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Admission to Coursework Programs Policy

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Section 1 - Policy Statement

(1) The Admission to Coursework Programs Policy provides the framework for admission to all coursework programs and units at Australian Catholic University (ACU).

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Section 2 - Policy Scope

(2) This Policy applies to admission to all undergraduate, graduate entry and postgraduate coursework programs, and non-award study of units, whether by application through a Tertiary Admissions Centre or directly to Australian Catholic University. It applies to domestic and international admission to both Commonwealth-supported places and fee-paying places.

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Section 3 - Definitions

(3) Terms used in this Policy and the associated procedure are consistent with the Glossary of Student and Course Terms. In addition, the following words and expressions have the meanings listed below:

Term Definition
Adjustment factors additional points that may be used in combination with an applicant’s Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) to derive a person’s course Selection Rank. Adjustments do not change an applicant’s ATAR, but change their Selection Rank for a particular course or courses.
Admission pathway any one of the options available to a prospective student that will enable them to meet the entry requirements of their chosen course(s).
Admission prerequisite a requirement that must be met by an applicant in order to be eligible for consideration for admission to the course.
ATAR related thresholds
  1. Lowest ATAR to which an offer was made: the lowest unadjusted ATAR of an applicant to which an offer of a place was made in the relevant year or year-to-date.
  2. Lowest Selection Rank to which an offer was made: the lowest Selection Rank of an applicant to which an offer of a place was made in the relevant year or year-to-date (including the consideration of any adjustments the applicant may have been eligible for).
  3. Minimum Selection Rank required for consideration to enter in the next intake: Where a threshold minimum Selection Rank must be achieved to be considered for admission to a course or institution.
  4. Guaranteed Entry ATAR (or Selection Rank): where achievement of a specified ATAR or Selection Rank (as appropriate) will guarantee acceptance into a course or institution, subject to any non-ATAR criteria being met, such as a prerequisite study or English language proficiency.
Audit where a participant is permitted to attend a unit on payment of the prescribed fee but does not complete assessment requirements.
Course an approved program of study leading to an accredited higher education award of the University.
At school offer where an offer of enrolment is made to a current secondary school student prior to release of ATARs or equivalent (e.g. OP in Queensland, IB) Such offers may be conditional on other requirements being met, such as successful completion of a Senior Secondary Certificate of Education, prerequisite study, or achievement of a specified minimum Selection Rank.
Non-award refers to individual units undertaken which do not count towards an award program at ACU.
Offer formal notification from the University or the relevant Tertiary Admissions Centre on behalf of the University offering a place in a nominated course.
Offer rounds refers to the series of dates on which offers of higher education places are issued to prospective students by the tertiary admission centres and institutions throughout the year.
Recommended Studies subjects which are not a requirement for entry, but which applicants are recommended to have completed to assist them to undertake a course.
Tertiary Admissions Centre (TAC)
the admission authority established in each Australian state/territory to coordinate the admission processes of participating institutions for undergraduate and, in some cases, postgraduate courses. The authorities are:
  • NSW/ACT: Universities Admissions Centre (UAC)
  • Qld: Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC)
  • Vic: Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC)
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Section 4 - Principles

(4) Australian Catholic University has admission standards that:

  1. are grounded in the ACU Mission, Identity and Values and guided by the strategic priorities of the University;
  2. are consistent with the Australian Qualifications Framework, and set in accordance with the Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2021;
  3. are clear, concise, equitable and transparent;
  4. ensure that students have adequate prior knowledge and skills, including English language proficiency, to succeed in the program; and
  5. support the University in achieving strategic goals.

(5) The University will assess all applicants through fair, equitable and documented policies and procedure and defined admission criteria.

(6) The University reserves the right to withdraw an offer or cancel the enrolment of a student where an offer is made on the basis of incomplete, inaccurate, fraudulent or misleading information supplied by the applicant or certifying authority. Any fees paid may be forfeited.

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Section 5 - Entry Requirements

(7) Academic Board will:

  1. approve the minimum entry requirements to be met for entry to any award course;
  2. approve the minimum eligibility rank for undergraduate courses (See Schedule 1);
  3. approve entry requirements for individual courses in accordance with the Course Accreditation, Amendment and Review Policy;
  4. ensure that the entry requirements for any course will be as consistent as possible across different State/Territory jurisdictions and/or campuses.

(8) Different minimum selection ranks may apply for the same course offered on different campuses due to varying levels of demand.

(9) An Executive Dean may apply to the Academic Registrar and the Provost to vary the minimum eligibility rank for a particular program.

(10) For the purpose of admission to ACU, the minimum eligibility rank is calculated using the unadjusted ATAR or equivalent supplemented by any adjustment factors allocated under approved schemes outlined in Section 15.

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Section 6 - Availability of Places

(11) The Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) is responsible for determining the allocation of Commonwealth-Supported Places (CSP) across all courses.

(12) The commencing places available in all coursework award programs, both CSP and fee-paying, in any given year or semester, will be determined by the Provost in accordance with the enrolment plan and Enrolment Plan Policy.

