FAQs

General

Questions on this page


Can I study overseas?

Yes, you can! With OUA, you can study from anywhere around the world. We can even organise exam venues for students based overseas. In addition, there are no additional charges for Australian or New Zealand citizens or permanent visa holders living outside Australia.

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Can I transfer from Open Universities Australia to an on-campus place?

It's possible to transfer to an on-campus place, but it's at the discretion of the university where you wish to study. OUA students seeking to transfer will need to apply through their desired university's Tertiary Admissions Centre. In many cases, successful completion of units offered through Open Universities Australia will improve your chances of receiving an offer from your preferred university. Check with the university to see which units are most appropriate.

Some postgraduate courses have more flexible transfer arrangements. Please check your options with the provider university.

Arrangements for international students may differ. Students in this position should contact their preferred university directly.

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Do I get a student card?

All OUA students will receive a student card, which carries your name and OUA ID number. You should receive your student card in the first week of the study term you have enrolled in.

Keep in mind that, because we are an off-campus study provider, you may not be eligible for certain student concessions such as public transport. Please consult the concession provider to check your eligibility.

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Does Open Universities Australia offer short courses?

We offer free, four-week courses through Open2Study.

You can also choose to study some undergraduate units individually (and not necessarily work towards a full degree). These usually take 13 weeks to complete (in addition to an exams period for most units.)  Check each unit page for more information.

Postgraduate courses have an application process, and units within them can usually only be studied as a part of the course, unless special permission is sought from the university.

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Does my student card entitle me to concession rates on public transport?

As OUA is an off-campus study provider, most state public transport authorities will not issue you with a student travel concession card.

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From which institution do I get my degree (qualification)?

Your qualification will come directly from the university that provides your course. If you complete a Bachelor of Arts with Macquarie through OUA, you'll graduate as a Macquarie student.

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How am I better off going through OUA rather than direct?

OUA offers you the opportunity to study online with leading Australian universities, so that your study fits your life. We are the leaders in online tertiary education in Australia, and have been provding students access to online education for nearly 20 years.

You can find out about the many benefits of online study in our Why study online section.

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How do I enrol?

Unlike other university courses, most of our undergraduate units are open to all students. You can enrol straight away in the units that fit your needs then get started with your studies as soon as your study materials arrive.

For many undergraduate courses we recommend that you eventually apply and enrolling in units is a great way of becoming eligible to apply. Check the How to apply section on the course page you're interested in to see how you can become eligible  for application.

Postgraduate units

Most postgraduate units are different. They are restricted and require interested students to follow an application process for entry. Further information about application processes and forms is available on each course page.

Enrolling is easy, and can be done online or over the phone by calling one of our Student Advisors on 1300 363 652.

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How do I get a replacement student card?

If you lose your student card and need a replacement, please contact the Student Advisors on 1300 363 652.

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How do I meet other students?

There are plenty of ways to get in touch with your fellow OUA students.

You can access Discussion Groups and our live chat program by logging in to My Study Centre.

You can also keep in touch with your fellow students by following OUA on Twitter (@OpenUnisAu) or becoming a fan on Facebook.

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How do I update my personal details?

You can change most of your details, such as your contact information, by signing into My Study Centre, going to your Profile and following the link to Update your profile.

However, there are some details that are used for admission, enrolment and government reporting purposes that cannot be changed online. To change your name, citizenship or date of birth, you must make scanned copies of certain legal documents and email them to OUA.

For further details, see Changing your personal details.

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How does studying through Open Universities Australia work?

Studying through OUA may be different to your previous study experiences, and it can take time to develop the skills you need to be an independent online learner.

We offer access to a range of units and qualifications that are taught by leading Australian universities. You can complete single units for interest, or follow a course structure to work towards a specific qualification. Units are offered in several study terms throughout the year, and you can choose to study part-time or full-time, continuously or with breaks.

OUA handles enrolment, some administration and offers a network of support services. The universities send your study materials, handle all academic matters and are responsible for your assessment and graduation. If you decide to complete a course, you will graduate from the university offering that course, for example RMIT or Griffith.

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How long does it take to finish a course?

That's up to you! Because Open Universities Australia lets you choose when to study, in many cases you can take up to 10 years to complete the requirements for a course unless specified otherwise. From 2016 onwards students who commence their degree with Griffith University will have eight years to complete their studies.

The ability to study all year round also means it's possible to fast-track, finishing sooner than traditional study would allow. However, it's really important to remember that you need to spend around 12 hours each week on every undergraduate unit you study, so taking on extra units to finish ahead of time can be challenging.

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How many units can I study at a time?

You can enrol in a maximum of four units per study term.

Please note that the recommended full-time study load at OUA is two units per study term, and we recommend starting with just one unit in your first study term.

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How many units can I study at the same time?

You can choose the study load that best suits your study goals and your work and family commitments.

We consider one unit per study term as part-time study, and two or more units as full-time study.

You'll need to commit at least 12 hours of study time per week, and we recommend starting with just one unit in your first study term. Our maximum permitted study load is four units in a study term - it's a good idea to speak with a Student Advisor before taking on such a large commitment.

Please note that during Semester 3, your study load doubles because you have less time to complete your study. If you enrol in a unit during Semester 3 we consider that full-time study - you'll need to commit up to 25 hours a week of study per unit over this intensive study term.

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I haven't studied with OUA for a while. Can I keep working towards my degree?

