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We will be offering a six year MBChB degree. The full name for the MBChB degree is Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery.

The purpose of Nelson Mandela University’s MBChB programme will be to train caring, competent and committed primary health care oriented, medical doctors who will work as members of inter-professional teams, to practice in holistic, culturally sensitive and comprehensive ways.

Applications for the MBChB degree will only be opened once we have received accreditation from the regulatory professional body – the Health Professionals Council of South Africa (HPCSA) and approval from the Council for Higher Education (CHE). These endorsements have been delayed due to the occurrence of the COVID-19  pandemic. We are however still working towards welcoming our first intake of students in 2021.

The University’s formal application system is in place, thus as soon as the endorsements have been received, the public will be notified via our website, social media, radio, and newspaper channels.

In the interim, you may wish to consider applying for an alternative degree in the Faculty of Health Sciences.

Applications will only be opened once we have received accreditation from the regulatory professional body – the Health Professionals Council of South Africa, as well as approval from the Council for Higher Education and Training. We had hoped that this would be accomplished by mid-2019, but unfortunately there have been delays.

As soon as accreditation and approvals have been received, and applications are opened, then the public will be notified via our website, social media, radio, and newspaper channels.

The following National Senior Certificate (NSC) or equivalent subjects are required:

  • English (either as home language or first additional language) NSC minimum 60%.
  • Mathematics NSC minimum 60%.
  • Physical Science NSC minimum 60%.
  • Life Science NSC minimum 60%.

Please note that these subjects refer to the minimum requirements for degree entry and are not a guarantee for entrance into the programme.

You will need the following marks to be eligible to apply for the MBChB degree:

  • English (either as home language or first additional language) NSC minimum 60%.
  • Mathematics NSC minimum 60%.
  • Physical Science NSC minimum 60%.
  • Life Science NSC minimum 60%.

It is important to note that not everyone who applies with the minimum average will be given a place. An applicant requires a minimum Applicant Score (AS) of 430. The top applicants will be chosen according to academic merit with particular attention paid to top scholars who come from non-fee paying schools in order to promote access to the programme. Academic merit is calculated on the student’s school performance and results from the national benchmark test. See (v) above.

In the event of the applicant applying with Grade 11 final exam results as they are currently in Grade 12 then the above requirements also apply, and the applicant will need to maintain these marks in their NSC (or equivalent)

Final selection is conditional to submission of the applicants NSC certificate and achievement of the minimum requirements.

All applicants who are school leavers will need to write the National Benchmark Test (NBT). Currently we do not envisage that applicants who are enrolled in or have completed a degree will need to write the NBT.

The National Benchmark Tests comprise three multiple-choice tests, written as a combined Academic Literacy and Quantitative Literacy (AQL) test, and a separate Mathematics test. The AQL is a three-hour test that consists of an Academic Literacy (AL) section and a Quantitative Literacy (QL) section. The results of the two sections of the test are recorded separately. The second test is Mathematics (MAT), which is also multiple-choice and three hours in duration.

This will contribute to determining the academic merit of the students.

  • Your Applicant Score (AS) is calculated using six subjects. Please note that Life Orientation (LO) is excluded
  • Write down your subjects and the most recent percentage (%) obtained in each subject (NO Gr 12 March results).
  • You MUST include the results for the following three compulsory subjects: 1) Home language; 2) 1st Add. Language; and 3) Maths

In addition, for those applicants from quintile 1 to 3 schools who attain 50% or higher for Life Orientation, 7 additional points are added to their score out of 600 to arrive at their final AS.

The table below provides an example of how to calculate the AS for:

  • An applicant who has 7 NSC/IEB subjects:

 

NSC Subjects % obtained % used to calculate the AS
isiXhosa (Home Language) 78 78
English (1st Add. Language) 65 65
Mathematics 74 74
Physical Sciences 75 75
Life Orientation 85 -
Life Sciences 74 74
Business Studies 85 85
Applicant Score (AS): - 451
NBT’s must be written by the end of June so that the results are available by the end of July in order to be considered for selection to the MBChB Programme.

The NBT results contribute 40% of the final Applicant Score, while your Grade 11 or NSC marks contribute 60% of the final Applicant Score.

Yes, but please note that preference will be given to applicants who meet the minimum NSC criteria for entry into the programme.   Additionally, consideration will be given to students who had attended non-fee paying schools as well as those applicants who are enrolled at Nelson Mandela University in the Faculties of Health Sciences, and Science. Applicants will be evaluated on their university academic record.

Students who are in their first year of study must use their NSC marks and NBT’s to apply.

Yes, but please note that preference will be given to applicants who meet the minimum NSC criteria for entry into the programme. Additionally, consideration will be given to students who had attended non-fee paying schools as well as those with a degree from the Health Sciences, or Science faculties.

Applicants will be evaluated on their university academic record.

South African nationals who have pre university studies from outside the Republic of South Africa will be considered. No international applicants will be considered at this stage.

After obtaining the degree, graduates must successfully complete the prescribed period of internship and community service before they may register as an independent Medical Practitioner with the Health Professions Council of South Africa and be permitted to work independently in the public or private sectors.

No on-campus accommodation is currently available on the Missionvale Campus of Nelson Mandela University.  Students may be accommodated at one of the Summerstrand campuses.