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Section 7 - Authority for Admission to Coursework Programs

(13) The authority to admit students to coursework programs is delegated to the Academic Registrar for domestic applicants and the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Global and Education Pathways) for international applicants.

(14) Designated officers are authorised to act on behalf of the University, in accordance with approved delegations, to admit applicants to these programs.

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Section 8 - Administration of Admission Processes

(15) Administration of domestic admission processes is the responsibility of the Direct Admissions Services, Student Administration.

(16) Administration of international admission processes is the responsibility of the International Admissions, Global Engagement.

(17) Applications will be administered in accordance with this Policy and related policies, procedures and protocols.

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Section 9 - Application Process

(18) Applications through a Tertiary Admissions Centre (TAC) must adhere to the processes, closing dates and payment schedules published by that TAC.

(19) Direct applications to ACU must adhere to the processes, closing dates and payment schedules published by ACU.

(20) To gain entry to a course an applicant must:

  1. have applied through the relevant TAC or directly to ACU, in accordance with required timelines and the application procedures for that course;
  2. have satisfied all minimum entry requirements of the University;
  3. if intending to undertake study on a student visa, satisfy the University that they meet the Genuine Student requirements of the relevant Australian Government department;
  4. meet any specific admission prerequisite requirements for the course, as approved in the relevant course rules;
  5. have been offered a place within the course and enrol within the prescribed time.

(21) Applicants may also be considered on the basis of demonstrated equivalent knowledge, work and/or life experience.

(22) The University may refuse admission to a qualified applicant if:

  1. the limit on available places is exceeded; or
  2. there are not appropriate and sufficient personnel, resources or number of applicants to enable the course to be offered; or
  3. there are other restrictions or limitations applying to the course; or
  4. the applicant has been subject to termination or exclusion from ACU or another university; or
  5. other matters that the University considers relevant to an applicant’s reasonable prospect of success.
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Section 10 - English Language Proficiency

(23) Proficiency in English is required for entry to all courses. Proficiency may be specified differently in various State/Territory jurisdictions.

(24) Non-current year 12 applicants without a previous pass in Year 12 English must attain the equivalent by satisfying approved alternative criteria. These criteria include English completed as part of any senior secondary school studies deemed by ACU to be equivalent to Australian year 12. Approved alternatives are outlined in the relevant state-based TAC English Proficiency schedules.

(25) Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate their English proficiency, as set out in Schedule 4. Any such English language proficiency result must have been completed no earlier than two years prior to commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission.

(26) English language proficiency standards may be specified by the professional registration body associated with a course in a particular discipline.

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Section 11 - Other Admission Prerequisites

(27) Where an admission prerequisite includes the requirement of interview, folio, audition or other performance or demonstration of practical skill or other attribute, an applicant must comply with the criteria and directions provided in relation to any such requirement.

(28) Where submission of additional information is required, for example regarding relevant experience or previous study, an applicant must comply with the directions provided in relation to any such requirement.

(29) Where entry to a course has a prerequisite of completion of an appropriate degree or other qualification, such degree or other qualification must normally have been completed within the preceding 10 years.

(30) An applicant may only be admitted to a course on the basis of completion of a prerequisite degree or other qualification more than 10 years previously:

  1. on the basis of subsequent development and life or work experience in the discipline, and as approved by the Head of School or equivalent or nominee; or
  2. as provided for in the course rules for that program.
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Section 12 - Adjustment Factors

(31) Academic Board may approve the categories of adjustment factors available for admission to ACU.

(32) Academic Board will approve annually the maximum number of adjustment factors than may be applied to an applicant’s selection rank in respect of any undergraduate course.

(33) The University offers adjustment factors for applicants to undergraduate courses, as detailed in Schedule 5.

(34) The Adjustment factors normally involve additional points added to an applicant’s ATAR or equivalent, for the purposes of determining eligibility for admission to courses offered by ACU only.

(35) The allocation of adjustment factors does not affect an applicant’s ATAR but supplements the applicant’s rank for the purpose of assessing their eligibility for admission to the course. A rank is not the same as an ATAR and one additional point does not equate to one ATAR point.

(36) Adjustment factors are also allocated to applicants under the University’s Equity and Access Schemes, as detailed Schedule 6 of this policy.

(37) Where adjustment factors are granted for similar reasons, a cap on the number of additional points will apply, as detailed in Schedules 5 and 6 of this policy. An overall maximum number of additional points is applied to an applicant’s selection rank from the combination of all adjustment factors they are eligible for.

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Section 13 - Basis of Selection - Undergraduate

(38) With the exception of equity and/or specific entry places offered in accordance with Section 15 of this Policy, the selection of applicants for admission is based on academic merit and satisfaction of any other admission requirements.

(39) Where the entry requirements include satisfying criteria associated with interview, written statement, folio, audition or other demonstration of defined attributes, selection is based on both academic merit and those criteria.

(40) Non-current Year 12 applicants are assessed on the basis of their Year 12 or other studies and are given an equivalent ranking to enable comparable selection for courses requiring a Selection Rank.

