University courses focus on theoretical training in a specialized field, offering degree courses that take a minimum of three to four years to complete.  Entrance requirements for courses vary and can be quite specific. 
You will need to have completed the National Senior Certificate (matric) with very good marks, particular subject choices and may need to meet a list of specific requirements to gain entrance. 
The longer you study, the more specialized the field becomes; once you have completed your degree you can continue studying and earn a postgraduate level of study (Honours, Masters and Doctorate).

Pic: Students at the University of the North West
Credit: Hannlie Coetzee. Brand South Africa