Glossary of University terms
This glossary is managed by the SAS policy team. Please send feedback or requests for new entries or amendments to SASPolicyTeam@unisa.edu.au.
You may also find the 'Definitions' section in most UniSA policies useful.
The principal academic advisory body to University Council. The primary role and functions of Academic Board are set out in the Academic Board Charter (pdf).
A member of University staff who contributes to the development of programs.
The components of dress all graduates are required to wear at a graduation ceremony. Detailed information regarding the academic dress of the University of South Australia can be found here
Academic integrity is the commitment to act with honesty, trustworthiness, fairness, respect and responsibility in all academic work. Academic integrity is the foundation of university life and is fundamental to the reputation of UniSA and its staff and students.
- submitting substantially the same work for multiple assessments. This includes work submitted for a UniSA course or any other course at another educational provider. If a course coordinator specifically allows this practice, it will be clearly identified in the course outline
- breaches of the examination procedures as set out in Section 6 of this APPM
- presentation of data with respect to laboratory work, clinical placements, practicums, field trips or other work, that has been copied, falsified or in any other way obtained improperly
- inclusion of material in individual work that has involved significant assistance from another person, where such assistance is not expressly permitted in the course outline
- seeking or providing assistance to a student in the presentation of individual work, where such assistance is not expressly permitted in the course outline
- falsification or misrepresentation of academic records, or any other document submitted in relation to an academic program, and
- any other actions that contravene the principles of academic integrity
For more information see Section 9 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
An area of specialisation within an academic program (e.g. Applied Geology within the Bachelor of Applied Science) and generally takes the form of a specified sequence of courses to be undertaken within that program. See Specialisation.
Formally authorised statements of the principles and actions required to support teaching and learning activities at UniSA.
At the end of each academic review period, the academic progress of each student is assessed using specific criteria to identify students who are making unsatisfactory progress. This is called 'academic review'.
Students are identified as 'making unsatisfactory progress' if they:
- fail a course for the second time; or
- fail courses in an academic review period, resulting in a grade point average for that period of less than 2.80; or
- fail a practicum, field, or clinical placement, where that failure constitutes failure in the course
For more information see Section 10 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
The group of study periods from which results are collated to identify students who are making unsatisfactory progress.
A student's academic progress in a program and the outcomes of the formal review of progress undertaken as part of the University's academic review process.
A form of program delivery that allows students to undertake and complete a program in a shorter period of time than the standard schedule allows for.
A professional association that formally accredits programs within a particular discipline. In some cases it may be a statutory body that has been established for this purpose and has responsibility for administering the legislation controlling the registration and practice of the profession.
Additional points that may be used in combination with an applicant’s Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR) to derive a person’s Selection Rank. Adjustments do not change an applicant’s ATAR, but change their Selection Rank for a particular program or programs.
Any option available to prospective higher education students that will enable them to meet the entry requirements of their chosen program.
Recognises that a student may have completed previous qualifications that can reduce the duration of a Masters program.
Includes established advisory groups and occasional advisory meetings with stakeholders about particular issues.
Advisory structures provide:
- independent expert external advice to individuals and groups responsible for decisions about educational and research programs
- advice about relevant trends in the demand for graduates and the graduate qualities required by employers and the community
- comment on the structure and content of existing programs under review, and on proposed new programs (in accordance with the Coursework Program Approval Manual), and
- advice on research trends and strategic opportunities for research
For more information see policy A-38: Advisory structures.
See Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement
A formally approved change to a program, course, major, sub-major or minor.
Used to help prospective students, family and others find the admission information most relevant to their circumstances. The groupings do not determine how an applicant will be assessed but direct an information seeker to the most useful information. For more information see A-18 Selection and entry to programs.
An overseas institution with which UniSA has a formal student mobility agreement.
At UniSA, all courses are allocated an 'area code' and a 'catalogue number' for administrative purposes. For example, the course Chemistry 101 might be allocated 'CHEM 1007'. The alpha component 'CHEM' represents the discipline area and is the area code for this course. The numerical component '1007' is the catalogue number for this course.
Is a specific design within education and training programs to facilitate and maximise opportunities for students to proceed from one level of education/training to the next.
An arrangement where a program has been specifically designed to facilitate and maximise opportunities for credit transfer and/or for students to proceed from one level of education to the next (for example a specifically designed pathway from an offshore diploma level program to a UniSA degree program).
A measurement of a student's skill and knowledge. For more information see Section 1 and Definitions section in the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Each study period consists of a teaching period and an assessment period. The assessment period occurs after the teaching period is complete. Final summative assessment, including examinations, occurs during the assessment period.
A sub-degree award conferred following the satisfactory completion of an academic program normally of at least two years full-time duration.
Knowledge that students are assumed to have in a particular subject area prior to enrolling into a program. Assumed knowledge is an advantage but not essential for entry into a program.
Is the Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank. It provides a national comparative ranking that indicates how a student has performed in Year 12 relative to their age cohort in the year they graduated. The ATAR is derived from the scaled scores achieved for senior secondary school subjects. The specific calculation is different for each state and territory but the result is designed to be nationally equivalent.
