What to expect

You’ll find a real sense of freedom when studying at university. 

You'll be given the responsibility to learn in the environment that best suits you. You'll also have the flexibility to study full-time or part-time, and there may be day and night classes available, so you can fit work as well as recreational and social activities around your studies. Activities vary from day to day, student to student depending on your lifestyle.

Did you know?

Every Tuesday and Friday during semester there’s a common lunch hour between 1pm and 2pm. This means you can catch up with friends, enjoy the activities on the Oak Lawn or simply relax without having to worry that fitting in lunch will clash with your classes.

Frequently used terms

When you start university you’re bound to come across a number of terms that may not mean much to you. Here’s a quick guide to some you may or may not already be familiar with.

Bachelor’s degree
This is your first degree and is what you achieve after completing an undergraduate course.
Contact hours
The hours a student is expected to spend in tutorials, lectures or labs.
Faculty
A faculty is a university division responsible for administrating teaching and learning in a particular area of knowledge.
Faculties include schools and centres within that teaching area.
Fresher
Informal term for freshman: a first year student at university.
Full-time study
At least 75 per cent study load (that is, three or four units) per semester.
Grade Point Average (GPA)
An index of academic performance calculated by converting a student’s percentage marks/grades.
HECS and HECS-HELP
This allows eligible students in a Commonwealth-supported place to defer payment of their student
contribution by taking out an interest-free government loan.  
Compulsory repayment of HECS and HECS-HELP loan begins when annual income exceeds a minimum threshold amount.
Repayments are made through additional tax being deducted.
Honours
An additional year of full-time (or equivalent part-time) study undertaken on completion of a bachelor’s degree.
Includes coursework and a research dissertation.
Lab
A class that takes place in a laboratory.
Labs are practical classes involving experiments, investigation, construction, observation or testing.
Lecture
A class which involves the presentation of a particular topic, idea or subject to a large group of students.
Lectures normally run for about 45 minutes and many are recorded so you can revise later.
Level
A ranking applied to a unit that indicates the amount of prior knowledge or maturity of learning
required to study a unit successfully. A three-year undergraduate degree consists of Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 units.
Major
An area of specialisation that comprises an approved sequence of eight units within an undergraduate degree course.
Mature-age student
A person aged 20 years or over at 1 March in the year they intend to begin study at university.
Part-time study
Enrolling in less than 75 per cent study load (that is one or two units) per semester.
Postgraduate
Higher-level university study undertaken upon the completion of a bachelor’s degree.
Prerequisite
A subject or condition a person must satisfy before gaining entry to a unit or course.
Tutorial
A small class involving discussion that is facilitated by a tutor on a particular topic or idea
(usually what has previously been presented in a lecture).
Undergraduate
A term that refers to a university student who is studying towards their first degree (bachelor’s degree).
Unit
A subject usually studied for the duration of one semester.
Units normally involve different classes such as lectures, tutorials, seminars and labs.