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Faculty Economic & Mgnt Sciences

Bloemfontein Campus
Bachelor of Commerce

South Campus
Higher Certificate in Economic and Management Sciences

Faculty of Natural & Agri Sciences

Bloemfontein Campus
BScIT Chemical & Physical Sciences
BSc Physics and Astrophysics
BSc Mathematics
BSc Geology, Geosciences
BSc Geography,Stats,Information
BSc Geography, Environmenta
BSc Building Sciences Open Learning
Bachelor of Sciences in Biological Sciences
Bachelor of Science majoring in Investment Sciences
Bachelor of Science majoring in Chemistry and Microbiology
Bachelor of Science in Statistics
Bachelor of Science in Agriculture
Bachelor of Agriculture in Agricultural Economics, Management
Bachelor of Agriculture

Qwaqwa Campus
BSc Biological Sciences
BSc Chemical Physical Sciences
BSc Geography
BSc Mathematics
BScIT Chemical Physical Sciences


Faculty of Education

Bloemfontein Campus
BEd Foundation Phase
BEd Intermediate Phase
BEd Senior and FET Phase

Qwaqwa Campus
BEd Foundation Phase
BEd Intermediate Phase
BEd Senior and FET Phase

Faculty of the Humanities

Bloemfontein Campus
Bachelor of Arts with specialisation in Languages


The University of the Free State is a multi campus public university in Bloemfontein, the capital of the Free State and the judicial capital of South Africa. It was first established as an institution of higher learning in 1904 as a tertiary section of Grey College. It was declared an independent Afrikaans-language university in 1950 and the name was changed to the University of the Orange Free State. The university has two satellite campuses. Initially a whites-only precinct, the university was fully de-segregated in 1996. The first black university vice-chancellor was appointed in 2010.


The main campus building
The university's Bloemfontein Campus is near the city centre. The university also has two satellite campuses. One is situated in Bloemfontein, referred to as South Campus, and the other in the former homeland QwaQwa that was, until 2003, part of the University of the North.

The university sports facilities cater for more than 20 sports, medical facilities and cultural activities, ranging from the political arena to outdoor life and the creative arts. It has a student centre, a student newspaper, the IRAWA and a campus radio station KovsieFm. In addition, students have access to a library, The Sasol Library, as well as the Frik Scott medical library, a career and guidance centre, a student theatre and a computer centre.

The long-held dream of an institution of higher education in the Free State became a reality in 1904 when the Grey College first accepted matriculants for a full B.A. course. In 1906 the tertiary part of Grey College became known as the Grey University College (GUC), but shortly thereafter the school and college parted ways. In 1910, the Parliament of the Orange River Colony passed legislation declaring the GUC an official educational institution in the fields of the Arts and Sciences.[5] In terms of the modern South African university system, the University of the Free State owes its formal emergence to the University of South Africa (UNISA), itself established as an autonomous university by legislation in 1916.[6] UNISA, at the time, was an "umbrella" or federal institution with its seat in Pretoria, playing an academic trusteeship role for several colleges that eventually became autonomous universities.[7] One of the colleges that were under UNISA's trusteeship was Grey University College, Bloemfontein. UNISA's trusteeship ended in 1949 when the Orange Free State University received a charter as a university.[8]

Initially, the medium of instruction was English, but later this changed to be bilingual and included Afrikaans. The name was changed to the University College of the Orange Free State—the Afrikaans version of this name change is the source of the word used to this day to refer to students of the university ("Kovsies"). In the late 1940s, the medium of instruction was changed to Afrikaans. The university was declared a full-fledged, independent university in 1950, and the name was again changed to the University of the Orange Free State.

In 1993, it adopted a system of parallel-medium tuition. However, the university decided to make English the primary medium of instruction in 2016. Subsequent to the adoption in 1999 of a new university statute, the UFS entered a significant growth period. Today, the University of the Free State boasts more students than ever in its history.

In February 2001, the university's name changed to the University of the Free State, which was adopted to reflect the real character of the institution and its environment. In 2004, the university celebrated its centenary.

Language policy
After the defeat of the Boers by the British in 1902 the Orange Free State became known as the Orange River Colony during which time the official language was changed from Dutch to English. Therefore, when the Grey University College was founded in 1904, the language medium was English. However, Dutch was one of the subjects taught at the college from the very beginning. Language activists in favor of Afrikaans made it possible for the language to be accepted as one of the subjects at the college as a "supplementary subject to Dutch" in 1919 when Afrikaans became a popular subject. In 1950 the University of the Orange Free State (UOFS) was established and the official medium language was Afrikaans.[9] The name of the university again changed in 2001 to the University of the Free State as it is known today.[10] Although a bilingual language policy (Afrikaans & English) were introduced since 1993 it was formalized in 2003. However, the university decided to make English the primary medium of instruction in 2016. This decision was jointly challenged by civil rights group AfriForum and Solidarity (South African trade union) but the decision to remove Afrikaans was upheld by the Constitutional Court of South Africa in 2017; when the judgment favored the university's new language policy which has been implemented since then


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