ATAR related thresholds/profile
Terms used where ATAR is the basis for assessing eligibility for admission, either alone or in combination with other factors. For UniSA these are:
- guaranteed entry selection rank
- lowest ATAR to which an offer was made
- lowest Selection Rank
A type of single course enrolment in which attendance in a course is for information only. Audit students may attend lectures, but attendance at tutorials and practical sessions will be subject to the permission of the course coordinator. Completion of the course does not count towards a program. For more information see policy A-48: Enrolment.
Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement
The Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement (AHEGS) contains details and features of a graduate’s conferred award as well as details of any prizes, scholarships and grants a graduate may have been awarded. Where professional recognition is part of a conferred award, it will be included. The AHEGS aims to provide greater transparency about the level and context of an award, and the status of a Graduate's achievements.
The qualification conferred upon a student following the successful completion of an academic program. The categories of award include: Associate Degree, Diploma, Bachelor Degree, Honours Degree, Degree with Honours, Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma, Master Degree (both coursework and research), Doctoral Degree (both coursework and research) and Higher Doctorate.
An undergraduate award of three or more years of full-time or equivalent part-time study.
Must be at least 4 academic years (144 units) of full-time study (or equivalent). For example:
- combining two 3-year awards would create a 4-year (144 units) double degree
- combining a 4-year and a 3-year award would create a 5-year (180 units) double degree
For more information see the Coursework Program Approval Manual.
Ranges of student contribution amounts based on the classification of an individual course of study.
Bilingual print dictionary
A dictionary that translates words or phrases from one language to another, without providing a definition of the word in either language.
Credit granted as recognition of successfully completed periods of equivalent study. Block credit is expressed in units. Such credit is particularly applicable to programs that are highly structured and have few or no electives, as with many professional disciplines where programs are fairly uniform across Australia. For more information see policy A-13: Recognition of prior learning.
The physical location from where a program of study is being delivered. The University has six campuses. These are: City West, City East, Mawson Lakes, Magill, Whyalla and Mount Gambier.
The period of time a higher degree by research student is enrolled and undertaking their research project, including examination (see also research period).
An opportunity within a program for students to gain valuable on-the-job skills and experience in preparation for the workplace.
An applied form of study involving an intensive, detailed description and analysis of a single project or program in the context of its environment. Case studies are common in the Business and Management disciplines.
At UniSA courses are allocated an 'area code' and a 'catalog number' for administrative purposes. For example the course Chemistry 101 might be allocated 'CHEM 1007'. The alpha component 'CHEM' represents the discipline area and is the area code for this course. The numerical component '1007' is the catalog number for this course.
Is the date within each study period (or research period for higher degree by research) by which a student's enrolment must be finalised for a course, and applicable fees and charges are incurred. It is the last day that a student can withdraw from a course and have it deleted from their academic record.
It is also the deadline for various financial requirements, including: submission of your request for Commonwealth support and HECS-HELP form; submission of your request for FEE-HELP Assistance; payment of any up-front payment of your student contribution; obtaining a HECS-HELP loan; or supplying your TFN.
Certificate IV (sometimes known as an ‘advanced certificate’)
This is a type of qualification recognised under the Australian Qualifications Framework. It is one of the minimum requirements for entry to University programs. For more information see policy A-18: Selection and entry to programs.
Chancellor's Letters of Commendation
Awarded annually to students with outstanding academic performance in an undergraduate program. Receipt of a Chancellor's Letter of Commendation will be recorded on the student's academic transcript. For more information see policy A-50: Coursework scholarships and prizes.
CHESSN (Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support Number)
A unique identifier that helps higher education providers and the Australian government provide you with information about any Commonwealth assistance (scholarships or HELP loans) you may have used. A student’s CHESSN is printed on their Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN).
Provides students with direct education and valuable exposure to professional practice in both metropolitan and rural settings. They are a core element of many of the programs offered by the Division of Health Sciences.
An examination where no written or printed materials or other aids are allowed into the examination location. No electronic devices are allowed.
A collaborative arrangement between recognised education providers, resulting in a single award and may include the co-badging of a single parchment. The inclusion of another university's details on University of South Australia parchments must be approved by Academic Board and University Council.
A group of students that commences a particular program of study in a particular year.
Where students undertake two undergraduate degrees simultaneously. Where programs share courses, the time taken will typically be less than two single degrees. Students graduate with a parchment from each degree.
A student who has enrolled in a program for the first time between 1 January and 31 December of a given year.
Common core course
Courses that are common to multiple academic programs or specialisations within a school or division. See Core course.
Commonwealth Assistance Form (CAF)
Students who are enrolled in a Commonwealth supported place (CSP), or who are requesting assistance under the Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP), must complete a Commonwealth Assistance Form (CAF). For more information please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN)
A notice containing important information about a student's enrolment, any HELP debt they have incurred or student contribution amounts a student has paid.
Commonwealth Assisted Student
Students who receive a Commonwealth HELP loan. Eligible students include Australian citizens, certain New Zealand citizens, or holders of permanent humanitarian visas. Holders of non-humanitarian permanent visas are not eligible for Commonwealth assistance but may be eligible as domestic students for a Commonwealth supported place.
Australian government’s contributions towards the cost of a student's higher education paid directly to the University.
Commonwealth Grants Scheme (CGS)
A scheme whereby the Commonwealth provides funding to higher education providers for Commonwealth supported places (CSPs) in bachelor programs and some sub-bachelor, non-research postgraduate, medicine and other courses of study specified by the Minister.
