Higher Certificate in Local Governance

Gain integrated knowledge and expertise in policy making, strategy, leadership and service delivery within the field of Local Governance.

Enrol Now

About this qualification

The Higher Certificate in Local Governance has been designed to provide students with fundamental knowledge and a range of competencies in the field of Local Governance in the South African context.

The programme covers the structure and system of local governance including important public sector skills such as municipal financial management, municipal service delivery, urban governance, leadership and policy making. Students will gain valuable skills that can be applied at local government or municipal level.

Study method: Distance Learning

This is an online-only programme. All course material is delivered online, via our learning platform iCan, and can be downloaded for offline use. Teaching and learning support is also delivered online.


Higher Certificate

NQF Level






Part-time duration

2 years

Full-time duration

1 year

Notional hours

1200 (15-30h/week)


Programme syllabus

This qualification contains 8 credit-bearing modules and offers an industry-relevant curriculum aimed at developing critical skills and knowledge to meet the scarce-skill government environment. Students will gain integrated knowledge on policy making, strategy development, service delivery programmes, local government leadership issues and good governance within the context of African and Ubuntu-leadership.

Academic Literacy101
Local Governance in Context202
Municipal Service Delivery153
Local Democracy and Urban Planning154
Good Corporate and Financial Governance155
Trends in Urban Governance156
Local Government Policy Making and Analysis157
Leadership and Local Governance158
Total Credits120
  • Reduce any stress about learning with a set academic schedule to follow mapped out by module with weekly lesson plans. 

  • Access all your programme material and manage your student account via iCan, our intuitive online learning platform.

  • Flexible payment options are available. View programme fees.

Apply Now
Semester Dates

Learn more about this qualification

The Higher Certificate in Local Governance is intended for both individuals who are already employed in public sector institutions or who aspire to work within the public sector. The programme effectively merges theory and practice and equips students with academic knowledge and skills at a Local Government level. Therefore, this programme is relevant to individuals in a variety of roles such as:

  • Local Government officials
  • Students who already work in Government departments 
  • Students with an interest in Local Government matters
  • Politicians who are within the Local Governance space e.g. councillors 

Upon successful completion of this programme you should be able to:

  • Utilise the required academic knowledge and skills to function optimally at the entry level of higher education learning.
  • Explain the principles of local governance with specific reference to the developmental mandate, statutory obligations, structures, and systems of municipalities.
  • Provide knowledge and insight of objectives, approaches, types of stakeholders, and mechanisms to continuously improve service delivery within a local government context.
  • Develop an integrated knowledge of community participation mechanisms and priorities in urban planning.
  • Enable students to interpret the principles of strategic budgeting and financial corporate governance within a local government context.
  • Critically evaluate the potential consequences and impact of various key trends in urban governance.
  • Apply theories and techniques to participate in local government policy making and analysis.Develop an integrated knowledge of local government leadership issues and good governance within the context of African and Ubuntu-leadership

During this programme you will complete various types of assessments, there are no examinations. You will complete three compulsory assessments in the programme that contribute towards your final course mark. Formative assessments contribute 30% towards the final mark and the Summative assessment 70%. The course pass mark is 50%.

Assessment dates will be available in iCan, via the programme calendar. These dates will also be published by your lecturer during orientation week.

A module lecturer is assigned to each module in this programme. As the mode of delivery is distance education, all instruction will take place via iCan, our online learning platform. Your module lecturer will provide a teaching and learning plan for the duration of the module as well as lesson plans for each week.

Students are required to adhere to these schedules. Lecturers will also host regular online classes. The content covered in each class will be in line with the module schedule and weekly lesson plan. Sticking to the schedules provided will ensure you don’t miss out on any opportunities to learn and ask questions.

In between classes you can engage with your lecturer directly on iCan or you can discuss the learning content with other students in the discussion forums, which are set up per module for your convenience.

The following learning activities form part of your overall learning path:

  • Orientation week (included in the course duration)
  • Self-directed reading and activity completion
  • Multimedia activities such as video clips and podcasts
  • Completion of quizzes and continuous assessment opportunities on iCan
  • Online announcements of activities and assignment submission
  • Participation in discussion forums
  • Self-reflection
  • Case studies
  • Online/Live lectures using Microsoft Teams/Zoom
  • Assessment activities and compulsory submission of formative and summative assessments per module

Accredited private higher education

Since 2006 we have been providing accredited distance learning in the field of business studies. Join our community and discover your potential with iQ Academy. Click here to view our accreditations.

The next semester is starting soon, don’t miss out!

Enrol Now

Next intake: 6 March 2023

Register by 28 February 2023

Since 2006 we have been providing accredited distance learning in the field of business studies. Join our community and discover your potential with iQ Academy.

