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Getting your electrical and mechanical engineering N1-N3 qualification online in 2022 is now the best way compared to the conventional way of attending classes. The online studies are the new normal that students must get used to. With 2022 still being affected by Covid-19 pandemic, it has become clear that colleges must revisit their ways of learning. For more information on Covid-19, click here.  

If you are interested in electrical and mechanical engineering N1-N3 qualification online in 2022 then find below how you can go about it.

Is This Your First Time Studying Electrical or Mechanical Engineering?

Let me introduce the courses if it is your first time choosing to study a course under electrical or mechanical engineering. The courses first and foremost starts from N1 which is the beginner’s level and goes up to N6 which is the diploma level. But for the purpose of this post, we will only focus on N1 to N3

If this is your first time deciding on doing a course, there are a number of considerations you need to know in order to determine at what level you must start your studies. Remember background knowledge-what is mainly called RPL (recognition of prior learning) is very important to avoid repetition and wasting time doing same things over and over again.

Read more: Phasing out of N1-N3 Engineering Studies

At What Level Must You Start Your Studies in Electrical or Mechanical Engineering Course?

As previously mentioned, the studies start from N1 and it is recommended for the following students:

  • If it is your first time studying any pure maths and physics related subjects. In the engineering field Mathematics and Engineering Science (Physics) are compulsory and it will frustrate you to start from a higher level if you do not have a solid background
  • If you did Maths and Science up to Grade 10. It will be still recommended to start from N1
  • If you have left school years and years ago and you want to pursue this field. In as much as you might have passed the subjects 15 to 20 years ago, the knowledge you used to have might be lost and you might need to start at N1 to refresh your mind again

The Importance of the N2 Level in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Courses Compared to Other N-levels

If you feel that N1 is too low a level to start, then you might consider starting from N2. This level has a number of advantages. When you want to apply and qualify as an artisan, one of the requirements is your N2 certificate from Umalusi. The second advantage is that this certificate is from Umalusi, a recognised quality assurer. As a matter of fact, Umalusi is the only National recognised quality assurer operating under the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET).

A certificate from Umalusi means that you can also use the same certificate should you have bigger career dreams overseas. Umalusi and SAQA have processes in place on how you can use this certificate to apply for further studies overseas.

Starting at N2 level is again the most important level advisable to start even if you have bigger qualifications in Mathematics and Science unless if you are already qualified as an artisan. As long as you want to be an artisan and later further your career, you will have to start from N2.

Starting from N3 level is mainly for someone who is working towards their N6 and they need a proper foundation for their N4.

Read more: Requirements for Mechanical Engineering N2

Courses Under Electrical Engineering N1-N3

The following courses fall under electrical engineering qualification:

Courses Under Mechanical Engineering N1-N3

The following courses fall under mechanical engineering qualification:

Importance of Choosing the Right Course-Emphases

Choosing a career under these requires a student to have more knowledge on each and every course. Poor career choice usually results in students being frustrated and dropping out. This wastes student time, finances and creates an emotional strain. The dangers of anxiety, exam stress and fatigue must be avoided. Hence to avoid such, students must ensure they are properly advised on each course before they make the commitment.

Remember that once you choose the course and you want to change in the middle that will not be possible even though some of the subjects are similar. Even one different subject is what makes the course different. You will then need to re-do that particular subject should you need to change the course.

For example, suppose a student wants to study Boilermaking at N1 and the subjects involved are:

Mathematics, Engineering Science, Plating and Structural Steel Drawing, and Metal Workers’ Theory.

When a student decides to change a course and choose Electrical Engineering Heavy Current, Mathematics and Engineering Science are still the same subjects. However Industrial Electronics and electrical Trade Theory are new subjects under Electrical Engineering. Jumping to a set of new subjects comes along with its new challenges and stress. Avoid such as much as you can.

To assist students and given them more information as possible, the Ekurhuleni Technical College website provides extensive information on each course. Should you need to get more information, click on each course. Again, it is important to check this information as it gives you the subjects that are done under each course. You will also find the career advises of each course. Alternatively, you can contact a student advisor at Ekurhuleni Technical College and they will gladly assist you.

How do You Study Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Online in 2022?

Now that we have laid some foundation on the two engineering courses, how do you go about studying online and obtaining your certificate?

Let me clear some confusion that might be created concerning online studies. The online only refers to the studying part and does not include the final exams. All students must attend and write the final exams at their approved exam centre. Currently DHET has not yet made available options to write the final exams online. We hope this might be also possible in the near future.