OUA's undergraduate degrees can be completed over a period of 10 years unless specified otherwise*, so even if you haven't studied with us for a while, you can probably keep working towards your qualification. Our postgraduate degrees usually have different timeframes for completion. If you're looking to return to study at OUA, the best thing to do would be to contact a Student Advisor using our Online Enquiry Form to discuss your study options.

* From 2016 onwards students who commence their degree with Griffith University will have eight years to complete their studies.

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I'm having trouble accessing My Study Centre or my study materials. Who can help me?

The key to accessing all your important information is setting up your My Study Centre account. Registering for a My Study Centre account is free, and you can do it even if you haven't enrolled yet.

Once you're logged in to My Study Centre, you can access your online study materials by selecting My courses and units and Current units. You'll see a list of your current units, and links to the provider university's online portal. Your unit's provider should have sent you login details in the first week of study. If you no longer have those details, you will need to follow the university's instructions to get them back. Most of the university websites will contain information about retrieving lost login details, similar to those on the My study centre login page.

If you're still unsure of how to access your study information, contact a Student Advisor.

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I'm interested in studying. How do I get started?

It's easy to get started! Our enrolment process only takes a few minutes, and you can enrol online, or by calling a Student Advisor on 1300 363 652.

Or, if you know you want to study but you're not sure which is the right course for you, then take a look at OUA Pathways. OUA Pathways recommends the best units to start your studies and gets you ready (and eligible) to apply for a degree. 

Once you complete your recommended path you'll be able to choose from a range of courses in your area of interest. Plus, each of the units you complete through OUA Pathways can also be credited towards your chosen course.

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Is study through Open Universities Australia tax deductible?

Self-education costs may be tax deductible if they are likely to result in wage increases in your current employment. For more information, visit www.ato.gov.au or speak to an accountant.

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Is there anybody who can help me if I get stuck?

The OUA Student Advisors are your first point of contact when you have problems with enrolment, choosing units, withdrawing from units or other administrative issues.

Your university tutor can provide assistance with matters relating directly to your unit or assessment. Contact details for academic staff are included with your study materials.

We also offer a whole network of support services (almost all of them free) in case you need some motivation, advice, tutoring support or you're facing personal problems and need to speak with someone.

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What are advantages of online education?

Online education allows you the flexibility to fit your study around your life. Some the advantages are:

  1. Your studies are self-paced - The ability to study year-round means it's possible to fast track your course, finishing sooner than traditional study would allow.
  2. You can choose your study load - OUA allows you to stay flexible with your study load, so you can choose - and change - the number of units you take each study term to best suit you.
  3. You can study anytime - Study day or night, you are not restricted by lecture or tutorial times.
  4. You can study anywhere - Study at home, anywhere in Australia or around the world.
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What is OUA Pathways?

OUA Pathways is a program we developed especially for students who know they want to study online but aren't sure where to start.

Each pathway includes four units based on your area of interest, plus the option to study preparatory units for free. Once you complete your recommended path you'll be able to choose from a range of courses in your area of interest. Plus, each of the units you complete through OUA Pathways can also be credited towards your chosen course.

OUA Pathways units are open for enrolment year-round, so you can get started when it suits you.

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What is a Unit Profile? How do I get one?

A Unit Profile provides important information about a unit, such as its title, code, learning outcomes, prerequisites and special requirements. It also includes an overview of the unit and the topics covered.

OUA Unit Profiles are official documents and can assist students in understanding their eligibility regarding credit and recognition of prior learning. You can obtain Unit profiles can be obtained from the 'Relevant courses' section of each unit page on this website.

If you need a unit profile for one of your completed units, log in to My Study Centre, follow the link to Completed units and click on the link for the relevant unit

Unit Profiles are not available online for units studied before 2007. If you need an earlier unit profile, please Contact us.

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What is online education?

Simply put, to study online you don't need to attend a classroom session. Instead, the university provides you with the study materials and guidance you need to work through your course, and you can interact with students and tutors in online discussion forums.

While you will still have set dates for your assignments and exams, you can structure your study time to fit your commitments.

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What postgraduate courses are on offer?

Take a look at the postgraduate degrees available to you through OUA.

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What undergraduate degrees are on offer?

Take a look at the undergraduate degrees available to you through OUA.

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Which units should I start with?

OUA Pathways recommends the best units to start your studies, even if you're not sure which course you want to do. Each pathway includes four units based on your area of interest, plus the option to study preparatory units for free.

Once you complete your recommended units you'll be able to choose from a range of courses in your area of interest. Plus, each of the units you complete through OUA Pathways can also be credited towards your chosen course.

OUA Pathways units are open for enrolment year-round, so you can get started when it suits you.

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Why don't student cards include photos?

Because our students are located all over Australia (and internationally) and a photo verification system would prolong the production process and mean students would have to wait longer for their cards.

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Why don't student cards mention full-time or part-time study?

We blame our flexible enrolment approach, which allows students to choose how much study they want to do in each study term. We can't state whether a student is part-time or full-time on the card as this may change throughout the year.

Your confirmation letter can be used to show your full-time or part-time status, as it lists the Equivalent Full Time Study Load (EFTSL) for each unit you are enrolled in.

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Will all of my classes be online?

Most units offered through OUA require internet access and include online content or email communication.

Some courses include compulsory on-campus attendance (for instance, when you needed to demonstrate practical skills). This will be clearly stated on both the course page and in the unit outlines.

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