A Commonwealth program that aims to facilitate choice in higher education and to increase participation by students from low socio-economic backgrounds, particularly indigenous students and students from rural and regional areas. For more information see Scholarships at UniSA.
Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP)
A higher education place for which the Commonwealth makes a financial contribution under the Act (HESA 2003). Domestic undergraduate places at UniSA are generally Commonwealth supported. Postgraduate coursework places can be offered on a full fee-paying basis or as Commonwealth supported places.
An Australian citizen will not be eligible for a CSP or the HELP schemes where UniSA reasonably expects that the student will not undertake any courses forming part of their program of study in Australia.
A student who is eligible for, and is enrolled into, a Commonwealth supported place. Commonwealth supported students pay a student contribution amount towards the cost of their program, and a student services and amenities fee.
To be eligible for a Commonwealth supported place, a student must be a domestic student and undertake part of their program of study in Australia. A domestic student who holds an Australian permanent visa or is a New Zealand citizens must reside in Australia for the duration of their studies to be eligible for enrolment as a Commonwealth supported student.
Non-academic activities that impose some restriction on a student's capacity to participate in, or complete an assessment requirement (e.g. elite athletes, jury duty and Defence forces leave). For more information see Section 3 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
A learning opportunity that takes place in a computer pool. There is usually a brief presentation by the lecturer or tutor followed by students completing set exercises. Computer practicals provide opportunities for interaction and discussion with the lecturer or tutor and fellow students.
Conceded Pass (CP)
A final grade that allows a course to be included in the student's progression through their program and to be used as a prerequisite. The University ceased the awarding of conceded passes in 2017.
Conferral is the date on which an academic qualification is granted. This date appears on the student's official parchment.
Conferred 'in absentia'
Where an award is conferred on a graduand at a graduation ceremony that they do not attend.
Confirmation of Candidature
The approval process for all research degree students when moving from provisional to confirmed candidature and proceeding with their research project. It involves the approval of the student’s research proposal and statement of agreement. For more information see 5.0 Research Proposal and Confirmation of Candidature in the Academic Regulations for Higher Degrees by Research.
Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE)
A form issued by the University to international students studying in Australia on a student visa, for student visa purposes.
The number of hours per week a student is required to attend face to face learning (e.g. in tutorials, lectures, workshops and practical sessions).
All students who are not a commencing student.
Continuous assessment tasks
These occur within scheduled class time and do not require any additional preparation time beyond normal class participation. A course may contain multiple continuous assessment tasks during the study period. Collectively these are known as 'a set of continuous assessment tasks'. For more information see Section 1 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
A compulsory course within an academic program or specialisation designed to provide essential skills, knowledge and understanding in the field of study.
A course that must be undertaken before or at the same time as another course. Corequisites are listed on the course home page.
At UniSA, a course is the basic component of an academic program. A course is identified by a course name (e.g. Chemistry 101), and an ‘area and catalogue number’ (e.g. CHEM 1007). A course is sometimes referred to as a subject.
An academic staff member who is responsible for the academic management of a course.
A unique six digit code assigned to each course and used to identify the course on the University’s record system.
The ways in which the University makes a course available to students. A course offering will involve a combination of the following attributes:
- mode of delivery
- partner (where applicable)
NB: A separate course outline is required for each course offering.
Contains all the teaching, learning and administrative information required by students undertaking a course. A course outline is required for all courses. It is prepared and provided to students. Section 2 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual specifies the required content of a Course outline.
Courses are owned by schools within the University. A course may be owned by more than one school, however there must always be a primary owner. Course ownership means responsibility for the academic management of the course.
The learning and teaching website for a specific course. Students enrolled in a specific course can access all course learning activities, resources and administrative information from the course site.
An award selected on merit, including but not limited to academic merit, to assist a student to undertake or complete a program of study at the University over a nominated period of time, in accordance with the selection criteria. A scholarship may take the form of periodic payments to the student or a reduction in specified costs, such as tuition fees, for the duration of the scholarship. For more information see policy A-50: Coursework prizes and scholarships.
The term 'credit' is used in two ways at the University:
- a grade awarded for an assessment task (e.g. C = Credit); or
- the recognition of prior learning granted towards the requirements of an award program at the University on the basis of prior study or prior work and/or life experience
A data base that lists existing precedent for credit arrangements and formal credit transfer agreements between UniSA and other providers.
A process that provides students with agreed and consistent credit outcomes for components of a qualification based on identified equivalence in content and learning outcomes between matched qualifications.
A code that is allocated to all programs available to international students and is:
- approved by the relevant State or Territory accreditation authority, and
- listed on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS)
Cross institutional enrolment
This is where the student is enrolled in an academic program at one educational institution (the home institution) and is permitted by that institution to enrol into courses at another, recognised, educational institution (the host institution) that will be counted towards an award at the home institution.
- Incoming cross-institutional enrolment means enrolment by a student in one or more UniSA courses that will be credited to their program at another registered provider (the 'home provider'), as agreed to by UniSA and the home provider.
- Outgoing cross-institutional enrolment means enrolment by a UniSA student in one or more courses at another registered provider (the 'host provider') that will be credited to their program at UniSA, as agreed to by UniSA and the host provider. For more information see policy A-48: Enrolment.
