What is a Major?

A Major is a sequence of courses designed to provide thorough training in one specified discipline or specialisation. Students will begin in introductory courses in their Major and move on to more advanced courses as they progress through their degree. In the Bachelor of Science degree students study at least one Major. A Major accounts for approximately half the units of credit of the total program. Note: it is easy to change your major throughout your degree.


Do Science degrees have pre-requisites?

No. Admission is based on overall academic merit, not the specific subjects you have previously studied. Instead, we have what we refer to as Assumed Knowledge (see below).


What is Assumed Knowledge?

For some degree programs and first-year (Stage 1) courses, it is assumed that students, through their high school studies (or equivalent study), will have achieved a level of knowledge of the subject area that is considered desirable for successful university-level study. Students without this level of assumed knowledge are encouraged to apply and will not be prevented from enrolling, but may be placed at a disadvantage. We strongly advise such students to undertake a bridging course or other appropriate preparation before commencing their university studies.

UNSW also offers introductory level courses that can be taken in Stage 1 of your program; this may involve taking summer semester courses in order to complete the degree in the prescribed full-time period, or may extend the total time for completion.


How do I apply?

Visit our How to Apply webpage for application information.

All undergraduate applicants are required to apply through the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC). Main Round applications close at the end of September every year, although late applications are accepted. Visit their website for all the details and dates for applying to study at UNSW.


What if I am not a high school leaver?

We welcome non-school leavers in the Faculty of Science undergraduate programs. The University will assess your potential for university study based on prior learning. Visit the Admissions website for further details.


Can I transfer from one Science degree to another?

Yes. Current undergraduate students can apply via myUNSW to transfer between most UNSW undergraduate programs.  In most cases you do not have to apply through the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC). Most, but not all Internal Program Transfers are available for both semester 1 and 2.  The service is free and simple to use.

A range of internal transfer options is available:

  • Transfer from one program to another (e.g. BE to BSc);
  • Transfer within the same Faculty (e.g. BE in Computer Engineering to BE in Chemical Engineering);
  • Transfer between single degree and dual degree programs.

Click here for more information on internal program transfer, including program availability within the Faculty of Science.


What is an Honours year?

The Honours year is a fourth year of study - the final year of Advanced Science programs, or an optional extra year for other Science programs. Admission to Honours generally requires a credit average in a student's second and third years of study.

In the Honours year students undertake a combination of advanced coursework and a research project. They work with a research team at UNSW, under the guidance of a supervisor, to reach the forefront of knowledge in their particular area.


Can I start my degree in the middle of the year?

Yes. Most but not all Science programs have a mid-year entry. Check the online Handbook entry for the particular program you are interested in.


Can I defer my enrolment?

Yes. Students offered a place must first accept the offer, and then apply for deferral. Your place will be kept for you for up to 12 months. Contact the Admissions Office on 02 9385 3228.

Still have questions?