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Section 14 - Basis of Selection - Postgraduate

(41) The selection of applicants for admission is based on the satisfaction of the minimum entry requirements for postgraduate study as identified in Schedule 3 and any other admission requirements as defined in the course rules.

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Section 15 - Entry, Access and Equity Schemes

(42) The University has established a number of access and equity schemes which provide for consideration of additional criteria in assessing applicants and their potential for success in university study. These schemes are identified in Schedule 5.

(43) Specific entry provisions may also apply for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander applicants. These applicants will be referred to the Indigenous Higher Education Unit, within First Peoples, on the campus at which they wish to study.

(44) Applicants whose educational qualifications do not satisfy the requirements for admission to a particular course but who have equivalent, demonstrated knowledge, skills and/or competencies, may be granted admission to the course, subject to approval by the Academic Registrar, in consultation with the relevant Course Coordinator, Head of School or equivalent.

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Section 16 - Offer

(45) All applicants will be advised in writing regarding the outcome of their application for a place either by ACU, or by the relevant TAC. A verbal indication regarding eligibility is not a formal offer of place and is not binding.

(46) All offers of a place will specify the course and/or specialisation (where applicable), funding status (CSP or fee-paying), study mode and location for which the offer is made.

(47) All offers of a place will provide links to relevant policies, procedures and guidelines relating to enrolment, academic integrity, tuition fees, charges and refunds.

(48) All offers will detail any particular conditions of enrolment and/or participation in the course, such as health requirements for students undertaking clinical work, requirements for security checks, particular requirements for work placements and any language requirements.

(49) All offers of a place will be conditional upon the provision of proof of completion of admission requirements and/or upon other factors detailed in the letter of offer.

(50) Failure to meet any condition of offer by the specified date may result in the withdrawal and cancellation of the offer.

(51) Students may only undertake study in the course in the study mode and/or at the location for which an offer is made. Individual units may only be taken in a different mode/location if approved by the Course Coordinator, or as documented in the relevant Course Enrolment Guide.

(52) An offer of a place in a coursework program will remain valid for one academic year unless otherwise specified in the offer letter.

(53) Once an offer of a place has been accepted through enrolment via the student system, the student will be subject to the Academic Regulations and other student-related policies, procedures and guidelines.

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Section 17 - Deferment of Offer

(54) An applicant who receives an offer of a place in a coursework program at ACU can defer commencing that course for up to one year, unless the Executive Dean determines otherwise for a particular program. Executive Deans may choose not to grant deferments in any course or any admission cycle.

(55) In exceptional circumstances, and as approved by the designated officer, a student may apply to defer for up to two years. Documentary evidence detailing the circumstances will be required to support the application.

(56) An applicant whose application to defer admission has been approved will receive written confirmation of their deferment and be guaranteed a place, in the following academic year, in the course and at the location for which the original offer was made, provided the course is available to commencing students.

(57) Where an applicant’s deferred place is for a program that is subsequently discontinued or withdrawn after an offer has been made, the applicant will be advised of any alternative program, or programs, available.

(58) Deferment in an undergraduate course will not be granted where the applicant intends to undertake another course of tertiary study at ACU or any other university or post-secondary education provider during the period of deferment.

(59) A deferment will lapse if the applicant does not apply to take up the deferred place or the applicant does not complete enrolment requirements by the date specified by the University.

(60) If a deferment lapses, the applicant will be required to make a new application for admission according to the standard admission application processes at the time.

(61) Where a student wishes to be considered for a place in a different course, they can apply for an offer to a different course via the Alternate Offer for Commencing Students process. Students must meet all eligibility requirements to receive an offer for the alternative course.

(62) Deferment of a place is not available for one-year, end-on Honours courses.

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Section 18 - Admission to Honours Programs

(63) To be eligible for entry to an Honours program a student must have:

  1. a minimum GPA of 5.5; and
  2. satisfy the requirements set out in the relevant course rules.

Approval for Proposed Area of Study

(64) Offers of admission to a Bachelor Honours course will:

  1. require the approval of the National Head of School or nominee; and
  2. will only be made where the student’s proposed area of study aligns with a demonstrated capacity for Honours research and supervision within the School; and
  3. will be subject to Section 6 of this Policy.
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Section 19 - Transfers

Transfer Categories

(65) An ACU student may apply to transfer:

  1. from one program to another program at the same level, offered at the same or another campus;
  2. from a double degree program to a component single degree of that program;
  3. from a certificate or higher-level program to another program at the same level or a bachelor degree level course, offered at the same or another campus;
  4. within a program, from one campus to another campus;
  5. between postgraduate program specialisations or between nested postgraduate programs courses.

Eligibility Criteria

(66) Applications for transfer are determined on the basis of academic merit. To be eligible for consideration for a transfer a student must have:

  1. successfully completed at least two units within the program at ACU in which the applicant is enrolled; and
  2. in all cases, have satisfied all admissions prerequisites and any other entry requirements for the program to which the applicant is seeking to transfer; and
  3. achieved a passing GPA, or hold a selection rank at least equivalent to the published rank for entry to that program from the previous year’s main offer round at the given campus.

