- Academic skills resources
- OUA offers students the option of three study assistance resources:
- Academic transcript
- See Record of Results
A unit or course that can be counted towards or form part of a formal qualification from a university or TAFE.
- Australian Higher Education Graduate Statement (AHEGS)
- Australian Higher Education Graduate Statement (AHEGS) is a supplementary statement to the testamur and record of results when a student graduates with a degree that provides additional information to enhance understanding of the qualification by students, employers, industry, professional associations and internationally. It includes the following information:
- Description of the course from which the student has graduated including admission requirements, credit points and structure, language of instruction and external accreditation for which graduates are eligible
- Results in units which contribute towards the award
- Information on the Australian higher education sector
- The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) level of the student's course
- Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)
- The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) is the national policy for regulated qualifications in Australian education and training. It incorporates the qualifications from each education and training sector into a single comprehensive national qualifications framework. It was first introducted in 1995.
- See Qualification.
- Bachelor's degree
- When a student successfully completes an undergraduate university degree, for example a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Business, this is the qualification they receive. A Bachelor is usually the first university degree that students complete. Most Bachelor degrees consist of 24 units of study.
- Bridging unit
- For students who need a little extra help, these non-award units are designed to help develop knowledge and skills in foundation areas such as mathematics, science, English language and academic writing. They also cover the particular requirements of e-learning students may want to brush up on before commencing university study. In some cases students will take Bridging units early on in their study to help keep on track.
There are many Bridging units available and vary in length according to your needs. They are coded UNL (available at any time; self-paced), PREP (available for support at particular stages in your academic preparation; tutor-supported) or IELTS (English language preparation). Note: Academic credit is not given for Bridging units.
- Census Date
- This is the deadline date after which students are responsible for their Commonwealth assistance (FEE-HELP, VET FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP) loans or the cost of their unit. After the Census Date students cannot receive a refund or a recredit of their debt unless they can demonstrate Special Circumstances.
- A Certificate is a short qualification offered at higher education and TAFE level. If a student decides not to complete the entire qualification, there are a small number of undergraduate qualifications that offer an early exit point at Certificate level.
- A co-requisite unit is one that must be studied prior to, or at the same time as, the unit to which it is attached. Co-requisites ensure that students build their knowledge and progress through their studies appropriately. Students may apply for a waiver from a co-requisite if they have completed equivalent study elsewhere. Co-requisites are listed (where applicable) under the 'Prerequisites' section of the unit description page.
- This is a set minimum of specific units that all students must attain before they complete their qualification to ensure graduates attain certain knowledge in their study area. For example, the Macquarie University Bachelor of Arts requires students to undertake a coherency consisting of three units in order to complete their qualification.
- Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN)
- The Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) is issued by providers and contains information & details of studies enrolled with government funding assistance. CAN notices for FEE-HELP will be issued by OUA whereas VET FEE-HELP and HECS-HELP notices are issued directly by the Providers.
- Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support Number (CHESSN)
- The CHESSN is a unique number issued by the higher education provider to students with a FEE-HELP/HECS-HELP loan. You can find your CHESSN listed on your FEE-HELP/HECS-HELP loan. You can find your CHESSN listed on your Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN). You need to provide your CHESSN when enquiring about or paying a loan with the Australian Taxation Office.
- Conditional Prerequisite
- A conditional prerequisite is a unit that must be studied prior to another unit to which it is attached. If enrolling in a unit with a conditional prerequisite, your enrolment will only stand on the proviso that you receive a successful pass grade in the conditional prerequisite unit. In the event that you do not complete the conditional prerequisite unit successfully, you may be required to re-attempt the failed prerequisite. This is to ensure that you build your knowledge and progress through your studies appropriately. Students may apply for a prerequisite waiver from a conditional prerequisite if they have completed equivalent study elsewhere. Prerequisites are listed where applicable under the 'Prerequisites' section of the unit description page.
- A unit with continuous availability is open for enrolment all year round. You can enrol and start studying at any time.
- Core unit
- This is a compulsory unit that students must pass in order to meet the requirements of a degree or other qualification. Most undergraduate qualifications have core units and elective units. See also elective unit.
