Study Abroad at the University of the Western Cape with Arcadia University

University of the Western Cape
Preliminary Course Instructions

The Course Selection Process

In order to proceed with your application at the University of the Western Cape (UWC), you will need to propose a preliminary course schedule for your semester. Your course selections should be made in consultation with your academic advisor. If you have not previously done so, please meet with your academic advisor to ensure that the courses that you plan to take overseas will transfer back to your degree program.

In addition to your proposed primary course selections, you should choose a series of alternate courses. Your first choice selections may not be available due to scheduling changes, time conflicts, prerequisites or cancellations. Your flexibility is very important to the process. Therefore, please indicate a total of 7-9 courses that suit your academic needs.

If your enrollment is conditional upon entry into a specific course or courses, it is very important that you indicate these requirements at the bottom of the course selection form. While every effort will be made to accommodate your selections, Arcadia University cannot guarantee placement in any specific course.

Official course registration will take place once you have arrived on campus at UWC. You will be able to make changes to your course selections up until the point of registration.


Core Seminar

In addition to your coursework at the university, all students are required to participate in a 3-credit core seminar, "Introducing South Africa: History, Politics and Culture," which is intended to provide a forum for reflection and analysis on current issues and challenges facing South Africans.


Selecting Courses at UWC

When selecting your courses from the overseas university’s website, you should be aware of some differences in terminology. In South Africa, the largest academic unit, typically referred to as a school or college at a US university, is the faculty. Departments are arranged within faculties. At the link above, you'll find lists of both. Click on individual departments for information about courses available within each one. Keep in mind that the university system in South Africa is a 3-year system, so level 1 courses are introductory and level 3 courses are final year classes. 

Important note: Course availability at UWC varies widely. As such, it is likely that you will only be able to indicate very generally what courses you would like to take at UWC. If you run into difficulty, please do not hesitate to contact your Program Manager for additional advice and assistance. Final course registration does not take place until orientation at UWC.



Students must maintain a full-time course load throughout their period of study in South Africa. A full-time course load is defined by Arcadia University as 14-16 U.S. semester hours of credit, which is typically equivalent to 4 or 5 courses at UWC in addition to the required 3-credit Arcadia core seminar.

Credits for UWC’s classes are calculated as follows:

10 credit UWC courses = 3 U.S. credits
15 credit UWC courses = 4 U.S. credits

Pending that prerequisites are met, international students are permitted to take UWC Honors Level Courses and Master’s level courses taught in the Institute for Social Development. It is recommended that these 20-24 credit classes be translated into 6 U.S. academic credits each.



For assistance with any part of the application process, please your Program Manager, Chris Callas, at
Please review your course choices with your academic or study abroad advisor, and submit the online course registration form on your Arcadia Passport.