Fully accredited private higher education. Click here to view our various accreditations.

Fully accredited private higher education. Click here to view our various accreditations.

Apply Now

Programme admissions

Academic requirements:

  • National Senior Certificate (NSC), or Senior Certificate (NC), or National Certificate Vocational (NCV level 4)
  • At least 30% in the language of teaching and learning
  • Matric exemption certificate optional
  • Candidates of a mature age may also be considered for entry, based on their experience in a managerial/supervisory capacity.
  • Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL): Candidates may apply for admission through the process of  RPL.

Institutional requirements: 

  • At least 18 years of age
  • Ability to read and write in English, which is the language of instruction
  • Students should also possess a basic level of digital literacy skills
  • If candidates do not meet the minimum requirement, they may still enrol based on relevant work experience or mature age exemption

South African citizens:

  • Certified copy of Grade 12 certificate [NSC, NC, NCV (NQF Level 4)]
  • Certified copy of Identity Document/Card
  • Students without Grade 12 are required to prove 12 months of relevant appointment

Non-South African citizens:

  • Copy of highest school qualification
  • Copy of passport
  • Copy of study permit and copy of SAQA evaluation

At iQ Academy all of our programmes are offered via distance education. Depending on the course you choose you’ll either be studying fully online or with textbooks and online support.

  • Online-only courses: All course material is available online and can be downloaded, there are no textbooks.
  • Internet-supported courses with textbooks: You will receive textbooks via courier and the course is supported by compulsory online learning activities. Your course material will also be available online.

Teaching and learning will take place online whichever study method you choose. That means that you will need to partake in online learning activities and classes. For more information on each study method, enquire now.

  • A PC, Tablet or Smartphone
  • Access to a reliable internet connection
  • Web browser (Chrome or Firefox)
  • An active email account

Recommended data:

  • At least 1GB of data per month for online-only programmes
  • +/- 500MB of data for internet-supported programmes

Programme semester dates

Our Higher Certificates have 2 intake periods per academic year, Semester 1 and Semester 2. To secure your spot, in either semester, all you need to do is successfully complete the application process and register by the deadline. View the available dates below or enquire now for more info.

Enrol Now

Next intake: 6 March 2023

Register by 28 February 2023

Enrol Now

Next intake: 7 August 2023

Register by 31 July 2023


Programme fees


Fees are all-inclusive, no hidden costs.

Ways to pay the programme fee

Pay your course fees upfront and enjoy great benefits

Save 10% on the total fee plus get 2GB of FREE data, every month, for 12 months. Offer valid from 01 Oct 2022 – 28 February 2023. T&C’s apply.

Enrol Now

Interest free monthly instalments

Pay as little as R642* / monthly

Enrol Now

Need additional info? View more about our payment options. *Terms and deposit subject to affordability.

What’s included?
  • All your learning material
  • Dedicated lecturer and student support
  • Exclusive Alumni discount: Save 20% on your next course

  • Official Graduation ceremony hosted by iQ Academy

  • Free online DO Life micro-courses

  • Exclusive student community


A community of learners

Hear what our students have to say

“Thanks iQ, for making it possible for everyone to study without feeling the financial pressure with your fee structures. The lectures are amazing. Looking forward to the future now…thank you!”

Xolelwa Johanna Thuputlela

“I am grateful to our facilitators who were with us throughout. I’d encourage everyone to take a course with iQ, you will never regret it. Thank you and keep up the good work!”

Anna Ivy Masondo

“I began my journey with iQ and never looked back. I was promoted from receptionist to admin manageress. I truly believe education paves the way to success.”

Roxanne Naidoo

“Being in IQ Academy changed my life and the way I see things. Thank you for inspiring me to learn, keep up the good work.”

Sindiswa Mkhize


Enquire about this programme or enrol now

Complete the form to request a free call-back from one of our Enrolment Consultants. Discuss any questions you have or if you’re ready you can complete your application over the phone immediately.

  • Example: (082) 123-4567
  • By clicking “Submit”, you explicitly and actively consent to our processing of your personal information in accordance with our Privacy Policy. In order to continue please select the Accept checkbox below:
Know someone who would enjoy this programme? Share it with them!

Learning with iQ Academy

From day one, you’ll be part of the iQ community. With a team of experts at your side and an exclusive student community, you’ll never feel alone during your online course.

See Testimonials
  • All programmes are lecture-led, which means hands-on support at every step.

  • Our intuitive student portal, iCan, makes learning accessible and easy. Now you can learn anywhere from your PC, tablet or smartphone.

  • Enjoy orientation week before you start your course. Join a vibrant, supportive student community.

Continue browsing
Latest articles
Go to Top