(67) Students seeking transfer to the undergraduate courses identified in Schedule 1 of the Admission to Coursework Programs Procedure, will be subject to a quota of available places.

(68) Students seeking a campus transfer within their current program will be approved subject to place availability.

(69) Where a student has yet to receive a result for any unit within their current program, they can apply for an offer to a different course via the Alternate Offer for Commencing Students process. Students must meet all eligibility requirements to receive an offer for the alternative course.

(70) Where a student has completed one award and seeks entry to another, they must follow the standard admission application process to apply for the second course.

Application to Transfer

(71) An application for transfer must be lodged with Admissions via the prescribed process and by the published closing date.

(72) Applications will be assessed in accordance with the eligibility criteria outlined in clause (64).

(73) Offers will be made only where places are available.

(74) Transfers are only available from the commencement of a standard study period.

(75) Domestic students who are unsuccessful in their application for transfer may apply for admission to their chosen course of study through the general admission process via the state TAC.

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Section 20 - Students Gaining Permanent Resident Status

(76) An international student who gains Permanent Resident status, and submits the relevant form and supporting documentation, will be transferred to:

  1. a CSP in the case of an undergraduate student; or
  2. a domestic fee-paying place in the case of a postgraduate student. If CSP are available within the postgraduate course, the student will be transferred to a CSP.

(77) If the application is submitted before the census date in a study period, the transfer will be effective from the beginning of that study period.

(78) If the application is submitted after the census date for the study period, the student will remain liable for fees at the international student fee rate for the remainder of the study period and the transfer will take place for the following study period.

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Section 21 - Pathway Programs

(79) ACU offers approved entry pathway programs for domestic and international students. These are listed in Schedule 8.

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Section 22 - Applicants Subject to Termination or Exclusion

(80) An applicant whose enrolment at ACU, or another university, has been terminated on the grounds of unsatisfactory academic performance will not be considered for admission into an award course, or individual unit(s) within an award course until at least two semesters have elapsed from the date of termination.

(81) Applicants for admission following termination of enrolment at ACU or another University must demonstrate changed circumstances which will allow for greater likelihood of success in their course of study.

(82) An applicant whose enrolment at this or another university has been cancelled under any disciplinary provisions will not be considered for admission into any course or individual unit(s) before the exclusion has been lifted or the duration of the exclusion has expired.

(83) In cases where no specific period of exclusion has been identified, an applicant will be not considered for admission until at least two standard study periods have elapsed from the date of exclusion.

(84) No academic credit will be granted for any study or other learning or practical experience undertaken during the period of exclusion.

(85) A person who wishes to return to ACU following a period of termination or exclusion on academic or disciplinary grounds must follow the relevant direct application process.

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Section 23 - Units Studied on a Non-award Basis

Admission to Study Individual Units on a Non-award Basis

(86) Subject to a place being available and subject to approval by the Head of School or equivalent, or nominee, the Designated Officer may admit an applicant to study units on a fee-paying, non-award basis in any study period.

(87) Applicants must meet unit requirements and their enrolment will be subject to the provisions of the Academic Regulations. A student enrolled on this basis will be formally assessed in the units in which they enrol.

(88) If the student subsequently applies for and is granted admission to a course at the University, units successfully completed on a non-award basis may be credited to that course, subject to the Academic Regulations and the relevant course rules.

Admission to Undertake Cross-Institutional Studies

(89) Subject to a place being available and subject to approval by the Head of School or equivalent, or nominee, the Designated Officer may admit an applicant to study one or more units as a cross-institutional student, for credit towards an award of another institution.

(90) Cross-institutional students must meet unit prerequisites and their enrolment will be subject to the provisions of the Academic Regulations. A student enrolled on this basis will be formally assessed in the units in which he/she is enrolled.

Admission to Undertake Study Abroad and Exchange Studies

(91) Subject to a place being available and subject to approval by the Head of School or equivalent, or nominee, the Designated Officer may admit an applicant to study units on a study abroad or exchange basis.

(92) Applicants must meet unit prerequisites requirements, together with the English language proficiency requirements identified in Schedule 4. Enrolment will be subject to the provisions of the Academic Regulations.

(93) A student enrolled on this basis will be formally assessed in the units in which they enrol. If the student subsequently applies for and is granted admission to a course at the University, units successfully completed on a study abroad or exchange basis may be credited to that course, subject to the Academic Regulations and the relevant course rules.

Auditing Units

(94) Subject to a place being available, a Head of School or equivalent, or nominee, may permit an applicant to audit one or more units for the prescribed audit fee. Participants who wish to have an audited unit assessed must, by the prescribed date, apply to undertake the unit on a non-award basis, comply with enrolment procedures and pay the non-award tuition fee.

Units Including a Practical Placement Component

(95) An applicant will not be offered a place on a non-award, cross-institutional, study abroad or auditing basis in any professional experience unit or unit that includes a practical placement.