A form of secondary assessment granted to students who have been unable to complete the final assessment/examination, to assist them to achieve a final grade in a course. For more information see Section 7 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Degree with honours
Programs of four or more years in duration that include a minimum of one year of advanced studies for students who demonstrate a high level of achievement in the initial years of the program. Students who fail to meet the necessary grade point average for the honours stream continue with the pass degree. For more information see policy A-42: Honours degree programs.
A sub-degree award that is conferred following the satisfactory completion of an academic program of at least one or two year's full-time duration.
Application made directly to UniSA rather than through a tertiary admissions centre (e.g. SATAC)
A course in which a student works under the direction of an academic staff member in a subject area that is relevant to their program and in which they have a particular interest.
The definition of ‘disability’ in the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cwth) includes:
The definition of "disability" in the DDA includes:
- Neurological, and
- Learning disabilities, as well as
- Physical disfigurement, and
- The presence in the body of disease-causing organisms.
This broad definition is meant to ensure that everyone with a disability is protected.
The DDA covers a disability which people:
- Have now,
- Had in the past (for example: a past episode of mental illness),
- May have in the future (eg: a family history of a disability which a person may also develop),
- Are believed to have (for example: if people think someone has AIDS).
The DDA also covers people with a disability who may be discriminated against because:
- They are accompanied by an assistant, interpreter or reader,
- They are accompanied by a trained animal, such as a guide or hearing dog, or
- They use equipment or an aid, such as a wheelchair or a hearing aid.
For more information about University policy and procedures relating to disability, see policy C-7: Students with disabilities
The sequencing of courses within a program to reflect increasing complexity in content, demands in the assessment and, in some cases, prerequisite requirements. This is required for compliance with the Australian Qualifications Framework. In many programs of the University a discipline sequence constitutes a major within the program.
Study undertaken externally. Some external courses include an internal component.
A major organisational unit with responsibility for academic programs. Divisions may also have a number of sub-units called Schools. At UniSA, there are four divisions: Division of Education, Arts and Social Sciences; Division of Health Sciences; Division of Information Technology, Engineering and the Environment; the UniSA Business School.
Doctoral degree (PhD)
An award conferred following the satisfactory completion of an original research project that is comprehensive in both theory and practice, and results in a significant contribution to knowledge or understanding and/or the application of knowledge within the field of study. The award leads to the award of Doctor of Philosophy or Professional Doctorate by Research.
Australian citizens, New Zealand citizens or holders of an Australian permanent visa. Holders of an Australian permanent visa and New Zealand Citizens must reside in Australia for the duration of their studies in order to be eligible for enrolment as a Commonwealth supported student.
A program where two contrasting and complementary programs at the same level have been combined to complement each other, such that the core elements of the two awards are undertaken simultaneously and the requirements of each award are fully met.
Double degree programs are permitted at bachelor and masters degree level only. At masters level, double degrees would normally only apply to 54 unit and 72 unit programs. Double degree structures do not apply to graduate certificate or graduate diploma programs due to the structure and duration of such programs. See Bachelor double degree programs and Masters level double degrees.
Dual award PhD
Is an arrangement whereby a PhD student is jointly supervised by UniSA and another institution, enrolled at both institutions, and receives two parchments acknowledging one award. See also PhD Collaboration. For more information about University policy and procedures relating to dual award and collaborative PhDs, see policy RES-19.3 PhD Program Collaboration
Dual language program
An offshore program that uses English and a language other than English (LOTE) as the language of instruction and a medium to acquire disciplinary knowledge and skills in the development of the graduate qualities. This model requires a degree of proficiency in English and recognises the first language background of the learner.
Where an offer of enrolment is made to a recent secondary school student prior to release of ATARs or equivalent. Such offers are generally conditional on other requirements being met, such as completion of a Senior Secondary Certificate of Education or achievement of a specific minimum ATAR. Note: UniSA does not make early offers.
Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Framework
A legislative framework that includes the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Act 2000 (Cwth), regulations and related legislation, and the National Code 2018.
All undergraduate programs are required to have at least one 4.5 unit that is to be freely chosen by the student. Courses may be chosen from the list available on the University website, provided that any course prerequisite(s) are met.
Employer reserved place
A place in a program that is made available under an arrangement between the University and an employer or industry body. The arrangement limits or restricts enrolments, in some or all of the places in the program, to students sponsored by their employer or industry body.
A course or set of courses designed to provide students with the skills needed for success in further study, to assist in the transition to tertiary education. Successful completion helps prepare a person to be admitted to a course that leads to a higher education award. An enabling program is not a higher education award.
English language print dictionary
A dictionary that contains words in the English language and provides information about meaning, pronunciation, origin and inflected forms. It does not include a thesaurus.
A student who has approved leave or load recorded on the student record system against a program, or on a single course basis, at the census date for at least one study period in an academic year.
The process by which persons who have been admitted to a University program formally register to undertake one or more courses within their program as either commencing or continuing students.
Enrolment Confirmation Notice (ECN)
After the census date for each study period that students are enrolled in, all non-Commonwealth supported students will receive an ECN. The ECN will be available online through the myUniSA student portal. The ECN will show details of the student's enrolment at the census date including:
- courses in which they are enrolled
- tuition fees
Students must notify the University of any errors on the ECN within 14 days of the issue date on the notice. Any errors will need to be reported to Campus Central using the Application for Post Census Correction of Enrolment Errors form (under Enrolment and Add/Drop classes).
