I’ve got all my docs in a row

Congrats! You completed steps 1-7 from my post “The dreaded p-word”. Now you should have all the docs needed to proceed to part two. Yes, I am sorry- paperwork comes in two parts. I know you are really tired by now, but you are almost there. This part is low intensity and gets completed by other people.

The Department of Higher Education

Okay, so remember when I told you to have two English copies of your University Degree? This is the part where they come into play. You need to authenticate these copies. Usually in RSA when we want to prove that your documents are true copies, you’ll get it certified at the local SAPS office (Police station). This will not be accepted by your recruiter. There is a whole background story here…which you are not interested in. It boils down to International agreements between countries and if you want to really read about it… this link will lead you towards the answer. If you want to prove your document’s authenticity you must get them apostatised at DIRCO. This includes your Degree.

So what’s the role of Department of Higher Ed in all this? Before you can submit your docs to DIRCO, Higher Ed must prove that the Degree has been issued from a registered institution of higher learning. There is a lot of proof and proving going around! Unfortunately, Capetonians, you’re out of luck (again). The DHE in Cape Town does not issue these letters,so you will have to get your stuff to Pretoria.

You can either get a family member to do it on your behalf (which we did), you can go there yourself or you can pay somebody to do it for you (Postnet/ DHL etc).

SOL Plaatje House, 123 Francis Baard Street (previously Schoeman Street), Pretoria
Tel:  (012) 312-6207 / 5201 / 5220 / 5246 / 5294 or 5298

”Educational qualifications obtained through higher educational institutions and training facilities need to be verified by the Department of Higher Education and Training.  The original certificate together with copies should be submitted to the Department of Higher Education and Training, as the relevant section will stamp and sign a true copy of the certificate and issue an original covering letter confirming that the educational institution is a recognised institution in South Africa.  The original covering letter must be signed and stamped by the authorised official, together with the stamped/signed copy of the certificate must then be submitted to the Legalisation Section for legalisation purposes.”http://www.dirco.gov.za/consular/legalisation.htm

It takes about 30 minutes for the person to write and print the letter for you, so do not worry about long queues.


Now you have your proof you can go to DIRCO. Here you have to provide them with the following

  • The letter from DHE, the two copies of your Degree and your original Degree
  • You also supply them with two copies of your Police Clearance Certificate, along with the original.


Physical address: Department of International and Cooperation (DIRCO), OR Tambo Building, 460 Soutpansberg Road, Rietondale, Pretoria, 0084 – Office NE2A-Ground Floor or request the security to direct you to the Legalisation Section (reception area).

Requirements: Our public hours are strictly from 08:30 to 12:30 (Monday to Friday, except for public holidays).

Note:  No letter of permission or ID book etc., is required to submit and collect documents in person (on another person’s behalf).  Customer are required to retain the blue (process) slip with the reference number to ensure that they are able to collect the documents when finalised.

Refer below for the relevant processing times, etc.:



1 to 5 documents received between 08:30 and 12:00

(same-day service)

30 – 45 minutes

More than 5 documents ordocuments received between 12:00 and 12:30

Collection the next working day (during public hours i.e. 08:30 to 12:30)

20 documents or more received during public hours

Two (2) working days (during public hours i.e. 08:30 to 12:30)

Specimen signature requests

Note:  It is regretted that we are not able to provide an undertaking as to how long it will take the signatory to forward their specimen signature to the Legalisation Section.  Therefore, it is depending on response time from the relevant Department/institution

Yeah! You are now done with the paperwork and can apply to teach English as a foreign language in Korea.

NEXT STEP: Read my post on ‘How to choose a recruiter’ and ‘Should I go public or private?’, Hopefully you can read both in 30 minutes, take another 30 to make up your mind- and you’re good to go!









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