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Section 24 - Withdrawal of Offer and/or Cancellation of Enrolment

(96) In the event that any error in assessment of the application and/or making of an offer is identified, ACU will advise the applicant of the error and potential academic implications and will take the following action:

  1. honour the offer made to the applicant if the applicant agrees with this outcome and there are no prerequisite/regulatory body factors that prohibit such action; or
  2. offer the applicant a place in any other course to which they are eligible and in which a place is available, provided the applicant is able to commence that course no later than the end of the second week of semester; or
  3. if no such place can be offered, withdraw the offer of a place and reimburse any fees paid by the applicant.

(97) If an offer is made and results or other information is subsequently found to be inaccurate, through no fault of the applicant, the University will act as follows:

  1. if an applicant’s selection rank is higher than that originally awarded, the University will endeavour to admit the applicant to the course for which the applicant had expressed a preference and to which the correct entry rank would have earned admission, provided that:
    1. the applicant is able to commence the course no later than the end of the second week of the study period.
    2. when the error is identified, a place is still available in that course; and
  2. if an applicant’s selection rank is lower than that originally awarded, the University reserves the right to withdraw an offer at any time within the first two weeks of the semester for which an offer was made and accepted. If an offer is withdrawn, the University will consider the applicant for a place in a course for which the applicant is qualified, provided that:
    1. a place is still available in that course; and
    2. the applicant is able to commence that course no later than the end of the second week of the study period.

(98) If an error under clause (97)a. or b. is identified after the second week of the study period, any offer made will be deferred to the next available commencing study period.

(99) Where a new offer is made under clause (97) or (98), the offer will specify a deadline for application for deferment in the new course, if applicable.

(100) The University may withdraw an offer to any suitably qualified applicant where a course has been suspended or discontinued. In such a case, the University will consider the applicant for a place in an alternative course or refund any fee paid.

(101) The Academic Registrar will withdraw an offer and/or cancel enrolment if an applicant is found to have been admitted on the basis of incomplete, inaccurate, fraudulent or misleading information, in accordance with the Dealing with Instances of Fraudulent Information Policy. Fees paid may be forfeited.

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Section 25 - Appeals and Complaints

(102) Appeals and complaints regarding admissions decisions will be dealt with as follows:

  1. for current ACU students via the Student Appeals Policy.
  2. for applicants who are not current ACU students via the Student Complaints Policy.
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Section 26 - Savings Clause

(103) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in this Policy, the Academic Registrar may, in any case deemed appropriate, vary, dispense with or suspend any requirements of this Policy, associated procedures, appendices or schedules. Any action taken under this clause will be reported to the Student Administrative Lifecycle and Policy Committee.

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Section 27 - Schedules

Schedule 1: Selection Ranks

Bachelor Degrees

(104) The minimum selection rank for a bachelor degree course at ACU is 58.5.

Sub-bachelor Programs

(105) The minimum selection rank for associate degree, diploma or certificate programs at ACU is 50.

Schedule 2: Required Year 12 Studies and Subjects Required to Meet Prerequisites

(106) Australian Capital Territory: ACT Year 12 Certificate; subject results need to be accredited as T or H and be studied as a major.

(107) New South Wales: Higher School Certificate (HSC); HSC subject results need to be passed at a minimum of Performance Band 2.

(108) Queensland: Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE); General subject results from units 3 & 4 need to be completed to a minimum of C grade. 

(109) Victoria: Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE); VCE subject results (Units 3 and 4) need to be completed at the minimum 25 VCE study score (or other study score as stated).

(110) Where English is listed as a subject prerequisite in the course rules, the requirement for English as an Additional Language (EAL) is deemed to be the same as that defined by the respective Tertiary Admissions Centre, unless stated otherwise.

Schedule 3: Minimum Admission Requirements - Postgraduate Coursework Programs

(111) The minimum entry requirements for postgraduate coursework programs will be as follows:

Graduate Award  Minimum Entry Requirements
Graduate Certificate 
  • Bachelor degree (or equivalent) 
Graduate Diploma
  • Bachelor degree (or equivalent)
  • Graduate Certificate in a related discipline
Masters Degree
(Coursework)
  • Bachelor degree in a related discipline (or equivalent) for Masters degrees of 1.5-years in length; or 
  • Bachelor degree (or equivalent) in a non-related discipline for Masters degrees 2-years in length; or
  • Graduate Certificate in a related discipline
  • Graduate Diploma in a related discipline

Schedule 4: Evidence of English Language Proficiency

(112) Students whose first language is not English need to provide evidence of their English language proficiency in order to be admitted to courses at ACU. For most courses, ACU uses the list of countries and assessable qualifications published by UAC.

(113) For all courses, English language proficiency can be evidenced by one of the following:

  1. demonstrated completion of an English Language Test with a minimum accepted result as set out in the tables below. Any such English language proficiency test must have been completed no earlier than two years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission.
  2. demonstrated current registration with an accredited body that has an English language requirement equivalent to, or higher than, the standards required by the University. Recognised registrations include:
    1. Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) registration other than Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Health Practice registration;
    2. Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) Teacher registration;
    3. Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) Teacher registration; and
    4. NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) Teacher registration.