The rules that specify the level of attainment required to qualify for consideration for admission to university. Entry requirements can be standard or non-standard. They include admission criteria and essential requirements for admission, such as pre-requisites, assumed knowledge and program specific requirements such as auditions, education statements or police checks.
Equivalent Full-Time Student Load (EFTSL)
Is the Australian Government’s measure of a student's enrolment load. One 'EFTSL' is equal to full-time study for one student for one year. At UniSA one EFTSL is 36 units, usually made up of 8 x 4.5 unit courses.
Evaluation and Re-accreditation Review (ERR)
All programs in the penultimate year of their accreditation period undertake a comprehensive evaluation in preparation for re-accreditation. This will result in an Evaluation and Re-accreditation Review Report. For more information see policy A-35A: Quality assurance and improvement: Programs, courses and teaching arrangements.
A form of summative assessment where a student is required to undertake a specified academic task within a specified period of time, normally between one and three hours. The location of the examination and access to external assistance is regulated.
An international agreement that has been formalised between the University of South Australia and an overseas university or partner institution. For more information see policy A-36: Student Mobility.
A full study period exchange that is extended to domestic and international students to provide an opportunity for study at an overseas institution with an international exchange agreement. For more information see policy A-36: Student Mobility.
A domestic or international student who participates in a Student Exchange Program that has been formally agreed between the University of South Australia and an overseas university or education provider. For more information see policy A-36: Student Mobility.
Release from specified parts of a course. It may be exemption from lectures, practicals, tutorials, projects or any other components of a course including elements of assessment. The exact requirements will be determined by the course coordinator.
Expected completion date
The date by which a student intends to finish their award. Students can amend this date in UniSA’s online enrolment system.
Experience based entry schemes
A selection method used by higher education providers to assess and select students who may not have educational qualifications sufficient for an offer of admission to a course but who have relevant work and life experience that make them a suitable candidate for admission.
See Mode of Delivery.
Students studying off-campus. External students are not required to attend lectures or tutorials for a course on campus, with the majority of study being online. External students include:
- students who choose to study either their whole or part of their degree externally
- students enrolled in a UniSA Online program where 100% of the program in undertaken online
Administrative services for external students are located at Campus Central.
An Australian Government loan program to assist eligible fee-paying students pay all or part of their tuition fees. For more information see policy A-47: Student fees and loans.
Fee Paying Overseas Student (FPOS)
An overseas student for whom a fee is paid to the University. The fee is designed to recover the full cost of teaching and related services, administration and facilities. FPOS includes overseas students who are sponsored under Australia's foreign aid programs.
Fee paying place
A place that is occupied by a fee paying student. It is also known as a non-Commonwealth supported place.
Fee paying postgraduate students (FPPS)
Domestic postgraduate coursework students who pay program tuition fees. Fees are subject to change on an annual basis. For more information see policy A-47: Student fees and loans.
Field of Education (FOE)
A classification of programs, specialisations and courses of study with the same or similar vocational emphasis or principal subject matter.
Field of Research (FoR)
A classification that allows research and development activity (in particular, research methodology) to be categorised according to the field of research. FoR categories include major fields of research investigated by national research institutions and organisations, and emerging areas of study. For a list of FoR classifications visit the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
Fieldwork is completed with an organisation or in an environment outside the University. The focus is on linking what is learnt in class with what is seen, collected and tested in the field. The specific aims of fieldwork may vary, but they usually include one or more of the following:
- observing principles learnt in class as they appear in the field
- applying what has been learnt in class to real situations
- collecting information such as samples that can be used in class
Fieldwork assignments are generally associated with Natural and Built Environmental Sciences and related disciplines.
Flexible Learning Environment
A means of encouraging student engagement in learning activities. Creating a Flexible Learning Environment may include:
- re-configured teaching spaces
- ability to negotiate learning outcomes
- choice of courses
- delivery mechanisms and timing of delivery
- online and off-campus delivery
Material recorded on a film or video camera, either on film, tape or digitally.
Formative assessment helps students and staff to identify strengths, weaknesses and ways to improve and enhance learning. Formative assessment provides students with feedback about the quality of their work and ways to improve. Formative assessment does not contribute to the final grade.
A one year preparatory program offered by UniSA to help students gain the fundamental knowledge they need to enter an undergraduate program.
The standard annual full-time load is 36 units or 1.0 EFTSL (Equivalent Full-Time Student Load). A student undertaking at least 75% of a full-time load for the academic year will be full-time for that year. A student who is undertaking at least 75% of a full-time load, for either the first half or second half of the year, will be full-time for that half year.
A full-time student is undertaking at least 75% of a full-time load in an academic program. If a student is undertaking at least 75% of a full-time load for either the first half or second half of the year, they will be full-time for that half year. The normal annual full-time load is 36 units.
A classification used to determine the amount of funding a University receives from the Australian Government for Commonwealth supported courses of study. Each cluster is funded at a different rate.
