Frequently Asked Questions

Want to find out more about UNSW Sydney? Discover what programs we offer, learn more about entry requirements and read about what financial assistance options are available in the FAQs below.

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  • At UNSW, we don’t have prerequisite courses. Instead, we have assumed knowledge.  

    This means that your academics will teach you assuming that you have studied certain subjects (or equivalent). Receiving an offer to study at UNSW is not dependent on you having studied that subject, we will only look at your Selection Rank (your raw ATAR plus any Adjustment Factors you may be eligible for).

    Bridging courses are a great way to bring you up to speed before you start your degree. At UNSW we offer bridging courses in Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry. The Undergraduate Guide lists assumed knowledge for each degree. 

  • There are three adjustment factor schemes at UNSW available for domestic high school leavers:

    • The HSC Plus scheme rewards up to five points for strong performance in relevant subjects to the degree/s you are applying for. No separate application is required, and you can use our HSC Plus calculator online.
    • The Elite Athletes, Performers and Leaders Program recognises achievements outside of the classroom and you may be eligible for up to five points. You'll need to submit an application to UNSW providing supporting documentation. Applications are now closed and open in August each year. 
    • The Educational Access Scheme (EAS) is designed to level the playing field and help students who have experienced educational disadvantage receive an offer. EAS applications are submitted via the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC). Application deadlines will vary per offer round, you'll need to refer to UAC’s key dates for more information.

    Adjustment factors can add points to your ATAR to increase your selection rank, and across all three of these schemes, a cumulative maximum of 12 points can be used toward 2023 admission. Not every degree is eligible under each scheme, hence it’s important to note which ones you might be eligible for and which ones require additional applications.  

  • UNSW has the Gateway Early Conditional Offer Scheme, which is for domestic students who attend a Gateway Partner School or have a home address which is in the lowest 25% of socio-economic advantage in Australia according to SEIFA criteria. When you apply for your undergraduate admission, UAC will let you know whether you meet the criteria.

    The Gateway Admission Pathway is an early conditional offer to UNSW for Year 12 students that is administered through the UAC Schools Recommendation Scheme. Your application will be assessed on the basis of your personal statement and your school’s ratings of your aptitudes and performance in relevant areas of study. If your application is successful, you will receive an early conditional offer with an ATAR entry requirement up to 15 points lower than the advertised Guaranteed Entry rank. Once you receive an ATAR result that is the same or higher than the requirement set for you in your early conditional offer, you’ll receive a firm offer to that UNSW degree, provided it is your highest eligible preference. 

    Applications for 2023 early conditional offers are now closed. If you were eligible but missed the application deadline, we recommend applying for UAC’s Education Access Scheme, where you may be eligible for up to 10 adjustment factors for any UNSW degree.

  • Double degrees allow you to focus on two areas of expertise, giving you more knowledge, skills, and career options. And despite the name, it doesn’t mean double the time or workload. Because you’ll only complete the core courses from each degree, you’ll graduate sooner. For example, the Bachelor of Commerce is 3 years, and the Bachelor of Arts is 3 years. If studied in combination, the overall duration is 4 years, and you’ll graduate with two certificates to recognise the two qualifications you’ve earned.

    A double degree allows students to find their niche, having the option to choose from complementary or contrasting degrees to give you sought-after knowledge and skills. They will also give you an edge in the job market over other graduates as you will be able to bring unique skillsets and approach problems in new ways.

    Please note not all degrees are compatible, and double degrees vary in length from 4 – 6.7 years. For a full list of compatible degrees and duration, please explore the UNSW Degree Finder.

  • A major is an area that you choose to study in-depth during your degree to become your area of specialisation. For example, if you choose to study the Bachelor of Science, you may decide to complete a major in genetics and hence you would graduate with a Bachelor of Science (Genetics). You will complete a sequence of courses to meet the requirements for your major and be recognised as having that specialised knowledge.  

    A minor is a shorter sequence of courses and will give you some level of specialisation in a given area, however not at the level of a major. Many degrees, though not all, will require you to select at least one major, and many generalist degrees will also offer you the opportunity to complete a minor. For information regarding the approved majors for our courses, you can check the Undergraduate Guide.

  • The newly built Light Rail service has made UNSW more accessible than ever. If you are coming from Central Station or the CBD you can catch either the L2 Randwick service to the UNSW High St stop, opposite our Gate 9 entrance, or the L3 Kingsford service to the UNSW Anzac Parade stop, located at the Lower Campus entrance. 

    There are also several bus services that you can catch to campus. If you need to travel between the Kensington and Paddington campuses, you can catch UNSW’s Courtesy Bus during term.

    If public transport isn’t your thing, there are a number of parking options on and around campus.

