How to Join

You can join the lab through several academic pathways, depending on your current or intended level of study:

  • PhD in Computer Science or PhD in IT: Be accepted by the lab to apply for a PhD on a topic from the lab.
  • MSc in Computer Science: Be accepted by the lab to apply for an MSc on a topic from the lab.
  • MIT in Big Data Science: If you are in the MIT program or will be applying, be accepted by the lab, enrol in COS 802 - NLP for Data Scientists, and complete your MIT 807: Mini Dissertation with the lab.
  • Honours in Computer Science: Applying to be an Honours student, be accepted by the lab, take COS 783 - Data Mining, and then conduct your COS 700 Research Project with the lab.

For Postdocs

Apply to be postdoc in our lab.

  • You would be joining as a senior member of the lab and as such we would be interested in your research plan for the 1 or 2 years you would be with us.

Participation and Benefits

As part of the lab, you will:

  • Engage in monthly lab meetings to discuss ongoing research and new ideas.
  • Participate in bi-weekly mentorship sessions with experienced mentors in the field of data science and social impact.
  • Present your research at annual seminars, offering you the opportunity to contribute to influential publications and share your findings with the broader academic community.
  • Access to DSFSI Resources and Network, we have a number of computational resources and also an extensive network of researchers you will get access to as part of the lab.

Application Process

We accept applications annually from May to July for positions starting in the following year (January/February). It is advisable to submit your application during this period to ensure timely consideration. The duration of your involvement can vary based on your academic program and mutual agreement with your mentor, but typically spans the duration of your academic enrolment.

Tips for Your Application

  • Start Early: Take your time to craft a thoughtful application. It includes several sections, including open-ended questions that might require extensive reading and innovative thinking.
  • Research Our Work: Familiarise yourself with our lab’s publications and current projects [insert link to publications and projects]. Understanding our work will help you align your application more closely with our goals and find a project that excites you.
  • Showcase Your Unique Background: We value diversity in experience and perspective. Whether you are new to data science or have years of research under your belt, we encourage you to apply and share your unique journey and how it has prepared you to contribute to our lab.

Application Form

You can apply here


  • Application Deadlines: Applications are accepted from May to July of every year. Early applications are encouraged to facilitate thorough review and preparation for the start in the next year.
  • Response Time: Applicants can expect to hear back from us by the end of August.

Whether you are starting your journey in data science or looking to deepen your expertise in a field that makes a difference, the Data Science for Social Impact Lab at the University of Pretoria offers a unique opportunity to advance your academic and professional goals while contributing to meaningful social change. Join us in making an impact with data!