About the programme

The Master of Commerce specialising in Taxation in the field of South African Income Tax [CM031FTX10] aims to equip successful candidates with the knowledge and skills to be well rounded, competent practitioners in the tax field; to assess the tax efficiency of commercial transactions; to conduct research; to draft legally based opinions; to deal with SARS on behalf of clients; and, to prepare for tax litigation. The programme is designed to complement practical tax experience gained by working tax practitioners and is aimed at students already working in a tax environment. The programme is offered over two years, part-time.

Year 1

Facilitated group discussions are held on tax law including relevant legislation, and South African and other court decisions.  The sessions are aimed at developing a participant’s ability to interpret and apply the law practically. There will be prescribed reading for each session and from past experience it is estimated that students would need to devote some fifteen to twenty five hours each week to this preparation. The sessions are structured so as to require a high degree of participation from all students.

The group discussions are facilitated by academics as well as professional experts in the field of taxation. A Moot Court assignment dealing with a South African income tax case study is also presented during this course.

Year 2

In the second year, students perform independent research and draft a minor dissertation (max 25,000 words) on an approved topic. Students are required to present a research proposal, after which an academic supervisor is allocated to each student.

Who is in charge?

Darron West is the programme convenor.

Do I qualify?

The programme is aimed at those students who are already working in a tax environment. The minimum entrance requirements are NQF level 8 qualification in Taxation; or NQF level 8 qualification in Accounting, including taxation courses at that level; or NQF level 8 qualification in Law, including taxation courses. Professional and/or academic references for all applicants may be requested. A curriculum vitae and academic transcript are required on the application. An entrance exam or interview may be required.

How much will it cost?

The provisional course fees are listed in the Fees Handbook.

How do I apply?

Apply online. Applications close on 31 October. The programme code is CM031FTX10. 

What are the lecture times?

The group discussions occur once a week. The duration of each seminar is 4 hours, and the sessions are structured to ensure a high degree of participation from students. Group discussion sessions are conducted in person either at UCT’s Upper Campus or at other appropriate venues in Cape Town which are duly advised.

Course Code Description HEQF credits HEQF level
Year 1
FTX5030W  Taxation coursework 90 9
FTX4036S Research Methods in Taxation 0 8
Year 2
FTX5031W  Taxation Minor Dissertation 90 9

For more information on the courses, please refer to Commerce Postgraduate Handbook.