  • Yes! UNSW’s Careers and Employment office will link you with potential employers and help you develop the skills you need for your career beyond the classroom. They offer job opportunities, application resources, career planning and networking events to expand your future career path. The UNSW Careers and Employment service is available for up to 18 months following your graduation.

    Visit UNSW Careers for more information.

  • UNSW offers a range of apartments and colleges. For a complete guide, please visit the Accommodation website where you can find out the locations, costs, amenities, support services and information on how to apply. Feel free to contact the UNSW Student Accommodation team at or on +61 2 9385 4346 to have a chat about your options.

    If you want to get an idea of the day-to-day costs of living in Sydney, please see this handy Cost-of-Living guide.

  • There are a number of different scholarships available to high school leavers including merit, sporting, rural and equity scholarships. Check your eligibility for different programs at UNSW Scholarships.

    A notable scholarship offered by UNSW is The Co-op Program - a specific career development scholarship program available in select degrees, that enables students to form life changing connections. Co-op students undertake up to 18 months of relevant experience with industry sponsors in a series of diverse placements during their studies. Students who secure a place in the Co-op Program are awarded a tax-free scholarship of $19,600 per year, guaranteed for four years.   

    The application process is competitive, please refer to the Co-op Program website for further information. Please note that only domestic applicants are eligible to apply.

    Equity Scholarships are awarded to students from low socio-economic backgrounds and require a separate application via the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC). Application deadlines are dependent on offer rounds. Visit UAC's key dates calendar for up-to-date information.

    Co-op Program Scholarships and most UNSW Scholarships for the 2023 intake are now closed. Applications for 2024 applicants will open from July 2023. Please visit the UNSW Scholarships website to apply and check the key dates.

  • UNSW offers an extensive range of extra-curricular activities for students of all walks of life. These include joining clubs and societies, sporting teams or volunteering programs run by UNSW’s student organisation, Arc.  

    Clubs and societies are an excellent way to get social, get active and make the most of your time at uni.  

    There are 300 clubs and societies built around areas such as culture, sport, hobbies and degrees. So, you’re spoilt for choice! For a full list of clubs and to check out more about Arc, visit the Arc website. If you think there’s something missing, you can even start your own club! 

    UNSW also has a fantastic sporting community spanning all levels, from social competitions all the way up to Olympic level. We offer an abundance of charity and philanthropic opportunities you can be a part of throughout your degree. To find out more about the social side of university, visit Arc.

  • Classes are back on campus, and the atmosphere is lively and full of activity. The Australian and NSW public health efforts, as well as UNSW safety measures, mean that if you choose to study on campus it can be social, lively and safe, while enjoying all the benefits of face-to-face learning.

    We plan to offer as many face-to-face classes as possible in Term 1, while also offering online classes for our students who cannot yet join us on campus.

    Visit our Information for Students page for more information.

  • There are two ways of applying for a postgraduate degree at UNSW. While for the majority of programs you can apply through our Apply Online portal, some programs require an application through Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) 

    Application for programs within the School of Population Health, Juris Doctor and the Master of Teaching (Primary and Secondary) are made through Universities Admissions Centre (UAC)

    Applications for the Term 1 2023 intake are now closed. Applications for Term 2 for the School of Population Health degrees are open with an on-time deadline of the 30th of April. Applications for the Term 3 intake of the Juris Doctor are open with an on-time closing date of the 9th of June. See the UAC website for key dates and the UAC PG course description for the final closing date.

    To be considered for an offer for all our other programs, you will need to submit a formal application through our Apply Online portal. Applications for Term 1 have now closed. The on-time closing date for the Term 2 2023 intake is the 31st of March. Applications submitted after this date are still accepted, subject to available places. The on-time closing date for the Term 3 2023 intake is the 31st of July. 

    For all our other programs through our Apply Online portal, the on-time closing date for programs for 2023 are:

    • Term 2 – 31 March

    • Term 3 – 31 July 

    Applications submitted after this date are still accepted, subject to available places. To learn more about how to apply for Postgraduate study at UNSW check out our article on submitting your application.

  • UNSW offers an array of Postgraduate programs available – so you can choose a course that is right for you and your career. 

    • Graduate Certificate

    • Graduate Diploma  

    • Master’s 

    Our Postgraduate courses are flexible, and students can choose how many credits they take per term, which would vary the completion time of the course. If you decided to study a Graduate Certificate, you can articulate to a higher-level qualification upwards from: Graduate Certificate > Graduate Diploma > Masters depending on the course. 

  • Most offers for our postgraduate degrees are based on academic merit. Some programs also look at relevant professional experience. For all entry requirements you can refer to our degree finder.

  • Yes, at UNSW we understand that most postgraduate students are juggling work as well as other commitments whilst studying. Flexible study options such as online learning, evening classes and intensive courses can help you fit study into your life as you reap the benefits of gaining an extra qualification. 

    Learn how you can balance work, family & study whilst studying a postgraduate qualification at UNSW.

