BScAgric (Applied Plant and Soil Sciences)

Programme Code: 03130162

Note: The information, prices and requirements of the programmes listed may undergo changes and are guidelines only.


The Department of Plant Production and Soil Science specialises in the following disciplines: agronomy, horticultural science, pasture science, soil science and forestry. These disciplines are at present complemented by 13 academics, two emeritus professors, two honorary professors, four extraordinary professors and 11 support staff members. The diverse disciplines and the strong complement of academics attract many postgraduate students locally and from the rest of Africa. The highly qualified academics also attract substantial external project funding to the Department.


Apart from the laboratories on Campus, the Department also has a ‘living laboratory’ in the middle of Pretoria, namely the Hatfield Experimental Farm. The experienced technical staff at the experimental farm ensure the smooth running of the research that is undertaken at this facility. The Department of Plant Production and Soil Science focuses on educating and training students on conducting research that will contribute to improved food security and reduce negative impacts on the environment.

More programme information

Careers: Education and training at schools and academic institutions. Research and management at various public and private institutions.

Public sector: The ARC, Department of Water and Environmental Affairs, Department of Tourism, Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Department of Mineral Resources, Department of Energy, the CSIR, provincial agriculture and nature conservation departments, the South African National Biodiversity Institute, municipalities, South African National Parks, national farming and food production agencies, etc.

Private sector: Companies involved in seed, fertilizer and plant protection research and development, environmental planning and management, nurseries, vegetable, fruit and ornamental cut flower production, irrigation, etc.

Extension services involving knowledge transfer: Nature conservation, national and provincial departments of agriculture and the environment, environmental management and rehabilitation, nurseries, crop, turf grass and weed management, private companies servicing field crops, vegetables, medicinal and aromatic plants, fruit, ornamental and cut flower production, etc.

Entrepreneurial: Consultants in crop, pasture, vegetable, medicinal and aromatic plants, ornamental and cut-flower production systems and landscaping enterprises. Management of own farms and nurseries for extensive (field) or intensive (tunnel/greenhouse) production systems involving various crops. Managing companies specialising in irrigation, reclamation and soil conservation.

Academic unit

Faculty: Natural and Agricultural Sciences

Closing dates for application

SA : 30 September 2013
Non-SA : 31 August 2013

Estimated cost

R34 890 - R38 379

Course contact

  • Name: Client Service Centre
    Tel: 012 420 3111

Additional curriculum information

The following postgraduate degrees are also available:
• PhD (Agronomy) (Horticulture, Pasture Science, Soil Science, Forestry Science)
• MScAgric (Agronomy) (Horticulture, Pasture Science, Soil Science)
• BInstAgrarHons (Plant Production)
• MInstAgrar (Agronomy, Horticulture, Pasture Science)
• BScHons (Environmental Soil Science)
• MSc (Environmental Soil Science)
• MSc (Forestry Management and the Environment) (lectured programme)
• MSc (Forestry) (interdepartmental programme)

The research component of postgraduate study focuses on five main scientific disciplines: agronomy, horticulture, pasture science, soil science and forestry.

Admission requirements

A National Senior Certificate and complying with the minimum requirements for degree studies. 


Minimum requirements
Achievement level
Afrikaans or English
Physical Science
or 4 (provided 5 is obtained for Physical Science)
or 4 (provided 5 is obtained for Mathematics)


Candidates who do not comply with the minimum admission requirements may be considered for admission to the BScAgric or the BSc (Four-year programme) based on the results of the NBT. Please note that students who are placed in the BSc (Four-year programme) will take a minimum of five years to complete the BScAgric programme.

Duration of study

4 years

Main curriculum information

The same study programmes are prescribed for all undergraduate students in BScAgric (Applied Plant and Soil Sciences) in order to ensure exposure to agronomy, horticultural science, pasture science, soil science and forestry. This gives students who enter the job market a wide range of career options and provides those who wish to continue with postgraduate studies the opportunity to make informed career decisions on future specialisation.