Cape Peninsula University of Technology

THE HISTORY of one half of this institution begins in 1920 when the foundation stone of the Cape Technical College building was laid in Longmarket Street in central Cape Town. The establishment of the college followed a decade of community representations that urged the consolidation of the many technical courses that were being offered in various venues around the city. In 1962, another college, the Peninsula Technical College, was established, and five years later it was physically relocated to Bellville and reserved, under the apartheid order of things, for the exclusive use of ‘coloured’ students.

These two institutions operated side-by-side in greater Cape Town for several decades, one serving the coloured community, the other the white community. In the late 1970s, they were both upgraded to technikons. Hardly 10 years later, as the apartheid system gradually collapsed, the coloured Peninsula Technikon opened its doors to all South Africans, while the Cape Technikon had the restriction on its quota for black students lifted. Further changes in the higher education environment occurred in 1993 when technikons were empowered to offer undergraduate and postgraduate degrees as full universities.

After 1994, the sector underwent major changes brought about by the size and shape debate and the merging of institutions into more rational geographic entities. In the Western Cape, this resulted in the merging, in January 2005, of the two greater Cape Town technikons into the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.

Today, nearly 30 000 students are studying at the university’s six faculties: Applied Sciences; Business; Education and Social Sciences; Engineering; Health and Wellness Sciences; and Informatics and Design. The Fundani Centre for Higher Education Development enriches the teaching and learning process at the university; and a special HIV/Aids unit urges the incorporation of the epidemic into all curricula, while at the same time doing research and community outreach.

Facts and Figures  at a Glance1

The Cape Peninsula University of Technology had 28,882 contact students and 70 distance students enrolled in 2007. Full-time students numbered 22,872 and part-time 6,080. Of the student body, 27,103 were South African citizens and 1,267 from other SADC countries, while 582 students were enrolled from non-SADC countries (Actual data, 2007).

Table 1: Cape Peninsula University of Technology - Summary of Enrolment Numbers (Actual data, 2007)


Number of students enrolled per level of study

Major Field of Study

Total Number of Students (Headcount)

Under- graduate degree/ diploma Post-graduate degree/ diploma Masters Degree Doctoral Degree Other qualifications (short courses, certificates etc.)
Science, Engineering & Technology 11,062 10,816 22 191 33 0
Business, Management & Law 9,211 8,977 1 216 17  0
Humanities and Social Sciences 6,489 5,789 528 145 27 0
Health Sciences 2,190 2,109 0 69 12  0
TOTALS 28,952 27,691 551 621 89 0

 Source: Cape Peninsula University of Technology questionnaire response

Table 2: Cape Peninsula University of Technology - Academic and Research staff (Actual data, 2007)

Major Field Of Study

Total Number (headcount)

Science, Engineering & Technology 290
Business, Management & Law 147
Humanities and Social Sciences 166
Health Sciences 54

Source: Cape Peninsula University of Technology questionnaire response



[1] All data presented in this section is headcount data.