A provider university may apply credit when there is recognition of prior learning in an equivalent area at another education institution. Credit for previous study can only be granted by the provider university through which the student intends to graduate. All credit is granted at the discretion of the provider university. Students who have successfully completed units from different OUA providers that are in accordance with a degree pathway shown in the OUA Handbook or website will be given credit for the degrees listed.
- Credit card
- Credit cards accepted are VISA or Mastercard. Secure online credit card payments can be made in My study centre, via the Unpaid units tab of the My courses and units page, or by calling a Student Advisor. See Upfront payment for further information.
- Credit points
- Credit points are the number of units of credit granted towards a qualification. These are tallied on the basis of a qualification or unit(s) previously completed in a qualification with an Australian university, TAFE course, or equivalent.
See also EFTSL.
- Credit transfer
If you have undertaken part of a relevant accredited TAFE course with an Australian University, TAFE Institute or Private Registered Training Organisation (RTO) you may be eligible to receive credit for any successfully completed Units. If requesting credit transfer you will be required to provide relevant supporting documentation. Such documentation may include certified copies of qualifications, testamurs and/or academic transcripts (credit transfer may also be referred to as 'advanced standing').
- This is a qualification or award conferred by a university that signifies the recipient has satisfactorily completed a course of study. See also Bachelor's Degree and Master's degree.
- Delivery method
- OUA uses four primary methods used to deliver instructional information e.g. study materials to the student fully online; web dependent; web supplemented; or print only.
- Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR)
- DEEWR was the Commonwealth Government agency that formerly oversaw Commonwealth funding of education and training including student assistance schemes such as FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP. It was replaced in December 2011 by the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIISRTE).
- Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIISRTE)
- DIISRTE is the Commonwealth Government agency that now oversees Commonwealth funding of education and training including student assistance schemes such as FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP. It was established in December 2011, replacing DEEWR.
- A Diploma is a qualification offered at TAFE level. A Diploma often follows a Certificate. A small number of Bachelors' degrees also offer an early exit point at Diploma level.
- eCAN is an online or electronic Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN). See Commonwealth Assistance Notice for more information. Students are able to access their ecan notification for FEE-HELP assistance by logging on to My study centre while students accessing HECS-HELP will receive their eCAN notification directly from their provider.
- Elective unit
This is a non-compulsory or 'free choice' unit. As each degree is structured differently and can be made up of elective and compulsory units, students need to check the degree outline for more information. Compare core unit.
- Enrolment statement
- see Statement of Enrolments
- Equivalent Full Time Study Load (EFTSL)
- The EFTSL is the measure of the study load and indicates the number of hours you are likely to spend on a unit. While the study load weighting as applied to a unit can vary between units, most undergraduate units are 0.125 EFTSL and require 10-12 hours per week of study. A load of 0.250 (usually two units) in a term is equivalent to full time study. Check your unit page for EFTSL.
- FEE-Higher Education Loan Program (FEE-HELP) is a Commonwealth Government loan scheme that gives eligible students the chance to defer payment of their unit fees. Repayments are made through the tax system according to income. Read FEE-HELP for more information.
- Fee Band
- This is a scale used to calculate fees for each unit. Fee bands apply to groups of selected undergraduate units. Higher band numbers indicate higher fees for those units. OUA study areas are classified in the following bands:
Band 1 - Arts and Social Sciences
Band 2 - Science, IT and Mathematics
Band 3 - Business
Please note: These are not necessarily identical to the Bands used by (DIISRTE) to regulate Commonwealth subsidised fees. For more information, including the schedule of fees, see: unit fees.
- Fees (current and planned)
- The unit fees for the current year of study are displayed on the unit page. The fees displayed for the next year of study are indicative only, based on the unit pricing for the current year of study, and are subject to change. No reliance should be place on these indicative prices. Final pricing for the next year of study will be available in October.
- Forward planning
- Forward planning is the ability to plan enrolments for the next calendar year. You can add units to your Study Cart and, from the Study Cart, choose if you want to study a unit this year or next year. Units assigned to next year are forward planned, and are subject to change.
