Central Application Office(CAO)

The Central Applications Office is the organization responsible for overseeing undergraduate applications to colleges and universities in South Africa. The primary mission of the Central Applications Office is to centrally process applications fairly and efficiently.

The Central Applications Office (CAO) handles applications for certificates, undergraduate diplomas, and bachelor’s degree programmes at higher education institutions in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and for study programmes at UNISA from diplomas to doctorates.

CAO Status CheckCAO Online ApplicationCAO Form
CAO LoginCAO HandbookCAO Website
CAO Closing DateCAO Change of MindCAO Prospectus
CAO ApplicationCAO Late ApplicationCAO Contact Details
CAO My ApplicationCAO BookletCAO Application Fee


The leading organisation that provides services in the facilitation of student access to post-schooling education.


To direct the activities and processes of the CAO by the operationalization of its service to ensure:

  • Appropriate resourcing to provide the structural stability of the required capacity to deal with growth requirements;
  • The provision of a policy framework to guide protocols, processes and consistent practices;
  • The development and maintenance of advanced human capacity for the knowledge sector to sustain and grow its customer base;
  • The building of an effective communication culture with current and prospective customers, while ensuring the same culture exists in the internal team; and
  • The leveraging of existing partnerships to build future relationships to support the growth of the business.


  • Provide the highest ethical standards of service;
  • Be professional, and empathetic to customer needs and challenges
  • Promote a strong team synergy, mutual support and a friendly atmosphere to work in;
  • Be accessible and resource-driven to meet our customer needs;
  • Facilitate correct information dissemination to our customers, thereby assisting learners to make correct decisions about their careers;
  • Ensure good governance through management support and inclusive participation, accountability and responsiveness to our customer’s needs;
  • Acknowledge the input and relationship with key partnerships in driving the success of post-schooling education; and
  • Instil a climate of passionate employees and encourage internal growth and development among all employees

Phone Numbers

Call Centre: 031 268 4444 or 086 0860 226

Physical Address

Gate 11, Central Services Complex – UKZNMary Thiphe Street (Cato Manor Road)Cato ManorDurban

Postal Address

Private Bag X06Dalbridge4014