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Human Development &
Capability Association

Multi-Disciplinary and People-Centred


CALL OPEN (closing date 30 August 2023)

BACKGROUND The SARChI Chair in Higher Education and Human Development Research Programme (HEHD) at the University of the Free State (UFS) invites applications from qualified, motivated and talented candidates for doctoral scholarships. In HEHD we conduct theoretical and empirical research into human development applied to the challenges of social justice in higher education and development, in collaboration with international partners. Under the leadership of Professor Melanie Walker, SARChI Chair in Higher Education and Human Development, HEHD undertakes a suite of mixed methods research projects and graduate research. Ideally, Doctoral Research Fellows will have an interest and expertise at Masters or Honours level in education and development, youth studies, development studies, higher education studies or related fields such as philosophy, politics, and sociology. The scholarship is available for three-years, subject to satisfactory performance for the title registration of the fellow’s doctoral study.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA The Fellowship is open to all South African and international applicants for full-time research at the UFS. Prospective fellows must meet the following criteria: 1) Have a Master’s degree in a relevant discipline obtained within the last five years with a minimum average grade of 70%. 2) Be able to relocate to the UFS for the duration of the fellowship. 3) Not hold full-time salaried employment during the fellowship. The successful candidate will be required to: 1) Conduct doctoral research on human development and higher education. 2) Register and reside as a full-time Doctoral Research Fellow at the UFS 3) Participate in and contribute to relevant HEHD and Centre for Development Support research activities.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE To apply, please email the following documents to Dr Mikateko Mathebula ( and include 'HEHD Doctoral Fellowship_full-time' in the subject line:

1.Motivation letter with clear explanation for interest in pursuing a PhD

2.A 6-10 page research proposal including aim, research questions, a preliminary literature review, and methodology.

3.CV including any research publications, conference papers presented and grants awarded.

4.All transcripts of academic record, a copy of Masters dissertation, and copy of degree certificate (with SAQA verification for all non-South African degrees/qualifications).

5.Copy of ID document (or copy of passport in the case of international applicants).

6.Reference letter from two academic referees who have taught/supervised/mentored the candidate.


R 180,000 annual fellowship paid as a monthly stipend (which includes R 30,000 for research expenses). Note that registration fees are deducted annually.

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