online criminal psychology courses at UNISA (University of South Africa):

  • NQF Level 5 credits 12
  • NQF Level 6 credits 12
  • NQF Level 7 credits 12
  • NQF Level 8 credits 12

To register for UNISA’s online diploma or degree courses in criminology:

  • Go to the UNISA website.
  • Choose the qualification level and then click Go.
  • Enter your student number and the other required details. If you don’t have a student number, apply for admission online and pay an admission fee.
  • Provide correct contact details such as addresses, emails, and cellphone numbers. Incorrect information may delay the delivery of your study material and prevent you from receiving vital information from the university.
  • Click on the modules you want to register from the drop-down list. Ensure you meet all the qualification requirements for your selected modules.
  • Enter the module code and select the correct semester (1st or 2nd). The language of tuition for each module is indicated in the module information.
  • Do not exceed the prescribed number of modules per semester or year, as this might delay your registration. Unisa retains the right to remove modules based on the number of credits allowed per semester and the fees paid.
  • Note the maximum period you need to complete your qualification.
  • Calculate your fees using UNISA’s fee quotation link on its website and note the minimum fee you must pay for registration. Remove modules until you can afford the fees.
  • Make payments online using a credit card or at a First National Bank branch and retain your proof of payment in case of enquiries.
  • Submit your registration.

online psychology coursesAn overwhelmed black man discussing a problem with a female psychologist. Photo: @Alex Green
Source: UGC

3. Neuropsychology

Neuropsychology is a growing field in South Africa and internationally. Neuropsychologists research and treat nervous system disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, and traumatic brain injuries. To apply for an accredited online Neuropsychology course, you must have:

  • Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in neuropsychology
  • Completed HPCSA-approved internship.
  • Have five years of experience in the field of neuropsychology.
  • Have a state license.

Earn a Master’s degree in neuropsychology from UCT (University of Cape Town), then enrol for online training courses at NeuropsychologySA. It is recommended to contact the institution for more details regarding registration for upcoming training initiatives and fees.

4. Forensic psychology

A Bachelor’s in forensic psychology program takes 2-4 years. After this, you can work as a crime analyst, victim advocate, jury consultant, or police officer. You can also advance your studies by doing a Master’s degree in clinical psychology, specializing in forensic psychology.

Apply for forensic and correctional psychology short course at the University of Johannesburg. The 4-month program costs R6,000. Meet either of these requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent 3-year qualification.
  • Appropriate personal and/or work experience in either private, public, NPO, CBO or NGO environments working in criminal justice, prevention, reduction, and eradication.

online psychology coursesA psychologist talking to a client. Photo: @Sozavisimost
Source: UGC

5. Sports psychology

Sports psychology is an interesting and ever-evolving area. These professionals do not treat psychological disorders but help sportspeople improve their performance by helping them overcome mental obstacles. The requirement for this course at UNISA is:

  • A Senior Certificate or an equivalent NQF level 4

Trifocus Fitness Academy offers a 29-credit online sports psychology course, and you can start any time of the year. The 3-month course costs R8,250. Fill out the registration form on the institution’s website.

6. Military psychology

Military psychologists are also called clinical military psychologists. They provide counselling services and mental health treatment to active and retired armed forces and their families.

You must have a bachelor’s and doctoral degree in psychology and a state license to become a military psychologist. Therefore, take military psychology courses online at Stellenbosch university’s military academy.

You can also get an MA in Counseling online at Northwestern University after 18 months without a GMAT/GRE. Fill out the admission form provided on the school’s website.

7. Social psychology

Social psychologists research social interactions and the factors influencing them, such as group attitudes and behaviour, leadership, and public perceptions. You need these requirements to study social psychology at UNISA:

  • NQF Level 5 credits 12
  • NQF Level 6 credits 12
  • NQF Level 7 credits 12
  • NQF Level 8 credits 12

To apply for UNISA psychology courses online, follow the same procedure outlined under online criminal psychology courses. Meanwhile, you need a minimum of NQF level 7 to do an Advanced Diploma with a psychology major or Bachelor of Social Science Honours in Psychology modules online at SACAP. To apply:

  • Visit the SACAP website.
  • Click on start new application or find my application.
  • Fill in your details to register.
  • Fill in your details and submit.

online psychology coursesPeople in a psychotherapy session. Photo: @Antoni Shkraba
Source: UGC

8. Developmental psychology

UCT (University of Cape Town) also offers developmental psychology courses. Students are encouraged to sample as many of these areas during their undergraduate degrees as possible.

Make inquiries regarding admission and fees to the Department of Psychology via [email protected] or call +27 21 650-3417.

Can you do an online psychology course?

There are dozens of online bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral psychology programs. To study online psychology courses in South Africa, have the following things and let the institution determine whether you qualify or not:

  • A certified academic record and a certified copy of the highest level of education certificate.
  • A Senior Certificate or a National Senior Certificate that meets the institutions’ requirements.
  • Access to a good internet connection and a desktop/laptop.
  • Learners will need to have the learning software specified by different institutions.

Can you self study psychology?

