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Academics

Fields of Study: Humanities, Social Sciences, Engineering, Science

The University of New South Wales offers a full range of coursework to accommodate your UC major. Fully integrated into the academic and social life at UNSW, you can pursue classes in all kinds of subjects: science, math, architecture and planning, business, economics, engineering and computing, health, psychology, as well as the arts, humanities, and social sciences.

The university offers extensive science, technology, environment, and engineering courses. It is also known for its multidisciplinary programs, which include Asian and Australian studies, gender studies, marine sciences, and media and popular culture.

Unique study opportunities

  • Take classes at Australia’s top art and design school—the UNSW School of Art, Design, and Media.
  • Get involved actively in policy issues and debates within Australia at the UNSW Business School—ranked first among the major Australian universities for its quality of teaching.
  • Engage in a research project that matters to you at one of Australia’s most prestigious research universities.

Language

Language of Instruction: English

Language Study: Optional

Foreign language study is available. Check the university course catalog.

Courses and credit

Requirements While Abroad

To successfully complete this program:

  • Take a full-time course of study:
  • Fall: Three courses for a total of 18 quarter/12 semester UC units.
  • Winter + Spring: Five courses for a total of 30 quarter/20 semester UC units.
  • You may take up to one-third (33%) of your total unit load on a P/NP basis.
  • Courses may transfer as lower or upper division to UC.

Current Program Courses

You will finalize your study plans and register for classes after arrival with assistance from UCEAP. In addition to regular university courses, independent study and internships for academic credit are also an option in this program. Before you enroll in courses, you’ll review the calendar, restrictions, and prerequisites for all courses to ensure success.

Catalogs and resources

  • UNSW Handbook: Review current course descriptions by area of interest.
  • UNSW Timetable: Find a real-time course schedule for specific classes. Tip: the Australian academic year begins in February with Semester 1 (spring), followed in late July by Semester 2 (fall).
  • UCEAP Course Catalog: See a list of courses UC students have taken on this program.
  • Campus Credit Abroad: Learn the types of credit (major, minor, general education, elective) students from your campus received at this location.

Academic culture

To help you acclimate to Australian campus life and culture, there are a few key differences and similarities with UC to be aware of:

  • The Australian semester is longer and has a slower pace than the UC semester or quarter.
  • Students address Australian lecturers and tutors informally by their first name.
  • Similar to UC, the main forms of teaching are lectures (50-500+ students), tutorials (10-25 students), seminars (30+ students; half lecture, half tutorial), and labs/practicals.
  • All lectures are recorded—beware of waiting until the last minute to watch them.
  • In Australia, students are expected to be independent and show initiative. Instructors won't chase you up if you miss classes or assignments.
  • Assignments tend to require heavy research and critical analysis.
  • You’ll need to use Australian English for assignments.

Grades

Australian university grades are criterion-referenced rather than norm-referenced (i.e., curved). This means that your performance on an assignment will be compared to a predefined standard, not to the performance of your classmates. Your lecturer will advise you of this predefined standard via a grading rubric.

Most assessment is due toward the end of the semester. In a semester, it is not uncommon to have your first assignment due in Week 6 and not receive any grades back until Week 8. Finals may be very heavily weighted (40-80% of your final grade). There is usually a study week (called swot vac) between the last week of the semester and the start of the exam period.

UCEAP converts your Australian grades to UC grades. Fall grades are usually available late January to early February. Spring grades are usually available mid-August to mid-September.