General admission requirements

If you meet the minimum entry requirements, you may be selected for one of our courses. However, meeting the minimum requirements doesn’t guarantee that you will be selected.

You may be offered a place once we have assessed:

  • your formal academic qualifications and results
  • if you meet any course prerequisites
  • your compliance with English language requirements
  • if you meet any legal or administrative requirements (see below)
  • the availability of student places and learning resources.

For some courses, an assessment of your personal capabilities and aptitude is also made.

Visit our Course Search to find out about the specific criteria for entry into individual courses.

Minimum age requirement

Students must be at least 17 years old at the time their course begins to be eligible for entry into any Higher Education course. We may consider exceptions in some circumstances and will take into account your academic record and availability of appropriate support.

Access to internet

Online learning resources and materials are integral to teaching and learning activities and assessment tasks for our courses. All online students must have regular access to an internet-connected computer, capable of communicating with our online systems.

Informed choices

Informed choices statements provide information about essential physical and behavioural abilities, skills or acuities needed to perform assessment tasks and professional placements in a field of study and progress to a career in that field. This information is intended to assist you to decide if you can successfully participate in and complete a course.

We are an inclusive and welcoming environment for people living with a disability, medical condition, mental illness or primary carer responsibilities. Our AccessAbility advisers can provide information about services and reasonable adjustments that may be available to support you to achieve your goals.

English language requirements

All Swinburne students must be able to meet out our English language requirements. You’ll be able to provide evidence of your English language skill if you have:

  • completed the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) or another type of secondary qualification taught in English
  • completed some types of university or vocational education studies (tertiary studies)
  • completed an English language test, such as TOEFL, IELTS, Pearson or C1
  • completed an English language (ELICOS) course
  • lived and worked in an English-speaking country for at least four years (domestic applicants only)

These requirements vary for prospective undergraduate and postgraduate students, depending on your chosen course. For the most up to date English language requirements information, use CourseSearch or see the Entry Requirements for International Students page.

Each Swinburne course has minimum English language requirements that students need to meet to participate in their studies. Refer to the table below for more information or use CourseSearch to find the specific English language requirements for your chosen course.

For local applicants with overseas qualifications, see the Entry Requirements for International Students page.

For UniLink Diplomas

One of:

  • VCE Units 3 & 4: a minimum study score of 20 in English (or equivalent) or 25 in English as an Alternate Language (EAL)
  • An approved study score in a secondary education qualification from an English-speaking country, including:
  • Satisfactory completion of a minimum of two higher education units in Australia or another English speaking country
  • Satisfactory completion of a minimum of two units in an Australian VE Certificate IV, Diploma or Advanced Diploma
  • A STAT minimum written test score of 145* 
  • Completion of secondary school studies in English and four years relevant post-secondary work experience in an English speaking setting, with at least two of those years being full-time work*

For undergraduate courses: associate degrees, bachelor degrees and honours (except education, law, information technology, honours in psychology and professional degree courses)

One of:

  • VCE Units 3 & 4: a minimum study score of 25 in English (or equivalent) or 30 in EAL
  • An approved study score in a secondary education qualification from an English-speaking country, including:
  • Satisfactory completion of a minimum of two higher education units in Australia or another English speaking country
  • Satisfactory completion of a minimum of two units in an Australian VE Certificate IV, Diploma or Advanced Diploma 
  • A STAT minimum written test score of 150*
  • Completion of secondary school studies in English and four years relevant post-secondary work experience in an English speaking setting, with at least two of those years being full-time work*

For undergraduate courses: education, information technology, law, honours in psychology and professional degrees

One of:

  • VCE Units 3 & 4: a minimum study score of 25 in English (or equivalent) or 30 in EAL
  • An approved study score in a senior secondary education qualification in an English-speaking country, including:
  • Satisfactory completion of a minimum of two higher education units in Australia or another English speaking country
  • Satisfactory completion of a minimum of two units in an Australian VE Certificate IV, Diploma or Advanced Diploma

For postgraduate courses: Graduate Certificates

  • Secondary school studies in English and a period of relevant post-secondary work experience in an English-speaking country as specified in the course entry requirements

For postgraduate courses: Graduate Diplomas and Masters

  • Satisfactory completion of an undergraduate degree (AQF 7 or equivalent) in Australia or another English speaking country
*Only specified courses will accept STAT and Work experience as a basis of entry – check Course Search.