Yes, you can study on your own using these tips:

  • Treat an online course like a real course.
  • Be accountable for your study time and performance.
  • Have a study space.
  • Eliminate distractions.
  • Keep your mind and body healthy.
  • Forge connections with your virtual learning community.

online psychology coursesA psychologist and a client drinking coffee. Photo: @olegsturm
Source: UGC

Where can I study psychology in South Africa?

Some of the psychology courses colleges include:

  • UNISA psychology courses list of programs offered online
  1. Bachelor of Arts (Health Sciences and Social Services) Psychological Counselling
  2. Bachelor of Arts (Health Sciences and Social Services): Community and Health Psychology
  3. Bachelor of Arts (Health Sciences and Social Services): Applied Psychology for Professional Contexts
  4. Bachelor of Arts Honours in Psychology: Applied Psychology for Professional Contexts
  5. Bachelor of Arts Honours in Psychology: Community and Health Psychology
  6. Bachelor of Arts Honours in Psychology: Psychological Counselling
  7. Bachelor of Commerce Honours in Industrial and Organisational Psychology
  8. Bachelor of Commerce in Industrial and Organisational Psychology (Extended Program)
  9. Bachelor of Commerce in Industrial and Organisational Psychology
  10. Bachelor of Science in Life Sciences: Psychology and Physiology Stream (with Genetics)
  • Ember Academy programs offered online
  1. Child Psychology Programme
  2. Child Psychology Comprehensive Course
  3. Child Psychology Proficiency Course
  4. Child Psychology Short Course
  • South African College Of Applied Psychology programs offered online
  1. Bachelor of Applied Social Science (Majoring in Psychology and Business Management)
  2. Bachelor of Applied Social Science (Majoring in Psychology and Human Resource Management)
  3. Bachelor of Applied Social Science (Majoring in Psychology and Counselling)
  • University of Cape Town programs offered online
  1. Social psychology
  2. Developmental psychology
  3. Clinical psychology
  4. Cognitive and Neuro-psychology
  5. Masters in Clinical Psychology
  6. Masters in Psychological Research
  7. Masters in Neuropsychology
  8. Masters in Social Science in Psychology
  9. PhD in Psychology

Which psychology degree is best?

No psychology course is better than the other. Your career preference or thirst for knowledge should matter the most.

online psychology coursesA counselling session for the military. Photo: @RODNAE Productions
Source: UGC

What are the best online psychology courses?

The most marketable ones are:

  • Forensic psychology
  • Criminal psychology
  • Child psychology
  • Clinical psychology
  • Military psychology
  • Sports psychology
  • Neuropsychology
  • Developmental psychology
  • Counselling psychology

How much do you pay to study psychology in South Africa?

Undergraduate psychology programs cost $2,500 (R37k) – $4,500 (R66k) while graduate programs cost $2,700 (R40K) – $3,000 (R45K). Additionally, some short courses cost as low as R,6000.

What requirements are needed to study psychology?

The requirements for psychology vary from one course to another, and institutions have different standards for admission.

Free online psychology courses in South Africa

Study these free online psychology courses in South Africa at the Alison website:

  • Child psychology
  • Basic horse care – equine psychology
  • Develop your emotional intelligence
  • Beating depression
  • Professional emotional coach
  • Neuro-linguistic programing

Free online psychology courses for beginners

Check out the following online psychology courses, free with a certificate:

online psychology coursesMan lying on a couch and a psychologist sitting on a chair. Photo: @Antoni Shkraba
Source: UGC

Free online psychology courses at Harvard

Harvard University has many free online psychology courses, including.

  • Introduction to Psychology
  • The Path to Happiness: What Chinese Philosophy Teaches Us about the Good Life
  • The Science of Corresponding with Busy People Webinar

Industrial psychology courses online

Alison has the following free industrial psychology courses for you:

  • An Introduction to Organizational Behaviour and Perception
  • Psychology – Development of Its Major Areas, Methods and Schools of Thought
  • Organizational Behaviour – Personality and Learning Theories
  • Organizational Behaviour – Understanding Attitude, Emotions and Motivation
  • Diploma in Organizational Behaviour

How long does it take to study psychology in South Africa?

The duration varies from three months to five years, depending on the individual’s courses. Some of the courses are short courses, while others are degree programs.

Distance learning universities in South Africa

The country has several schools offering distance learning programs. Some are:

  • The University of South Africa (UNISA)
  • STADIO Multiversity
  • Boston City Campus & Business College
  • South African College of Applied Psychology (SACAP)
  • Damelin Correspondence College
  • College SA
  • Oxbridge Academy
  • Lyceum Correspondence College

Taking online psychology courses in South Africa gives you the freedom to choose schedules that would suit you best. Whichever psychology course you choose, ensure that you meet the expected requirements.

READ ALSO: Real estate courses in South Africa: free, online and requirements also shared enlightening details about real estate courses in South Africa. These programs are perfect for everyone who wishes to work in this industry.

A real estate agent, broker, appraiser, or property manager should consider doing them. They will help you play a key role in expanding your knowledge in the real estate industry.

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