The writing of the exams is not a problem once you get your preparations right. It is in the preparation that mostly students miss it and end up doing re-writes. The aim of this article is to ensure you write your exams and pass them first time.

Whether you are starting from N1 or N2 or N3, you can register for online classes with Ekurhuleni Technical College (ET College) and simplify your challenges of attending classes or trying to study alone. There are two type of students that the college assists:

Which Students can Register for Online Classes?

The online classes has two categories of students:

  • Students who are registered with ET College already to write exams under ET College
  • Students who are registered with another college of their choice but still want to do online classes

Let us look at the two groups of students:

Students registered under ET College already to write exams under ET College

These students benefit from online classes as it comes as part of their package. They get discounted prices and the fees are already included in the study material fees. Once they receive their study material, they only need to join the class and start attending.

Apart from this benefit, these students also receive exam revision classes and previous papers with memos so as to prepare thoroughly for their final exams. Remember that the aim is to ensure no one fails.

Students who are registered with another college of their choice but still want to do online classes

These students are mostly welcome to join the ET College students for the online classes. They register and pay the prescribed fees so as to have online classes. However ET College only support them up to final exams. Since they are already registered somewhere, ET College does not handle their registration process for the final exams. The college where they are registered must do so.

How Does the Online Class Work?

The students upon registering and paying the prescribed fee are given all the necessary login details that enable them to attend online classes. The online classes are conducted through google classroom and google meet. Students are therefore supposed to have their Gmail accounts in order to have no difficulty in using the two apps.

Google classroom and Google Meet are already found in the Gmail. Step by step registration process and demonstrations are also given to the students. The student receives a welcome package which is sent to their email with all the necessary steps. The student is also given all the information concerning the classes and what they must expect. The terms and expectations of the online classes are already given before the student signs up.

What Must Students Expect in the Online Classes?

The following are the activities expected in the online classes:

  • Students are made aware of the subjects that are offered under the online classes. The pricing package also explains what a student is registering for before they sign up
  • The students are given a time table on the times on which the classes will be live. Students who miss classes will also get recorded videos as these online classes are also recorded. The recorded classes are uploaded and made available to students.
  • Students are given exam tips and exam revision just before final exams
  • Students are given activities and tests to check their understanding.

When is the Best Time to Enroll for Online Classes in 2022?

The calendar of the Department runs in trimesters. There are three exams in a year which are as follows:

  • March/April exams
  • July/August exams
  • November exams.

March/April exams

To register for online classes for March/April exams, students must do so at the beginning of January. The exams start from mid-March hence the times for studying are pretty short. The student has almost two months of study time before the final exams. In this term we usually encourage students not to take too many subjects unless if they are confident they can manage the pressure.

Remember you can choose any number of subjects you want to write at a given term. If other colleges are not allowing that, note that this is allowed at ET College. Since you need to pass four subjects per level, the writing of final exams is at the choice of the student. You can choose to write one subject or two in March/April exams and the last two in July/August. This is just an example but all this is up to a student. Remember you as a student determines your own pace.

July/August exams

To register for July/August exams, student must do so immediately after the March/April exams. Students must avoid waiting for the results first before they can register as this waste valuable time. While waiting for the results which take about one and a half to two months to come, the students can use that time learning. (Note that results usually are released at about one and a half to two months and the time is counted from the last exam). When students register on time they get enough study time and revision time compared to the first trimester. In this term it is advisable for students to take the maximum number of subjects.

November exams

These are the last exams for the year and as previously advised, students must register and start classes immediately after the July/August exams. During this term students are also encouraged to take maximum number of subjects as there is good time to cover all the modules.

What happens when a student fails?

Failure like all other things in life at times is inevitable and we must all learn to embrace it. Failure must not be seen as the end of the road but a reason to try harder. When a student fails, ET College continues to support the student. In as much as the college would have loved to offer the classes at no more cost to the student, maintaining the site does costs money. The student is given discounted fees just to cover the costs of the classes. Students pay less money should they opt to return after failing the subject and they must indicate on an email that they want to return so that a special invoice is generated for them.



In a nutshell, doing electrical and mechanical engineering N1-N3 online in 2022 is the best career choice that you can make. Consider registering for one of the online course after getting all the advice needed. With online studies, you can have the classes at the comfort and safety of your home. The videos are uploaded and accessible after the classes, making it possible for the student to revisit the lesson.

Consider registering for the classes today. Download the forms and register now.

Register now!.

Other resources available

Previous Papers with answers

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Online classes

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