Use Course Search to find the English language requirements for your chosen course or see the English entry requirements website for international students.

Individual course admission criteria will identify where prerequisite study needs to have been undertaken within a certain time period.

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Heads up! You may wish to consider applying for the Special Entry Access Scheme

When applying through VTAC, applicants that meet certain criteria are eligible for special consideration through the Special Entry Access Scheme (SEAS). This includes but is not limited to:

  • recognition as Indigenous Australians 
  • studying at a school on Swinburne's under-respresented school list
  • found themselves in finanical or unforseen hardships during their Year 12 studies. 
  • first person in your family to be attending university
Learn more

Admission options

On top of meeting the English language requirement and any prerequisite subject scores Swinburne also assesses applications in a variety of conditions depending on your educational background and/or work history. Information on assessing applications on Australia Year 12 studies can be found here.

The qualifications of Australian applicants who completed secondary or tertiary study overseas are assessed for equivalence to course entry requirements, based on guidelines provided by International Education Online and UK NARIC (National Recognition Information Centre)

Check whether your overseas qualifications meet our academic and English language entry requirements via the international students page.

If you have previous Vocational Education and Training, we can use your results as a basis of admission to an undergraduate course.

We take into consideration whether you completed the course and if your results were graded.

Even if it’s been a while since you were in TAFE or other VE studies (i.e. not within the past seven years), you will be considered for entry. For certain courses, if your VET study was ungraded (only pass/fail) you may have to sit for the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT).

You’ll receive an offer if your study is assessed as meeting the admission requirements for your preferred Swinburne course. If you don’t meet the requirements, you'll be given an alternate course offer or pathway option.

Where course entry requirements include prerequisite subjects, you must present evidence of having successfully acquired the required knowledge and skills through current or previous studies. Individual course admission criteria will identify where that prerequisite study needs to have been undertaken within a certain time period.

You can also apply for academic credit on the basis of your VET results.

Learn more pathways from specific VET courses and entry requirements to degree-level courses on Swinburne’s Course Search.

You could be studying at a different university, then decide to switch to Swinburne. Your results from your previous university will be used to assess whether you can enter an undergraduate course.

We take into consideration your results and whether you completed the course: 

  • If your higher education study (either complete or incomplete) was undertaken in the last seven years, we will consider those results as a basis for admission
  • If your results are from more than seven years ago and you did not complete your university degree, you will be considered for entry, but you may sit the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT) (where STAT is included in specific course admission criteria)
  • If you completed your course more than seven years ago, we will consider whether your results and qualifications are a suitable basis for entry to your chosen course.

Where course entry requirements include prerequisite subjects, you must present evidence of having successfully acquired the required knowledge and skills through current or previous studies.

Individual course admission criteria will identify where that prerequisite study needs to have been undertaken within a certain time period.

You can also apply for apply for academic credit on the basis of your previous Higher Education results. Use our academic credit calculator to see if you may be eligible to have academic credit applied to an undergraduate degree at Swinburne.

Find more information about pathways from other higher education courses and entry requirements to individual courses via Swinburne’s Course Search.

Some undergraduate courses accept applicants based on their relevant work and life experience – see Course search to further details.  Applicants will be asked to provide a detailed Curriculum Vitae, position description/s of relevant current and past employment and letter/s of recommendation from employers.

Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT)

For entry to some undergraduate courses, you may sit the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT) Multiple Choice.

To be eligible for admissions on the basis of the STAT, you must be:

  • a Non-Year 12 applicant (you must not be a current (2020) or recent Year 12 student (or equivalent) within the last 2 years (i.e. 2019 or 2018), and
  • at least 19 years old on 31st December in the year you commence your studies

Swinburne will consider your STAT results if you have:

  • no prior or recent secondary school results (Year 12 or equivalent) or work experience that meet the entry requirements for the course, or
  • no recent TAFE or university results (within the last 7 years) that could be considered for entry, or
  • TAFE or other tertiary results with ungraded assessment (only have pass/fail results)

Your scores from the STAT test will be used to determine your selection rank. 