A shuttle service is available for transporting students from North Campus to Missionvale Campus and back every day.  Dedicated transport will be provided from the Faculty of Health Sciences when you work at the different hospitals in Port Elizabeth (and surrounds) in years four to six.

In planning your budget for your studies, the following costs need to be considered:

  • HPCSA fees – registration as a MBChB student
  • Computer to access e-assessments, Moodle System and textbooks
  • Vaccinations
  • Uniforms (White coat, scrubs, T-Shirts) as needed
  • Equipment costs (e.g. stethoscope)
  • Transport
These costs will be factored into your total student fees

The MBChB degree is a six-year degree. The first three years concentrate on the Basic Medical Sciences, as well as laying the foundations for public and primary health care. Students will be taught on the Missionvale Campus, and will also complete community-based placements in underserved areas within Nelson Mandela Bay. The fourth and fifth years have a more clinical focus and students will rotate through different clinical disciplines in Dora Nginza, Livingstone, PE Provincial, Elizabeth Donkin and Uitenhage hospitals as well as spending time in district hospitals and community health centres and clinics. The sixth year is known as a student intern year. Students will spend six months in a district hospital in the Eastern Cape, and six months rotating through clinical disciplines in the Port Elizabeth hospital complex.

The first three years concentrate on the Basic Medical Sciences, including subjects such as Chemistry and Physics, Medical Biochemistry, Anatomy, Physiology, Pharmacology, and Integrated Pathology. In addition, contextual skills such as Languages, Communication, Professionalism, and Public Health are taught in both a theoretical and practical manner by being centered on community-based placements. Clinical skills are also taught.

In years four to six, students rotate through the clinical disciplines of Internal Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Paediatrics, General Surgery and Urology, Psychiatry, Family Medicine, and clinical specialities including Ophthalmology, Otolaryngology, Emergency Medical Care, Orthopaedics, Radiography and Anaesthetics.

The curriculum has been submitted to the Department of Higher Education’s, Council for Medical Education. We are still awaiting final feedback.

In many ways, the degree we are offering is similar to other South African medical degrees. It is a six-year degree that will produce a graduate who fulfills the HPCSA graduate attributes and who, on qualification, is competent to work as an intern in a South African hospital. However, in addition to this, we plan to train students in an interprofessional manner so that they have trained and worked alongside other healthcare professionals. We strive to focus on preventive and promotive health care in addition to curative and rehabilitative care. We aim to produce a fit-for-purpose graduate who can contribute to the Eastern Cape and South Africa's priority health care needs.

Traditionally, the training of medical practitioners has embraced the notion of curative health, to help people suffering from disease or injury. However, a central role of health professionals is to maintain health and prevent disease. The preventive approach is research-driven and forms part of public health care, which is evidence-based, practical and astute. Therefore, to develop the capacity of medical doctors, South Africa needs to train them in preventive and promotive medicine – or in other words primary or basic health care. Mandela University plans to pay special attention to this and to bring a strong Primary Healthcare focus into its curriculum.

In the first three years, the teaching will be mainly at the Missionvale Campus, with some community-based teaching as well. In the last three years, students will be taught by clinicians working in the hospitals, health centres and clinics in Nelson Mandela Bay, as well as further afield in district hospitals in towns such as Humansdorp, Graaf Reinet and Grahamstown.

How is the curriculum structured?

The first intake will admit 50 students, but this figure will increase annually over the first three years and reviewed thereafter.

In each year, all modules need to be passed in order to be able to progress to the next year. In the first year, there are three modules that run throughout the whole year. They are Academic Literacy and Reasoning, Basic Medical Science, and Theory & Practice of Medicine.

Yes. A first-year module called Academic Literacy and Reasoning will help provide skills so that students can master the academic content of their work. In addition, an academic advisor will be made available to students so that financial, psychological or academic needs can be addressed, or channelled appropriately.

The first three years will be based at the Missionvale Campus, on the Uitenhage Road.

The second three years will see some teaching taking place at the Missionvale Campus, however, the majority of the time will be spent in the health care facilities of Nelson Mandela Bay, such as Dora Nginza Hospital.  In addition, students will spend six months in their final year in a district hospital in the Eastern Cape

In line with a vision to train primary healthcare oriented, socially accountable graduates, comes the opportunity to train at the Missionvale Campus. The campus is situated in an under-resourced area and students can learn - from the communities that surround them - the very real health care needs of the majority of South Africans. The campus is also situated opposite Dora Nginza Hospital where students will train, especially in the final three years of the degree.

Various lecture halls and laboratory facilities have been  refurbished on the Missionvale Campus to meet the required needs for teaching.

The facilities include, but are not restricted to: A clinical skills and simulation unit, a basic science laboratory, an anatomy and physiology laboratory, multi-purpose teaching venues, lecture halls and an iLearning area.

The programme will embrace technology in order to enhance teaching and learning. The University will be the first in the country to use Anatomage tables for virtual dissection, as part of a mixed methods teaching approach for anatomy. In addition, specialised technology is being procured for physiology practicals. A state-of-the-art clinical skills laboratory is being designed and equipped to teach clinical skills in which a digital platform known as Body Interact where Interprofessional Case-Based learning can take place will also be housed. The use of online learning resources will be encouraged.