Matric Exemption

Matric Exemption or passing with a bachelors is the highest level of achievement for any matriculant. Yet so many fall short of this by either poor subject choices or bad results.

We covered matric subject choices and what you marks you need before but we thought another post giving tips on how to achieve an exemption would be helpful.

Who needs a Matric Exemption?

If you plan to study any degree level course at any South African University then you need an exemption. The Department of Education  has actually made the wording self explanatory with bachelors, diploma and certificate being the three pass levels.

What if I don’t pass with a Bachelors but want to study at a University?

You have the following options……

  • Bridging Courses – Most universities will have a bridging course for students that fall short of the mark. These vary in length but generally will not be longer than a year. Please also note that it is still the University’s decision to accept you for a bridging course so your marks must be above average.
  • Matric Rewrites (Supplementary Exam) –  Rewrites are granted to students that have just fallen below the pass mark for a subject. These are granted by the Department of Education and again there are no guarantees. They will look at your final mark but also at your portfolio work, so taking it easy throughout the year will not help your application.
  • Redo Matric Subjects – Many private schools and institutions will allow you to register to improve a few subjects. This however will be a full year of study but it can be done part time.

Exemption Pass Rates

Exemption pass rates have just creeped over the 25% mark in the last year.

26.6% of all matriculants last year passed with an exemption, that is one in four. So out of the 511 152 matriculants that wrote their matric finals last year only 136 047 made the initial cut for University.

It must be noted that the pass rate for university entrance has never been this high.

Top Tips to Ace your Exams

  1. Be Positive

This alone is priceless and timeless. You need to be positive to achieve anything worthwhile in life.

Even if you have no reason to be positive about your situation


You will study harder, remember more, sleep better and ultimately achieve more.

2. Teach

Yes even you can teach 🙂

Explaining something to someone is the fastest method to master what you need to learn. So have a study group with a few friends and take turns explaining concepts to each other. This is pure gold.

3. Organize

Remember that project that’s due for tomorrow?

Remember how you put it off day after day?

Remember not studying for that class test?

Disorganization can lead to a matric nightmare, stomach cramps, instant headaches and depression.


Run a tight shift and own it.


Exemptions aren’t for everyone. Many successful individuals have achieved great things without a matric. So don’t stress yourself if you don’t get one but do try.

There are other things in life such as passion, commitment and diligent work which are just as important as a piece of paper that will eventually fade away…….

One reply on “Matric Exemption”

i have level 3 of english that disadvantages me to study at university.i have physical sciences at 62% and maths 56% also life sciences 61%.i regret what i have done becouse my nsc is useless for me

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