You must also meet any course prerequisites and additional entry requirements to receive an offer to a preferred course.  Your STAT results may satisfy Maths prerequisites for most courses, except Engineering and Aviation.  STAT Written test results may satisfy English requirements (except Law, Psychology (Honours), Accounting and Information Systems, Information Technology, Professional and Education courses).

Results from your STAT test are valid for two years.

Applicants with recent secondary education

Australian Year 12 students

If you’re currently in Year 12 or have completed Year 12 in the last seven years, you’ll be considered for admission to undergraduate courses primarily based on whether you have successfully completed the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE), or an interstate or international Year 12 qualification.

A decision on whether to select you is usually based is usually based on assessment of your performance in your final years of secondary study, as indicated by an Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR). For more information visit the VTAC website.

If you are studying the International Baccalaureate (IB) in Australia or New Zealand, you will receive a notional ATAR rank, calculated by VTAC, so that your performance can be compared against VCE students.

If you completed your secondary education more than seven years ago or have no formal qualifications, applicants to some undergraduate courses may be assessed for entry on the basis of relevant work and life experience.

We may use a selection rank to assess your suitability for a course.. A selection rank is a recalculated ATAR based on adjustments to your aggregate study score where:

  • you studied selected subjects (as specified for each course in VTAC’s Course Search). If you have achieved study scores of 25 or higher in those subjects, you are eligible to have two to four additional points added to your aggregate study score per relevant area of study.
  • you are eligible under VTAC’s Special Entry Access Scheme (SEAS), which enables special consideration for students with short or long-term educational disadvantage.  
  • your home address is in an outer regional or remote area (as defined by the ASGS Remoteness Classification). We will adjust your aggregate study score by adding two additional points.
  • you participated in our Early Leaders Program.  

SEAS categories are based on personal information, disadvantaged financial background, disability or mental health condition and difficult circumstances.   

Following an assessment of the degree of disadvantage experienced, you may have additional points added to your aggregate study score. Our SEAS calculator provides an indication of the effect of SEAS adjustments on your ATAR.

An ATAR rank doesn’t always tell the whole story, so we can assess students in many ways. Depending on the course, we may ask you for auditions, portfolios, personal statements, aptitude and skills tests and/or interviews.

Head to Course Search for course-specific requirements.

Early Entry Program 2021

For 2021 entry, Swinburne is launching an Early Entry Program that considers more than just the ATAR. 

Learn more
  • Alternative Tertiary Entrance Program (ATEP)

    We also allow entry into our higher education, pathway or vocational education courses without an ATAR. The ATEP program is a collaboration between us and participating high schools. 

  • Mathslink Further

    If you do not have the prerequisite maths subjects for your degree, MathsLink Further is a bridging program that meets the prerequisite in place of VCE Further Mathematics. 

  • MathsLink Methods

    Our MathsLink Methods bridging program meets the prerequisite in place of VCE Mathematical Methods for our Engineering and Aviation Bachelor degrees.

Student profile

The table below gives an indication of the educational background our undergraduate students have come from.

It provides data on all students who commenced undergraduate study in the most relevant recent intake period, including those admitted through all offer rounds, across all Australian campuses, and international students studying in Australia.

Applicant background Semester 1, 2020  
  Number of students Percentage of all students

(A) Higher education study (includes a bridging or enabling course)

1985

24%

(B) Vocational education and training (VET) study

1806

22%

(C) Work and life experience (Admitted on the basis of previous achievement not in the other three categories)

1400

17%

(D) Recent secondary education:

 

 

  • Admitted solely on the basis of ATAR
    (regardless of whether this includes consideration of adjustment factors such as equity or subjects studied)

1966

24%

  • Admitted where both ATAR and additional criteria were considered (e.g. portfolio, audition, extra test, early offer conditional on minimum ATAR)

160

2%

  • Admitted on the basis of other criteria only and ATAR was not a factor (e.g. special consideration, audition alone, schools recommendation scheme with no minimum ATAR requirement)

13

0%

International students

779

10%

All students

8109

100%

Additional resources

Further information for students about admissions is available through the following resources:

To submit an application outcome appeal, or to express grievances about the admission process, refer to the Reviews and Appeals page.

Need a little more clarification?

We understand that the university process can be confusing. If there’s anything you’re unsure of, or if you need some advice regarding university entry requirements, our friendly and knowledgeable team are here to help!

Contact us