    Learn how you can balance work, family & study whilst studying a postgraduate qualification at UNSW.

  • The time of our Postgraduate program classes varies program to program, however most programs offer classes in the late afternoon or evening. Get in touch with our team to learn more about the class schedules for our degrees

  • Yes, as a Postgraduate student you can study part time if your program allows. You are required to enrol in a minimum of one course per term to be considered a part time student.

    To find a course that’s right for you, visit: For more tips, check-out our article on how to succeed in your Postgraduate studies.

  • You can apply to have previous study from another institution or another UNSW degree program recognised, and the credit transferred to your current degree program at UNSW. Credit transfer is also known as 'advanced standing' or Recognition for Prior Learning (RPL). 

    As part of the UNSW Recognition of Prior Learning policy, students may be offered credits for courses amounting to a maximum of 50% of their degree requirements. However, this will be assessed on a case-by-case basis. Credit can only be awarded for courses completed no more than 10 years prior.

  • Applications directly to UNSW 

     Applications submitted by Apply Online are prioritised by term and if additional documentation is required, there will be delays in receiving an outcome.  Please rest assured we are working to process all applications as quickly as possible.

    Applications via UAC 

    Postgraduate UAC offers for Term 2 are released on a rolling basis. The assessment of preferences for Fee-paying places can take up to three weeks to process. The assessment of preferences for CSP can take longer as this is assigned on academic merit basis and the places are limited in each program.  

    Applications for the Term 3 intake will be assessed from May onwards.

  • Whilst the majority of postgraduate places at UNSW are Domestic Fee Paying,  many programs do have an allocation of Commonwealth Supported Funding and Common Wealth Supported Places (CSPs). CSPs are usually limited and applicants are not guaranteed a CSP if they are granted an offer of admission.  CSPs can take longer as this is assigned on academic merit basis. 

    If you’re applying for a program through Apply Online portal, you will automatically be considered for a Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP). If apply through UAC you will need to specifically apply for a CSP when doing your preferences. 

    Find out if your program of interest offers CSPs on Degree Finder and searching via the ‘Fees and Scholarships’ tab. The list of programs with available CSPs can be found here.

    Programs not listed here have no Commonwealth supported funding and are Domestic Fee Paying only. If you are a Domestic Fee-Paying student, you may be eligible for FEE-HELP, but you’re not eligible for the subsidised tuition under Commonwealth support. 

  • We have various scholarships available for postgraduate students at UNSW. Find out more on our Scholarships website.

  • You can defer your fees when you enrol at UNSW, if you are eligible to receive HECS-HELP or FEEHELP; a loan that uses the combined HELP loan limit to pay all or part of your tuition fees. 

    Most of the postgraduate places at UNSW are full-fee paying. However, there are certain programs which have an allocation of Commonwealth support funding. These places are limited in each program. You can find a list of CSP programs here. Please note an offer of admission does not guarantee a Commonwealth supported place.

    For more information read our useful article on how to finance your masters degree.

  • UNSW's postgraduate degrees are designed by academic and industry leaders to meet evolving industry requirements and create future-ready graduates. Whether you are you looking to up-skill or switch careers a postgraduate qualification will enable you to remain competitive in the ever-changing workforce.  

    The 2022 QS World University Rankings: Graduate Employability reviewed 500 universities, placed UNSW third in Australia and 32nd in the world for graduate employability. A postgraduate degree may also boost your earning potential and improve your employability* 

    A postgraduate degree at UNSW enables you to meet like-minded peers and grow your professional network; and enables you to take on the future with a greater sense of confidence. 


  • UNSW’s postgraduate offering includes face to face, online and hybrid degrees. Find out more about the delivery mode of your program via  Degree Finder.

    We are now welcoming students back to campus for classes. While there is every intention to return to as much in-person teaching and learning as possible, online options will continue to be provided where required. 

    Any arrangements will also be subject to public health orders. You can find the latest information about our safe return to campus plan at the UNSW COVID-19 website.

  • Come back as soon as you can. We miss you.  

    If you are an international student on a student visa you will need to be here from the start of Term 2 2023 with classes commencing on 29 May 2023.  

    Through Term 1, 2023, we will maintain support for students who are still unable to join us in-person and help to ensure that you have time to make any required adjustments to your living arrangements in preparation for Term 2, 2023. 

  • Yes, if you start in T1 2023 you can start your studies online. In most cases, you will find your compulsory core courses online, and you will have a choice of elective courses.

    Some courses require specialist equipment or meeting standards for external accreditation and must be studied in person. If your program includes these courses, we may not be able to deliver them online.

    From Term 2 2023, students holding a student visa must enrol in at least one in-person course per term and complete no less than two thirds of their study face-to-face. All students should plan to join us in Sydney before the start of Term 2, 2023.

    For more information, contact the Nucleus: Student Hub.

