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Occupational Qualification Hairdresser


The South African Hairdressing Industry is a significant contributor to the nation's economy, with an estimated worth exceeding R24.8 billion. Recognising the sector's potential for job creation and economic empowerment, particularly among youth and those in rural areas and townships, the Minister of Higher Education and Training (DHET) has introduced a comprehensive, fully funded program as part of the Technical and Vocational Education and Training College (TVET) initiative.

Commencing on January 1, 2024, this program offers aspiring individuals the opportunity to enrol in the Occupational Qualification for Hairdressing at accredited Skills Development Providers, specifically TVET Colleges across South Africa. The program is designed as a three-year qualification, encompassing theoretical knowledge, practical skills, and real-world work experience.

To ensure a well-rounded educational experience, TVET colleges will collaborate with approved employers who have received workplace endorsement from the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO). Learners will spend a minimum of two days per week gaining practical experience in the workplace. Upon achieving the required level of competence, learners will be eligible to undertake a trade test known as the External Integrated Summative Assessment (EISA), thereby qualifying as certified hairdressers.

Financial support for this program will be facilitated through the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS). Prospective learners are encouraged to reach out to accredited Skills Development Providers to inquire about enrolment and funding application procedures.

Participants in the program will receive the essential equipment necessary to complete their qualification. Furthermore, upon becoming certified hairdressers, they will receive the requisite resources to launch their careers or establish their own businesses within the industry. Part of the curriculum also focuses on nurturing skills related to entrepreneurship and customer service.

In an effort to maintain the high standards of training, accredited TVET colleges will receive funding to update equipment in their training salons. This ensures that the training facilities are consistently well-maintained and fully operational while learners undergo practical training.

The program extends its reach by offering six additional Skills programs derived from the Occupational Qualification Hairdresser. These include Barber, Chemical Hair Reformation Attendant, Hair and Scalp Treatment Attendant, Hair Colouring Attendant, Hair Cutting Attendant, and Hairstylist.

As of January 2024, 17 colleges, located at 19 sites spanning all nine provinces, have received full accreditation from the QCTO to offer this qualification. For more information about these accredited providers, please contact the EOHCB via Additionally, 32 other colleges are in the process of acquiring accreditation and plan to offer this qualification starting in January 2025.


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