(114) English Language Proficiency can also be evidenced by one of the following:

  1. for initial Teacher Education (ITE) courses, demonstrated successful completion of at least two full-time years of study of a secondary or tertiary qualification at AQF Diploma level or higher, where the medium of study was English and completed no earlier than two years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission.
  2. for all undergraduate Nursing and all undergraduate Midwifery courses demonstrated English language proficiency either by providing a written declaration that English is their primary language or evidence that they have achieved the minimum English Language test results as specified in the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) English language skills registration standards , or through one of the following pathway options:
    1. the Primary Language Pathway:
      1. evidence of attendance and satisfactory completion of at least six years of primary and secondary education taught and assessed solely in English in a recognised country, including at least two years between years 7 and 12; or
    2. the Test Pathway:
      1. results must be within 2 years of enrolling and meet the criteria outlined in the table below.
  3. for all other courses demonstrated successful completion of:
    1. at least one full-time year of study of an Australian secondary or tertiary qualification at AQF Diploma level or higher, and completed no earlier than five years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission; or
    2. demonstrated successful completion of at least one full-time year of study of an overseas qualification equivalent to an Australian secondary or tertiary qualification at AQF Diploma level or higher, where the medium of study was English, and completed no earlier than five years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission.

English Language Proficiency Requirement Bands

(115) The following table sets out English Language Requirement Bands and the equivalents for demonstrating minimum English language proficiency requirements for each. Applicants must provide evidence of meeting one of the following international equivalents in the required band:

Evidence
Academic IELTS; or IELTS indicator online test** 
PTE Academic 
TOEFL 
CAE 
ACU English Language test; or ACU EAP 
Band A
Overall score: 6.0
Individual score of 5.5 in all tests 
50 with a minimum of 42 in all four communicative skills 
Internet based score of 60 with: minimum 18 in writing, 8 in reading, 16 in speaking and 7 in listening 
Overall CAE score 169, Minimum score of 169 in writing and speaking and 162 in listening and reading 
C (60-62%) 
Band B
Overall score: 6.0
Individual score of:
6.0 in writing and speaking,
5.5 in listening and reading 
50 with a minimum of 50 in writing and speaking and a minimum of 42 in reading and listening 
Internet based total of 60: minimum 21 in writing, 18 in speaking, 8 in reading and 7 in listening 
Overall CAE score 176, Minimum score of 169 in all tests
C (63-64%) 
Band C
Overall score: 6.5
Individual score of 6.0 in all tests
58 with a minimum of 50 in all four communicative skills 
Internet based total of 79: minimum 21 in writing, 18 in speaking, 13 in reading and 12 in listening
Overall CAE score 185, Minimum score of 176 in all tests 
B (65-74%)
Band D
Overall score: 7.0
Individual score of 6.0 in all tests
65 with a minimum of 50 in all four communicative skills
Internet-based TOEFL (TOEFL iTB) Overall 94 with minimum 21 in writing, 18 in speaking, 13 in reading and 12 in listening
Overall CAE 185
Minimum individual score of 169 in all tests
A (75-79%)
Band E 
Overall score: 7.0
Individual score of 6.5 in all tests
65 with a minimum of 58 in all four communicative skills
Internet based total of 94: minimum 24 writing, 20 speaking and listening and 19 in reading
Overall CAE score 185, Minimum score of 176 in all tests
A (75-100%)
Band F 
Overall score: 7.0
Individual score of:
7.0 in all tests
65 with a minimum of 65 in all four communicative skills
Internet based total of 94
minimum 27 writing, 23 speaking, 24 reading and listening
 
Overall CAE score of 185
Individual score of 185 in all tests* excluding Postgraduate Psychology programs, Nursing and midwifery

(CAE not accepted for those courses)
A (75-79%)*
Excluding Postgraduate Psychology programs, Nursing and Midwifery
Band G
A minimum of 7.0 in Reading and Writing and a minimum of 7.5 in listening and speaking
A minimum of 65 in reading and writing and a minimum of 73 in listening and speaking
Internet-based TOEFL (TOEFL iTB)
with a minimum of 27 in reading, 29 in writing, 27 in listening and 24 in speaking
A minimum of 185 in reading and writing and a minimum of 191 in listening and speaking.
A+
(80 -84)
Band H No score less than 7 in reading and writing. No score less than 8 in listening and speaking A minimum of 65 in reading and writing and a minimum of 79 in listening and speaking No score less than 34 in reading, 27 in writing, 28 in listening and 26 in speaking A minimum of 185 in reading and writing and 200 in listening and speaking. A++ (85 or above)

Acronyms and Abbreviations

CAE  Cambridge English Advanced
IELTS International English Language Testing System
OET Occupational English Test 
PTE Pearson Test of English 
TOEFL IBT Test of English as a Foreign Language (Internet-based Test)