- Forward planning availability
- The availability of forward planned units is determined based on the availability of the current unit for enrolment. This availability is subject to change, and will not be confirmed until late November of the current calendar year.
- Fully online
- This is one of four delivery methods, in which all educational content, learning activities, assessment and support services for a unit are delivered online.
- Graduate Certificate
- A Graduate Certificate is a short higher education qualification taught at graduate rather than undergraduate level. They are sometimes called a Postgraduate Certificate if they have as a prerequisite a completed undergraduate study in the same field.
- Graduate Diploma
This graduate qualification is normally taken after a Graduate Certificate or Bachelor's degree. If successfully awarded, it is possible for a Graduate Diploma student to progress to a Master's degree without having received Honours with the Bachelor's degree. A Graduate Diploma usually consists of between six and eight units of study. It is sometimes referred to as a Postgraduate Diploma if it has as a prerequisite successful undergraduate study in the same field.
- Graduate outcomes
- These are the qualities that each university aims to develop in its graduates. Common graduate outcomes include the ability to solve problems and think critically, communicate effectively and apply ethical standards.
- HECS-HELP is a Commonwealth Government loan scheme available to eligible students enrolled in Commonwealth supported places. This loan scheme assists students with their student contribution payments and is a cost-effective way to fund your course studies. Read HECS-HELP for more information.
- Higher Education
Often called 'tertiary education' higher education is the education provided by a university or other education organisation approved to issue university-level qualifications. Tertiary education is also used to cover TAFE education.
- Higher Education Provider
- A higher education provider is any institution that provides higher education qualifications, including universities and other approved organisations.
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
- This is an international, standardised test of English language proficiency. It assesses the language ability of overseas students who want to study at university level in Australia. For those students who are unsure of their language skills, OUA offers an IELTS online preparation program to help prepare for the IELTS test. See also bridging units.
- Invigilated exam
- An exam that is conducted under formal examination conditions and supervised by an exam invigilator. Most end-of-term invigilated exams are organised by OUA Exam Services and conducted across a worldwide exam venue network.
- This is an approved examination supervisor who is responsible for ensuring that an exam is taken in accordance with university requirements and rules, and for returning completed exams to the university for marking.
- Learning Skills Units
- See Quick Skills Modules
- Level of Study
Level of study is usually a three-part classification that indicates the difficulty of a (mostly undergraduate) degree over the years of study required. Some undergraduate courses include a fourth level of study. The study levels guide a student's progression through that degree as follows:
Level 1 - Introductory units within a discipline. They often do not have prerequisites, unless it is a sequential course of study.
Level 2 - Intermediate units or principal areas of study within a discipline. They may include prerequisites (in the form of Level 1 units).
Level 3 - Advanced units providing in-depth study within a specialised topic. They often have prerequisites or assume readiness for advanced level study.
Level 4 - Specialised advanced units applicable only to select undergraduate courses.
- Macquarie Gateway to Academic Literacy
- For students who want to improve their writing skills this is an excellent program. It is an interactive, online academic skills resource designed to help students develop skills needed to write academic essays and reports. The best news is that students have unlimited access to the Gateway.
- This indicates a subject or series of units in which a student specialises during their university degree. Completing a major usually involves undertaking approximately six to eight units in a particular study area across Levels 1, 2 and 3. A major can also be called a 'stream'.
- Mandatory prerequisite
- A mandatory prerequisite is a unit that must be completed before enrolment in a subsequent unit can be allowed. Mandatory prerequisites are present when study must be structured to build knowledge through a series of units, or where a specific level of prior knowledge or expertise will be assumed. Students who have completed prior study equivalent to a mandatory prerequisite can apply for a waiver from that prerequisite. Mandatory prerequisites are listed (where applicable) under the 'Prerequisites' section of the unit description page.
- Master's degree
A Master's degree is a postgraduate degree that usually consists of between eight and 12 units of study depending on their length or complexity and takes about two years to complete. Students normally need to complete an undergraduate degree before commencing a Master's degree. Also called a 'graduate degree'.
