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FAQ NBT Online

1. Which devices are supported by the NBT online platform?

The table below has a list of minimum criteria of all supported devices.



2. What if I do not have access to any of the devices and/or facilities to write the NBT online? Will the written test still be available for me to access?

The remote writing option would be available as an alternate assessment. This will mean that the writers will be responsible for the cost of a courier, proctor/invigilator, venue, etc. 

3. How will I prepare for the test? Will there be an exemplar question?

All writers who have registered for online tests will be able to access a live test simulation prior to the test. Details will be communicated via email and SMS. All registered writers will be required to access the live test simulation. Details will be communicated via email and SMS.

4. If I am registered to write the AQL and MAT test how will this be done for the online test?

For NBT online tests , writers will usually write AQL on the first test date and MAT on the following day. Any deviation from this will be communicated to you.

5. Can I use my mobile/cell phone to take the NBT test/assessment?

No, unfortunately, the NBT online assessment platform only supports Laptops and Computers. The device specification requirements are listed on the website; refer to FAQ 1 for details!

6. What happens if I lose internet connectivity during the test?

Should you lose internet connectivity during the test (5 minutes per hour) your responses will be saved to the system and once you reconnect you will be taken back to the last question answered. This functionality is part of the “Lockdown Browser” that all writers are required to download prior to the test. You should not exit the Lockdown Browser or your session will be lost. Once your internet connectivity is re-established the Lockdown Browser will automatically reconnect. The time allocated within which to complete the assessment will also not be affected and if before the disconnection there were 2 hours left then those 2 hours will be honoured by the platform.

7. If I am writing the online test, how long would I have to wait for my results?

The scores will be made available within 3 weeks after having been written.

8. I don't have a microphone or headset available. What do I need to do?

A headset will NOT be required as the test platform has a built in communication or “chat” function. This chat function will allow you to send real-time queries to a consultant who will assist.

9. If I cannot write online can I book or write the pencil and paper test I booked for?

The National Sessions will only resume once Lockdown Level 1 is achieved nationally. The date of this is uncertain and hence National Sessions cannot be guaranteed in this cycle. You are strongly encouraged to write the Online NBT test.

10. What does it cost to write the NBT?

Costs for the 2021 admission cycle are:

AQL only: R 110

AQL and MAT: R 220

11. How do I pay?

All NBT fees must be paid through EasyPay. Take your NBT registration letter with you to an EasyPay Paypoint near you to pay. You may also pay on the EasyPay website and then print out your receipt.


EasyPay Paypoints are found across South Africa at food stores including Pick N Pay, Shoprite, Checkers, and Spar, as well as many other merchant sites.

What if there are no Easypay paypoints near me?

Some of our students write in areas where Easypay paypoints and online facilities are not available (International students and countries bordering South Africa). The following details are for those particular students only:

Make a direct deposit or EFT payment to NBT Project as follow:

AQL only R110 or AQL and MATHS R220

Bank:    Standard Bank

Account Name:              UCT

Account Number:          071503854

Branch:              Rondebosch

Branch Code:    025009

Reference:         NBT231500



Send confirmation of payment to the NBT Project by FAX: 021-650-5331 or email:

Include your 14-digit NBT Reference Number, your name and ID number when sending confirmation of payment.

NB. Your scores will not be released if the NBT Project does not receive proof of payment.


12. Will I be disadvantaged if I do a pencil and paper test as opposed to the online test?

No writer will be disadvantaged for writing online. The reason is that the NBT cannot have national sessions during the current level 2 lockdown restrictions. There are various other protocols and your safety is important to us.

13. What if my religious affiliation does not allow me to write on a Saturday?

Writers who are unable to participate in the NBT online test on a Saturday will be permitted to write both the AQL and MAT test on Sunday. Provided that you have registered on the website and forwarded the following details to us:

1. Full Name

2. ID Number

3. NBT Reference number 

There are approximately 45 mins break between tests

Please send these details to

14. Will extra time be allowed for “special needs/accommodation for writers?

Yes, kindly contact

15. Can I write the pen and paper test?

Due to the COVID- 19 pandemic, we are unable to offer national sessions during lockdown level 2. There is far too much uncertainty as to when the lockdown will ease and when venues will become available. The national sessions will only resume and be limited to certain venues once lockdown level 1 is reached. Kindly note at this point we cannot give any confirmed dates for such sessions and strongly encourage you to write the Online NBT.

16. What to expect on the test day.

Writers must login to the test site by 14h30. Writers that did not login to the test simulation on 8th October (required) will be required to capture a Photograph and download the Lockdown Browser.

All writers will be required to go through a security confirmation and must have their photo ID/passport available.

Writers are reminded that the test is undertaken in a secure proctored online environment. You will be monitored throughout the test to ensure that you follow all testing procedures. Your entire test session will be recorded. You may only have a piece of paper and a pen/pencil in the test room. Books, cell phones, smart watches, calculators, and any other items are strictly prohibited. Please ensure that you comply with all test requirements to avoid the invalidation of your test.

The Test will commence at 15h00. The NBTs are multiple-choice tests. The AQL test will be written on 14 October and MAT on the 15 October. The tests are timed and will take approximately 3 hours to complete.

Instructions will be provided on screen.

17. Must I pay again for a rescheduled test?

If you are currently registered and have paid, you do not have to pay to write a rescheduled test. If you choose another test date you will be required to pay for that test.


18. What are the NBT tests like?

The NBT’s are multiple choice tests.

There are two tests.  The Academic Literacy and Quantitative Literacy Domains (AQL are combined into one multiple choice test and is approximately three hours of writing time).

The AQL test is written by applicants to all programmes. The second test is the Mathematics (MAT) (pure or core maths), which is written by applicants to programmes for which mathematics (pure or core maths) is a requirement.

The MAT test is also multiple choice and timed, with three hours allowed. The tests are described in more detail under “Test Content” on the NBT website.

19. NBT Online Test Rules

  • The NBT Online test is undertaken in a secure proctored online environment. You will be monitored throughout the test to ensure that you follow all testing procedures. Your entire test session will be recorded. Writers are required to comply with all test rules and requirements to avoid the invalidation of your test.
  • The test “Simulation” prior to the test day is compulsory. You will be advised of the date of this simulation for each test session. The simulation allows a trial run of the Photo ID verification process and ensure the Lockdown Browser downloads successfully to prevent any unexpected problems on the test day.
  • Please take note of the supported devices for taking the NBT test online (FAQ 1). 
  • You must have administrator rights on the computer as you are required to download the Lockdown Browser software onto the computer and may be prompted for the admin password.
  • The NBT Online test must be taken in a quiet room with a blank wall behind you, with good lighting.
  • The Laptop or Computer camera must be operational and facing your face at all times during the test, otherwise, your session may be invalidated. There is a photo panel visible to you during your test so that you can check your camera is functional and your face visible.
  • Your face must be visible so no hoodies or clothing that completely obscures the face are allowed.
  • You may not wear headphones during the test session.
  • No other person may enter the room during your test session. Movement in the room will be picked up by the camera and will invalidate your test session.
  • You may only have a piece of paper and a pen/pencil in the test room. Books, cell phones, smart watches, calculators, and any other items are strictly prohibited. These items will be picked up by the system and will invalidate your test session.
  • Bathroom breaks are permitted but must be less than 5 minutes in duration. 
  • You may have a bottle of water (or other liquid refreshment) with you during the test.