Course Minimum English Language Proficiency Requirement

AWARD
MINIMUM REQUIREMENT
Certificates
Diplomas (excluding Philosophy Theology and Diploma in Educational studies)
Associate Degrees
Band A
Diplomas in Theology and Philosophy Courses
Refer to specific entry requirements
Tertiary Preparation Program (Health Sciences)
Refer to specific entry requirements
Bachelor Degrees (unless specified below)
Incoming Study Abroad for (Undergraduate study)
Band B*
Incoming Study Abroad for (Undergraduate study) with concurrent language study
Band A
Incoming Study Abroad (for Postgraduate study)
Band C
Undergraduate Initial Teacher Education Courses
Bachelor of Education with the following specialisations:
  • Primary
  • Early Childhood and Primary
  • Primary and Secondary
  • Primary and Special Education
  • Secondary
  • Secondary and Special Education
 
Vertical double degrees
Bachelor of Arts/Master of Teaching (Secondary)
Bachelor of Arts (Western Civilisation)/Master of Teaching (Secondary)
 
Double degrees
 
Bachelor of Education in conjunction with any of the following:
• Bachelor of Arts (Humanities);
• Bachelor of Arts (Mathematics)
• Bachelor of Arts (Visual Arts)
• Bachelor of Arts (Design Innovation and Technologies)
• Bachelor of Exercise Science
 
Bachelor of Arts/Master of Teaching (Secondary)
Bachelor of Arts (Western Civilisation)/Master of Teaching (Secondary)
 
Pathway Courses
Bachelor of Educational Studies
Diploma in Educational Studies (Tertiary Preparation)
 
Band G
Graduate Entry Initial Teacher Education courses
Band H
Non-ITE Education Undergraduate courses
Other Health Sciences Courses[4](not set out below)
All Postgraduate Business
All Postgraduate Theology and Philosophy
All Postgraduate Arts
Band C
Bachelor of Early Childhood Education (Birth to Five Years)
Refer to specific entry requirements
 
Master of Education
Master of Educational Leadership
Master of Religious Education Graduate Certificate in Education (all specialisations)
Graduate Certificate in Educational Leadership
Graduate Certificate in Mental Health for Teachers and Educators
Graduate Certificate in Design and Technologies Education
 
Band D
All Law courses
Band E
Psychology courses[5]
Master of Social Work
Band F
Master of Rehabilitation,
Graduate Diploma in Rehabilitation
Graduate Certificate in Rehabilitation
Band E
 
 
Bachelor of Speech Pathology
Refer to specific entry requirements
Bachelor of Nursing and associated double degrees[1][2][3]
Bachelor of Midwifery[2]
Bachelor of Occupational Therapy
Bachelor of Physiotherapy
Bachelor of Psychological Science and associated double degrees and Bachelor of Psychology (Honours)
Bachelor of Social Work
Band F
 
 
[1] A TAFE Diploma held by students registered as enrolled nurses or the Occupational English Test (OET) with a minimum grade of B in each of the four components in one test sitting is acceptable for entry into these courses. The OET test requirements can also be met via 2 test sitting in a six-month period if all four components are tested in each sitting and a minimum score of B in each component is achieved across the two sittings and no score in any component is below C.

[2] Please note that IELTS test requirements can be met from one test sitting, or two test sittings in a six -month period only with an overall minimum score of 7in each sitting and a minimum overall score of 7 in each component across the two sittings, and with no score below 6.5; PTE test requirements can be met via two test sittings in a six-month period with an overall minimum score of 65 with no score below 58; and TOEFL test requirements can be met via two test sittings in a six month period only if: a minimum total score of 94 is achieved in each sitting, with a minimum score of 24 for listening, 24 for reading, 27 for writing and 23 for speaking across the two sittings, and no score in any of the sections is below: 20 for listening 19 for reading 24 for writing, and 20 for speaking. Further information for Bachelor of Nursing applicants can be found here: English Language Skills (AHPRA)

[3] A student may be required to complete an English Language Proficiency test at the prescribed level for registration purposes.

[4] The ACU Tertiary Preparation Program (Health Sciences) is acceptable for entry to the following bachelor degree courses in the Faculty of Health Sciences: Bachelor of Applied Public Health, Bachelor of Biomedical Science, Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Science and Bachelor of Physical Activity, Bachelor of High Performance Sport and Bachelor of Sport and Outdoor Education.

[5] The applicant must meet the English language requirements of AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency) and be registered as a provisional psychologist in order to commence a professional program. If unsure, please contact the relevant postgraduate Course Coordinator for further details.

Schedule 5: Adjustment Factor

(116) Students whose first language is not English need to provide evidence of their English language proficiency in order to be admitted to courses at ACU. For most courses, ACU uses the list of countries and assessable qualifications published by UAC (University English Language Proficiency Requirements).