A qualitative descriptor used to signify a range of percentage marks, or the status of a result where percentage marks are not applicable. Grades indicate the level of performance in a course against specified criteria and standards. Grades are awarded in all courses. The grading system for courses at UniSA can be found in Section 8 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Grade Point Average (GPA)
Is the outcome of a calculation to determine a student's academic performance averaged over a specified period of time. The calculation is based on the final grade achieved in each course, the grade point value associated with each final grade, and the unit value of each course. For more information see Section 8 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
A student who has qualified for an award but who has not yet had the award conferred.
A student who has had an award conferred. This includes an honorary award and an award conferred jointly with another university or another body under Section 6 of The University of South Australia Act 1990.
A postgraduate award of at least six month's duration full-time or its equivalent part-time, following the successful completion of an academic program.
A postgraduate award of at least one year duration full-time or equivalent part-time, following the successful completion of an academic program.
Graduate Entry Bachelor Degree
A bachelor program where admission is restricted to graduates. These programs normally involve a minimum of one and a half years of full-time study or equivalent part-time study, following the satisfactory completion of a degree. They provide a professional level qualification for graduates.
The University recognises that its graduates require particular qualities to enable them to participate in employment and the community. Seven graduate qualities identify a graduate of the University of South Australia. These qualities are developed through teaching and learning in courses and programs. For more information see Graduate Qualities.
An award selected on merit, including but not limited to academic merit, to assist a student to undertake a designated component of a program, such as a student placement or international exchange, or to assist with the initial costs of commencing university study. A grant is a one-off occurrence and may take the form of a payment made directly to the student or a reduction in a specified cost such as tuition fees. For more information see policy A-50: Coursework Scholarships and Prizes.
Hawke Ambassador Program
Typically 18 units (usually one study period) that may be counted towards nominated Bachelor degree programs. Students are based within an international non-government organisation (NGO), usually in an overseas location and work as volunteers rather than undertaking formal study at an overseas university.
An Australian Government loan program to assist eligible students pay their student contribution amount for their enrolled course of study. For more information see policy A-47: Student fees and loans.
The award of Doctor of Letters or Doctor of Science. It is based on substantiated publications and/or the achievements of the candidate being recognised as a distinguished contribution to a field, resulting in an authoritative international standing.
An Australian Government loan program to help eligible students pay their student contributions (HECS-HELP), tuition fees (FEE-HELP), overseas study expenses (OS-HELP) and, their student services and amenities fee (SA-HELP). These loans are repaid through the tax system.
Higher Education Provider (HEP)
A public or private higher education institution approved under the Higher Education Support Act 2003 (Cwth).
Higher Education Support Act (HESA) 2003
The legislation that outlines the administrative requirements behind the Commonwealth Supported places and the Higher Education Loan Program. These administrative requirements are also set out in various guidelines that sit under HESA.
The provider where a student is enrolled, and from which they will graduate
The award of Doctor of the University is made in recognition of:
- distinction by the recipient in public service or service to the University, or
- a distinguished contribution by the recipient to a field of academic endeavour
A separate, stand-alone one-year program of advanced studies in research and professional practice, for students who demonstrate a high level of achievement on completion of their pass degree program (see policy A-42: Honours Programs).
The overseas provider where a student participates in a student mobility program. The host provider may be, but is not limited to:
• an educational institution
• a placement provider
• a non-government organisation
• an industry internship partner
Impact and compliance statement
A mechanism for assessing how a program proposal under consideration might impact on other elements of the University environment such as other programs.
An international student participating in a student mobility program at UniSA.
Apart from student contribution amounts for Commonwealth supported students and tuition fees for non-supported students UniSA may impose fees for:
- the provision of student services and student amenities;
- residential accommodation;
- food, transport and accommodation for field trips that the student can purchase from alternative providers;
- special admissions test (for judging suitability of a person seeking admission into a specialist course);
- non-award courses, or audit-only attendance at courses;
- non-essential goods or services;
- alternative forms of access to essential goods and services that are provided in other forms free of charge;
- items that become the property of the student, that are not consumed during the course of study, and that may be purchased from alternative providers; and
- fines or penalties, such as overdue debts or library fees provided the fees are imposed primarily as a disincentive, and are not levied to raise revenue or cover administrative costs.
A work placement that is completed with an organisation outside the University. The focus is on applying what has been learnt at university in an industrial setting. Industrial placements are usually associated with Engineering and related disciplines.
A professional body representing a discipline that is not formally recognised as a profession. Professional practice standards and codes of conduct may be endorsed and promoted, but the association has no statutory authority.
A form of course delivery that allows students to undertake and complete a course in a shorter period of time than the standard schedule allows for.
A term used by the University to indicate that a program has undergone an internal review and has approval to continue.
Internal program transfer
Enables a student admitted to, and enrolled in, a program of the University to apply for and be admitted to another program of the University at the same level or at a lower level, without needing to apply through the standard entry process, direct entry or the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC).
The International baccalaureate (IB) diploma program is a senior secondary education curriculum and assessment framework offered by some schools as an alternative to the Australian National Curriculum and overseen by state and territory curriculum and assessment authorities. Australian tertiary admission centres convert IB scores to a notional ATAR, enabling IB students to be ranked for tertiary entrance alongside their peers.
A student who is studying in Australia on a temporary visa, or a non-Australian citizen who is studying overseas via online or distance education. Students enrolled in a program delivered by an offshore partner are not considered international students.
Action taken by UniSA to assist a student who is making unsatisfactory progress in their program.