  • If you are starting online in Term 1 2023 due to travel restrictions in your country, we encourage you to apply for a student visa regardless. This will ensure you can come to Sydney as soon as you a free to do so.
    If you’re planning to apply for a 485 Temporary Graduate visa, you’re required to maintain a student visa for the duration of your studies (including if you’re starting online from your home country).

    We encourage you to apply for your visa for the commencement of your studies, even if you are starting from your home country. A valid student visa during that time will count toward your post study working rights.

  • Students are not required to submit a separate application for studying outside of Australia unless they are planning to reduce their study load. If you’re not able to enrol in 48 units of credit (UOC) for the year, you’ll need to apply for a reduced study load. For example, if you’re only going to complete 6UOC in Term 1 you would apply for a reduced study load.

  • Australia’s pre-departure COVID-19 testing requirements for passengers arriving from China ceased on 11 March 2023. This means travellers from China are no longer required to conduct a COVID-19 test before their trip or to present a negative test result when travelling to Australia.

    UNSW is excited to welcome Chinese students to join us on campus in 2023. For the latest travel information from China, please visit the Smart Traveller website.

  • What if I cannot travel to Australia before the start of Term 1?

    Please don't worry. You need to take all reasonable steps to travel to UNSW as soon as possible – even if this means you will need to commence your Term 1 classes remotely and may arrive in Australia after the start of term. You may continue to take classes online while you are going through the relevant procedures to return to Australia. Please keep detailed records and documentation that demonstrates your effort to return to Australia as close to the start of Term 1 as possible.

    What if my Australian student visa has not yet been issued, my flight is cancelled or I can’t secure accommodation?

    If your visa is not issued before the start of Term 1, your flight is cancelled, or your accommodation cannot be booked, you are advised to keep the evidence of the date your visa is granted (i.e. your visa grant letter), flight cancellation email, and other relevant supporting documents and submit them together with your application for accreditation by the CSCSE in order to pass their accreditation successfully. CSCSE is mindful of the difficult task of returning to Australia this close to the start of Term 1.

    What if I am currently enrolled in online classes and now need face-to-face classes?

    Adjust your course enrolment to in-person options as soon as you have a confirmed travel date. You can adjust your enrolment and timetable through myUNSW through Week 1 of Term 1 (Deadline: 11:59pm 19 February). If you do not have confirmed travel plans to Sydney, with an arrival date before the start of Term 1, we recommend that you maintain your enrolment in online courses. If you have any difficulty finding in-person options you should contact The Nucleus who can talk you through your options.

    What if there are no face-to-face class options for me? 

    We understand this would be frustrating. Our Term 1 online class schedules were originally planned around travel restrictions, so this is a challenging pivot. If you’ve checked the Class Timetable and there are no in-person options to enrol in, you can continue studying in an online mode whilst you return to Australia. Please keep all relevant documentation and advice issued by UNSW and submit this together with your application for certification – CSCSE will evaluate your case accordingly.

    Term 1 2023 will be my final term, do I still need to return to Australia?

    If you anticipate completing your degree at the end of Term 1, a letter confirming Term 1 2023 as your final term of study will be available on completion of your studies. If you are unable to return to Australia for Term 1, please keep the relevant documentary evidence and submit it together with your application for accreditation with CSCSE.

    What if I cannot find suitable accommodation in Australia?  

    We understand it can be difficult to find suitable student accommodation at short notice and we are working to open more rooms on campus where possible. There are also alternative off-campus options students may explore, including independent student accommodation providers or independent rentals of rooms, apartments or houses. Please see here for a full list of accommodation options and off-campus providers that UNSW recommends.

  • Once you have submitted your application you will be able to easily track its progress via your Apply Online account. You’ll also be able to upload any additional documents we need. Once you have provided all the necessary documentation, it should take two to three weeks for UNSW to assess your application.

  • We recognise the challenges with the timetabling of classes and assessments to match different global time zones. This is particularly true in courses where the students are spread across many different regions in the world. If this issue is likely to affect you, after enrolment, please contact your course convenor in the first instance.

  • If you have completed one or more semesters/terms, and you need to take a break from your studies, you can apply for program leave. Program leave is available for up to one year, more in very exceptional circumstances.

    You may choose to defer the start of your study until the next available intake. If you choose to do so, your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) will be cancelled, and you’ll need to accept your new offer for the next intake. Once you accept your new offer a new CoE will be issued.   

    Please check the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) system for your visa end date, updated details and conditions.

  • You can apply to have previous study from another institution or another UNSW degree program recognised, and the credit transferred to your current degree program at UNSW. This is known as recognition for prior learning (RPL). Please find instructions on how to apply with RPL here.

  • Yes! Follow the link below to connect directly with UNSW International students. You can ask them about their degree, campus life or why they decided to study at UNSW Sydney.

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