(117) For all courses, English language proficiency can be evidenced by one of the following:

  1. demonstrated completion of an English Language Test with a minimum accepted result as set out in the tables below. Any such English language proficiency test must have been completed no earlier than two years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission.
  2. demonstrated current registration with an accredited body that has an English language requirement equivalent to, or higher than, the standards required by the University.

(118) Recognised registrations include:

  1. Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) registration other than Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Health Practice registration;
  2. Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) Teacher registration;
  3. Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) Teacher registration; and
  4. NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) Teacher registration.

(119) English Language Proficiency can also be evidenced by one of the following:

  1. for Initial Teacher Education (ITE) courses, demonstrated successful completion of at least two full-time years of study of a secondary or tertiary qualification at AQF Diploma level or higher, where the medium of study was English and completed no earlier than two years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission.
  2. for all undergraduate Nursing and all undergraduate Midwifery courses demonstrated English language proficiency either by providing a written declaration that English is their primary language or evidence that they have achieved the minimum English Language test results as specified in the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) English language skills registration standards, or through one of the following pathway options: 
    1. the Primary Language Pathway:
      1. evidence of attendance and satisfactory completion of at least six years of primary and secondary education taught and assessed solely in English in a recognised country, including at least two years between years 7 and 12; or
    2. the Test Pathway - results must be within 2 years of enrolling and meet the criteria outlined in the table below.
  3. for all other courses demonstrated successful completion of:
    1. at least one full-time year of study of an Australian secondary or tertiary qualification at AQF Diploma level or higher, and completed no earlier than five years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission; or
    2. demonstrated successful completion of at least one full-time year of study of an overseas qualification equivalent to an Australian secondary or tertiary qualification at AQF Diploma level or higher, where the medium of study was English, and completed no earlier than five years prior to the commencement of the course of study to which the student seeks admission. 

Schedule 6: Equity and Access Schemes

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Admissions Program

(120) Indigenous applicants may be given entry to ACU programs based on their potential to succeed at tertiary study determined via criteria other than selection rank.

ACU Guarantee

(121) Year 12 applicants can receive an at school offer based on Year 11 results undertaken in Australian senior study curriculum. The program is based on calculation of an indicative selection rank including up to 10 adjustment factors. Adjustment factors are determined based on applicant responses across three categories of optional personal statements.

Regional School Adjustment

(122) Applicants from rural and regional schools will automatically receive adjustment factors when applying through their respective Tertiary Admissions Centre.

Consideration for Long Term Educational Disadvantage

(123) Universities Admissions Centre - Education Access Scheme (EAS)

(124) Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre - Special Education Access Scheme (SEAS)

(125) Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre – Educational Access Scheme (EAS).

Veterans Entry Program

(126) Allows veterans with military service records to apply for direct entry and using a selection rank derived from deemed equivalencies for their studies and military service level.

Schedule 7: At School Offers

ACU Guarantee

(127) Year 12 applicants can receive an at school offer based on Year 11 results undertaken in Australian senior study curriculum. The program is based on calculation of an indicative selection rank including up to 10 adjustment factors. Adjustment factors are determined based on applicant responses across three categories of optional personal statements.

Schedule 8: Pathway Programs

Domestic Pathways

Diploma in Educational Studies (Tertiary Preparation)
Diploma in Youth Work
Diploma in Liberal Studies
Diploma in Exercise Science
Diploma in Biomedical Science
Diploma in Nutrition Science
Diploma in Business
Diploma in Information Technology 
Certificate in Liberal Studies
Certificate in Commerce
Certificate in Theology
Foundation Studies Program (from 2021)

International Pathways

Diploma in Educational Studies (Tertiary Preparation)
Diploma in Exercise Science
Diploma in Biomedical Science
Diploma in Nutrition Science
Diploma in Business
Diploma in Information Technology 
Diploma in Liberal Studies
Diploma in Visual Arts and Design
Diploma in Youth Work
Tertiary Preparation Program (Health Sciences)(acceptable only for entry to specified Bachelor degree courses in the Faculty of Health Sciences)
Foundation Studies Program
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Section 28 -   Revisions to this Policy

Date Major, Minor or Editorial Description of Revision(s)
23 May 2018 Minor Revisions in line with Transparency in Admissions Terminology
26 July 2019 Major Revisions as part cyclical review in line with the Academic Board Policy Development and Review Schedule
18 December 2019 Minor Revision to Schedule 3 in line with revised ANMAC standards for Nursing ELP
29 April 2020 Minor Revisions to Schedule 3, Schedule 4 and Schedule 7 in line with current processes
25 November 2020 Minor Consequential change to sections 21.3-21.6 to reflect the changes to the terms suspension and exclusion under the Student Conduct Policy
Amendment to Schedule 3 to update ELP requirements for undergrad Law courses
15 September 2021 Minor Amendments to transfers process, Schedule 3 and consequential amendments to Section 16 addition of academic integrity
1 March 2023  Minor  Amendments to Policy and Procedures following scheduled review including changes to Schedule 4 ELP requirements 
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Section 29 - Associated Information

(128) For related legislation, policies, procedures and guidelines and any supporting resources please refer to the Associated Information tab.