A staff member, or authorised nominee, who is responsible for supervising examinations.
A collaborative arrangement between recognised education providers, resulting in a single award. Such awards may include the co-badging of a single parchment. The inclusion of another university's details on University of South Australia parchments must be approved by Academic Board and University Council.
Each course taught at UniSA has three dates attached to it, as described below. Key dates that fall on a public holiday or weekend will remain in effect and will not be altered to a different date. Online transactions completed on those days (withdrawals and/or payments) will take effect from the actual date on which they were made. All key dates are published by UniSA on its website. The key dates are Census date, Withdraw date and Withdraw-fail date.
The UniSA web-based learning and teaching environment.
Leave of absence
Leave of absence is a period of time during which a student is permitted to suspend their enrolment in an academic program. For more information see policyA-48: Enrolment.
A formal presentation by an academic staff member, usually to a large number of students. Lectures may include the use of handouts and audio-visual presentations. Opportunities for asking questions or discussing the material being presented are usually limited.
A stream of courses comprising 36 units (usually eight courses) that are related to each other in content and are usually studied in sequence (in some programs they may be called professional majors).
A quantitative value, often expressed as a percentage, awarded for an assessment task. For more information see Section 8 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Masters degree (by coursework)
An advanced program of study and research, designed to provide expert knowledge of a relevant field of study. The coursework component is expected to lead to the acquisition or enhancement of specific professional or vocational skills and knowledge. The research component is expected to provide an in-depth understanding of a particular field of academic or professional specialisation. For more information see policy A-49: Postgraduate Coursework Degrees with a significant research component.
Masters degree (by research)
A research postgraduate program of two years full-time duration (or part-time equivalent) leading to the award of Master of (Discipline).
The length of the contributing masters degrees will determine the length of a masters double degree program. The credit transfer policy of the University requires the completion of at least two thirds of the total units of a program while enrolled at UniSA to qualify for a UniSA masters degree. Masters double degrees will therefore be of varying length from 72 units to 96 units. For example:
- combining two 54 unit awards would create a 72 unit double degree
- combining a 54 unit award and a 72 unit award would create an 84 unit double degree
- combining two 72 unit awards would create a 96 unit double degree
For more information see the Coursework Program Approval Manual.
A signed statement from a registered medical practitioner, health practitioner or approved health specialist certifying a period of time during which a student is/has been affected by a medical condition impacting on their academic participation and/or attendance. Medical certificates are legal documents. For more information see the Definitions section in the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
A stream of courses within a program that is related in content and comprising up to 18 units (usually four courses). A minor is generally a subset of courses within a major and is not included on a student's parchment.
The manner in which a student is undertaking a program. There are two modes of delivery:
- Internal mode includes face to face components such as lectures, tutorials, practicals, workshops or seminars that may be offered at a University campus, or delivered at another location. Courses delivered in internal mode may be offered as intensives allowing them to be completed in a shorter period of time.
- External mode includes online, distance education, industry placement or directed research. Virtual classrooms are deemed to be an external mode of delivery. External model does not normally include a face to face component, however some courses offered in external mode may require a small component of on-campus activity.
An offshore provider teaches their program with quality assurance from UniSA. Credit transfer is normally available on completion of the offshore program.
A process for ensuring that consistency of marking occurs within courses and across the program, such that the same level of achievement is similarly rewarded. Moderation should demonstrate that markers make the same judgement at different points in time in relation to the same level of performance.
Monolingual LOTE programs
An offshore program where the medium of instruction and assessment is in a language other than English (for example Mandarin).
An agreement between two or more countries or jurisdictions whereby a graduate qualification is reciprocally recognised by the relevant accrediting body(s) in each country or jurisdiction that is party to the agreement.
For example, Australia might recognise the qualification of graduates of a particular program completed in Malaysia, and Malaysia reciprocally recognises graduates of the equivalent program in Australia.
Mutual recognition may be automatically established through:
- the program being accredited by a domestic accrediting body that has a reciprocal agreement already in place with an accrediting body(s) in another country or jurisdiction(s), or
- the program being accredited by an international accrediting body that has jurisdiction over several countries
The online system used by onshore students to enrol in coursework courses.
A suite of postgraduate programs, normally graduate certificate, graduate diploma and masters (but may extend to professional doctorate) where each lower award is a complete sub-set of the next award. Depending on the entry requirements, students may enter or exit the suite of awards at any level. For example, a student may progress upwards from the Graduate certificate, or may enter at the Masters level but exit with either a Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma. An award for a higher level qualification automatically over-rides the lower level qualification.
A type of single course enrolment where students enrol in one or more courses, but completion of the course does not count toward a program. Non-award students incur tuition fees and are not eligible for Commonwealth support.
Any variation to the standard entry requirements. Variations must be justified in the program proposal documentation. See Entry requirements.
A form of assessment where grades are awarded on the basis of a predetermined distribution. Each student's grade is determined in part by how well other students do in the same assessment task/course. The most common form of normative assessment assumes that grades/marks are distributed according to a standard distribution curve.
An abbreviated form for recording a grade (for example ‘HD’ for High Distinction) or grade action (for example ‘I’ for Incomplete).
Refers to the approved series of dates on which offers to places at higher education providers are issued to applicants throughout the year, whether through a tertiary admission centre or directly by a higher education provider.