- A minor indicates a subject area of secondary specialisation within a university degree. A minor requires fewer units of study than a major, but enables an additional study area to be included in a degree. A minor normally consists of between two and four units. Compare this with a major.
- Money order/cheque
- Copies of the automated tax invoice email must be attached to cheque or money order payments. Cheques or money orders are payable to "Open Universities Australia" and should be addressed to GPO Box 5387, Melbourne, VIC, 3001 Australia. See Upfront payment for further information.
- A course of study that does not lead or count toward a formal university qualification.
- Non-invigilated exam
- An exam or test that does not require supervision or need to be conducted in a formal exam venue. Non-invigilated exams are most often online examinations that students can conduct in their own home or any other convenient location. There may be a requirement to complete the examination at a designated time.
- OUA ID
- A unique OUA student number is issued to every student. The OUA ID is displayed on the OUA Student Card and on the Letter of Confirmation and should be used when contacting OUA.
- Payment statement
- see Statement of Payments
- Postgraduate Certificate/Diploma
- See Graduate Certificate/Diploma.
- Postgraduate qualification
Of or relating to studies beyond a Bachelor's degree. Also called 'graduate' qualification.
- These are preparatory offerings designed specifically to facilitate developing skills and understanding to tackle tertiary studies such as critical thinking, researching, writing and referencing. These can be accredited (count towards your degree) or not accredited. Some preparatory offerings are facilitated by specialist tutors whilst others are self-paced.
- Prerequisite Unit
- This is a unit or group of units that must be completed before a student can progress to the next level of study. Prerequisite units are necessary to ensure a student will be able to successfully understand and have the required skills for the next unit in a particular or related subject area. Prerequisites for units are listed in the unit description page and should be checked carefully when making unit selections.
- Print Only
- This is one of four delivery methods, in which all educational content, learning activities, assessment and support services for a unit are delivered in print. Email may also be used for interaction with staff and support services.
- Professional Education
- Continuing Professional Education courses promote lifelong learning through applied education and training programs suitable for employed professionals.
- This is the award conferred upon students who successfully complete a course of study. Qualifications include: degree (specific types of degree are Bachelors or Masters), Certificate, and Diploma.
- Quick Skills
- Quick Skills is one of the free academic skills resources for students enrolled in undergraduate or postgraduate study. It is delivered in online modules that are designed to help build skills in study techniques in areas such as time management, by logging into (My study centre>Manage your study>Active units).
- Recognition of Prior Learning
- Recognition of Prior Learning, or RPL, is the formal acknowledgement of previous learning, from informal as well as formal learning situations, for credit towards a degree or TAFE qualification.
- Recommended prerequisite
- If a unit has a recommended prerequisite, this indicates that it will assume a certain level of background knowledge or prior study. It is important to take note of recommended prerequisites and complete units in the recommended order to ensure your best chance of academic success. Recommended prerequisites are listed where applicable under the 'Prerequisites' section of the unit description page.
- Record of Results
- A record of results is a record of all learning leading to an AQF qualification or an accredited unit in which a student is enrolled and is issued by an authorised issuing organisation. In Australia this may also be known as a 'transcript of results', 'academic transcript', 'record of achievement' or 'statement of results'. OUA provides a record of all results for units undertaken through OUA studies on behalf of the relevant providers.
- The place, especially the house, in which one resides.
- Another of the available academic skills resources, SMARTHINKING offers students live online tutoring and writing support services. Students can drop in for live tutoring, submit questions for a response generally within 24 hours and schedule tutoring sessions.
- A session refers to a university term during the year during which most postgraduate classes are held. OUA offers three 14-week sessions each year. Not all postgraduate units run in sessions (some run in 4 study periods); students should check course pages carefully. Some universities refer to sessions as 'semesters', 'trimesters' or 'terms'.
- Special circumstances
This refers to circumstances which:
- Were beyond the person's control
- Did not make their full impact until on or after the census date, and
- Make it impracticable for the person to complete the requirements for the course(s) in the period during which the person undertook, or was to undertake, the course(s).
