Study Abroad

CIEE Cape Town: Arts and Sciences

  • Location: Cape Town, South Africa
  • Minimum GPA: 3.0
  • Language of Instruction: English
  • Class Eligibility: Juniors


COVID-19 Protocols and Travel Warnings

  • You can read about this program’s COVID-19 safety protocols at this link and this link, then read the CDC Travel Warning and U.S. State Department Travel Advisory at the respective links. For more information about Haverford College Study Abroad and the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak, read the Study Abroad homepage here.
  • CIEE requires all study abroad students to be fully vaccinated before they can participate in any CIEE program. 

Cape Town is the third most populous city in South Africa. It is the legislative capital of the country, as well as capital of the Western Cape province. Cape Town is famous for its natural harbor, as well as its location near the Cape of Good Hope. It receives the largest number of tourists of any South African city, making it also the capital of the tourism industry. The area is also famous for its unique plant life and winemaking.

The University of Cape Town was founded in 1829, and is South Africa’s oldest university. It has established itself as one of Africa’s finest teaching and research institutions. The campus is on a beautiful hillside setting on the outskirts of the city, close to residential areas, shops, and cafes. UCT is a university, which prides itself on not only its undergraduate education, but also on its graduate programs and the excellent research carried out by its faculty. During the period of apartheid, UCT was designated as a ‘whites only’ institution. However, today’s campus has been transformed to reflect the diversity of the entire South African population in terms of students, faculty and staff. About 50% of the 20,000 students are black, and half of the student body is female. The faculty hails from over 90 different countries.


CIEE Study Center applicants are required to complete a University of Cape Town (UCT) application, provided by CIEE.

Academic Credit

A full course load is considered 3–4 courses. A typical combination of courses includes two courses at the 200-level, and one or two courses at the 300-level. Students requesting major credit in any subject should take courses at the 200 or 300 level. Total recommended credit for the semester is 15–18 credits per semester. Of these credits, all SIT Serbia, Bosnia and Kosovo students are required to take a 3 credit Serbian language course (different levels). This is equivalent to four Haverford credits.

  • Courses at the 300-level have 60 contact hours and recommended credit is 6 semester;
  • Courses at the 200-level have 60 contact hours and recommended credit is 4 semester;
  • Courses at the 100-level have 45 contact hours and recommended credit is 3 semester.

Major, minor, and concentration transfer credit will only be granted for courses in which students received a grade of a C or above.


Wide range of course offerings at the University of Cape Town in commerce, engineering, humanities, and science. Community service and involvement through a township homestay, CIEE and UCT community service programs, and independent study opportunities Opportunity to live, interact with, and study alongside African students in a society in transition. Cultural and educational activities such as visits to local theater, music, and dance productions, museums, rural cooperatives, cricket and rugby matches, and whale-watching. Excursions to various sites of cultural importance in Cape Town and in the Western Cape such as the Cape Peninsula, the Cape Flats, Robben Island, and wine farms

Course Highlights

African Studies, Archaeology, Architecture and Planning, Art, Art History, Biology, Chemistry, Cities, Computer Science, Drama, Economics, Engineering & Technology, Environmental Studies, Fine Arts, Gender Studies, Geography, History, Management, Mathematics, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Religion, Sociology, Theology, Urban Studies

Note: Changes occur frequently. Students are responsible for finding the classes they need and consulting the official site of the institution.

Review the Full Academic Requirements for Studying Abroad


Both UCT and CIEE conduct mandatory orientations for international students to introduce them to life in South Africa, academic expectation, culture, and campus facilities.

Number of Students

120-220 each semester.

Housing/Meal Plans

Haverford students have two housing options with this program. They may opt to live in a homestay with a South African family, in which all meals are included. Families live throughout the Cape Town area, and students take public transportation to and from the Global Institute (CIEE’s campus). Haverford believes that living with a family provides the best opportunity to learn a language and experience full cultural immersion.

Additionally, students may live in shared apartments (not residence halls), where they live alongside other CIEE students and Resident Assistants (RAs). There is a combination of both single and double rooms within the apartments. These are allocated randomly. Students share kitchen and other facilities with five to 10 students. All residents of the apartments share basic cleaning duties. Students living in the shared apartments are responsible for all meals. They can prepare their own meals at their hall or apartment, or eat on or off campus.

Haverford students may not opt for independent off-campus housing – that is, housing not arranged by the program.


Students who are applying to study in South Africa must have both parents sign the Parent Waiver on the Travel Resources website.  We also strongly suggest that parents of students studying abroad, especially in South Africa, also have valid passports.

Gain Travel Grant – The CIEE Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grant helps cover airfare to and from CIEE program locations for students who demonstrate financial need. Pell-eligible students are guaranteed a GAIN Grant if they submit their CIEE scholarships application by October 15 for spring programs, or by April 1 for fall programs. GAIN Grants are available on a first-come first-served basis to students with a wider range of need. Students can be awarded $750-$2,000 toward airfare. The award amount depends on CIEE program location.

Apply to Study Abroad!

  • PDF
  • Program List


  • Semester/Year
  • Science/Math/Pre-Health/CompSci Approved


  • Semester I: Early July to mid-November
  • Semester II: Late January to mid-June

Application Deadlines

  • Semester I: March 1
  • Semester II: September 15

Faculty Contact