- Statement of Academic Record
- See Record of Results
- Statement of Attainment
- A statement of attainment recognises that one or more accredited units has been studied successfully. The issuance of a statement of attainment by OUA on behalf of its providers recognises that OUA students do not always complete a whole qualification. They may choose to complete only a unit a number or units.
Please note: A Statement of Attainment is not always accepted as an official statement of results, and a Record of Results may be required in some cases. A Statement of Attainment can be obtained from My study centre.
- Statement of Enrolments
A statement that displays a student's enrolment and withdrawal activity for a calendar year. This statement can be used by students who wish to prove their current or previous enrolment status or claim relevant entitlements from Centrelink. A Statement of Enrolments can be downloaded from My study centre. Compare Statement of Payments.
- Statement of Payments
A statement that displays a student's payment activity relating to all processed unit fees, penalties and purchases within a financial year. This statement can be used by students who need to claim reimbursement of fees from their employer or prove enrolment payments for taxation purposes. A Statement of Payments can be downloaded from My study centre. Compare Statement of Enrolments.
- See major.
- Student Advisor
- Student advisors are telephone support staff trained in advising students with a variety of issues from planning their higher education on-line study experience to applying for Government student support (FEE-HELP). Provider university advisors will help with academic questions specific to units of study or qualifications.
- Student Community
- Online study groups and discussion sites make online learning a lot easier. The Student Community forum is an online discussion site or message board for OUA students. Here students can participate in the discussion forum, post questions and seek advice from other students, and cultivate social bonds with other students.
- Student Counselling
Counsellors are available through this telephone service offering confidential counselling for students. This dedicated care line has been set up in conjunction with Crisis Support Services, Australia's leading professional telephone counselling provider. All counsellors are professionally qualified and experienced.
- Study Level
- See Level of Study
- Study Skills Units
- Units that provide an introduction to university-level learning or grounding in core skills needed for further study. Study skills units may be accredited or non-award.
- Study period
- This refers to an academic term or semester, as defined by OUA, in which a unit of study is offered. OUA offers four 13-week Study Periods each year. All undergraduate units and some postgraduate units are held in Study Periods. Some universities refer to Study Periods as "semesters" or "terms".
Technical Further Education (TAFE) is a nationally-recognised quality training qualification that is valued by education providers and industries in Australia. To learn more view our TAFE page.
- Post-secondary level study.
- See Academic Transcript.
- Undergraduate qualification
- This is the first degree or degrees taken at university level. An undergraduate qualification is also called a Bachelor's degree.
See Level of Study.
- A unit refers to a unit of study or subject that is held over the course of a Study Period or Session. Units are the individual components that make up a qualification or degree, but may also be studied as stand-alone subjects, i.e. not as part of a degree. Each unit usually requires 10-12 hours of study each week. Units are identified by a title e.g. Accounting Fundamentals, and a code indicating study area and level e.g., ACF110.
- Unit Profile
- A unit profile refers to the information about a unit such as its title, code, overview, topics, learning outcomes, prerequisites and special requirements. OUA unit profiles are official documents and are required if a student wishes to gain credit or recognition of prior learning for their OUA studies. You can download unit profiles from the unit pages on the OUA website. Unit profiles for units already completed can be downloaded from "Academic Results" page from within the OUA website.
- VET FEE-HELP
- VET FEE-HELP is a student loan scheme for the TAFE sector that is part of the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP). VET FEE-HELP assists eligible students undertaking certain TAFE courses of study (including most diploma, advanced diploma, graduate certificate and graduate diploma courses) with an approved TAFE provider, to pay for all or part of their tuition costs. Approved providers are registered training organisations approved by the Australian Government to offer VET FEE-HELP assistance to their students. See VET FEE-HELP for further information.
- Vocational Education and Training (VET)
VET is a type of study that provides practical, work-related skills or competencies. Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutions are public VET providers.
See also TAFE.
- Web dependent
- This is one of four delivery methods in which online participation for a unit is compulsory. Supplementary materials may be delivered in other modes such as print, DVD or CD.
- Web supplemented
- This is one of four delivery methods in which online participation for a unit is optional; although students are expected to have access to the internet for email and research purposes. Supplementary unit materials may be available from a unit website.