UniSA activity outside Australia. Programs and courses that are offered offshore are not available to students studying in Australia.
A student undertaking a UniSA program delivered by a partner organisation in an offshore location.
Assessment for the course continues in a subsequent study period or academic year. This is only applicable in research degrees.
A course delivered externally where all communication and access to/distribution of learning resources occurs electronically.
Examination taken on a student’s own computer under regular examination conditions and rules. Examination footage is invigilated at the conclusion of the examination and any breach in examination procedures reported to the academic integrity officer for consideration. For more information on online examinations see The Assessment Policy and Procedure Manual (APPM) (clause 6.7).
A program of study that is offered to domestic and international students either internally, externally or online, from any UniSA Campus.
An examination where any written or printed material is allowed in. No electronic devices are allowed.
Oral defence of the thesis
A part of the PhD examination process whereby students discuss their work in depth with their examiners, defend their thesis and reply to challenges to their arguments while enabling examiners to clarify issues in the thesis. The examiners provide the student with an agreed single set of corrections or revisions required before the award of the qualification can be made.
Involves a student presenting information to an audience (usually other students and /or academic staff) in verbal format. An oral presentation may be an assessment component for a course.
A program of activities run at the beginning of the academic year that is designed to provide students who are new to the University with the information and support they need to become familiar with, and confident about, University life. The program may include online resources, workshops and a range of other activities.
An Australian Government loan program to assist eligible students pay their overseas study expenses. For more information see policy A-47: Student Fees and Loans.
A UniSA student participating in a student mobility program overseas.
Package of programs
This is where a prerequisite program is combined with a principal program of study. For example, students may need to undertake an English language program and/or another prerequisite program to meet the entry requirements for a principal program.
The official certificate that a student receives when an award is conferred. Can also be referred to as a testamur.
A student undertaking less than a full-time study load. See definition for Full-time load.
A part-time student is a student undertaking less than the load specified for full-time status.
An organisation, in conjunction with whom the University offers a program of study or a component of a program of study. The organisation may be a private provider, a professional or industry association, a university or a college.
A provider that delivers a prerequisite program.
Students are given the opportunity to develop skills in making judgements on the quality of each other's work. The peer assessment will usually form part of the final assessment for the course.
Information or an opinion, whether true or not, and whether recorded in a material form or not, about an individual whose identity is apparent or can reasonably be ascertained from the information or opinion (as defined in the Privacy Act 1988 and the Higher Education Support Act 2003). For the purpose of policy, 'personal information' means student personal information and includes, but is not limited to, assignments, examinations, individual student results, student results collated in a list with identification by student number, and practicum, field and clinical placement details.
Includes jointly supervised PhDs, dual award PhDs, jointly badged PhDs, Cotutelle PhDs and joint supervision of a PhD student between a UniSA supervisor and a supervisor from another institution. For more information see RES-19 PhD Program Collaboration.
Plagiarism is a specific and serious form of academic misconduct, and includes:
- direct copying of the work of other persons, from one or more sources, without clearly indicating the origin. This includes both paper-based and electronic sources of material from websites, books, articles, theses, working papers, seminar and conference papers, internal reports, lecture notes or tapes, and visual materials such as photographs, drawings and designs
- using very close paraphrasing of sentences or whole passages without due acknowledgment in the form of referencing the original work
- submitting another student's work in whole or in part, where such assistance is not expressly permitted in the course outline
- use of another person's ideas, work or research data without acknowledgment
- submitting work that has been written by someone else on the student's behalf
- copying computer files, algorithms or computer code without clearly indicating their origin
- submitting work that has been derived, in whole or in part, from another student's work by a process of mechanical transformation (e.g. changing variable names in computer programs)
- in any way appropriating or imitating another's ideas and manner of expressing them where such assistance is not expressly permitted in the course outline
For more information see Section 9 of theAssessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
The formal abbreviation of an award title. For example Bachelor of Arts (Communication Studies) is abbreviated to BA (CommStud).
An advanced level academic program that is normally only available to a person who holds a bachelor degree or diploma.
A person who has already completed a university degree or diploma and is studying at university level for a higher level qualification.
A practical is a learning opportunity that involves a brief presentation by the lecturer or tutor followed by students participating in various exercises or experiments. Practicals provide opportunities for interaction and discussion with the lecturer or tutor and fellow students.
All undergraduate programs at UniSA are required to provide learning experiences that are directly linked to work contexts. The aim is to ensure that students have some understanding of the professional environment they will eventually enter.
A form of placement. Other forms of placement include clinical placement, fieldwork, a guided industry simulation or an industry project. Placements are a core element of many of the programs offered by the University. The learning from placements in both the rural and metropolitan areas provides students with a wide range of experience relevant to their professional award.
Preclusion (following academic review)
A student's enrolment is cancelled and re-admission to the academic program, or to an academic program at the same level in the same discipline, will normally not be considered for two years.
Re-admission to the academic program after preclusion will be through the normal admissions procedures and is not guaranteed. For more information see Section 10 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Preliminary or qualifying program
A higher education award that is an entry requirement for a subsequent award at the same undergraduate or postgraduate level. Preliminary or qualifying programs include:
a. Bachelor programs that are an entry requirement for a subsequent graduate-entry Bachelor or Honours program
b. Diploma programs that are an entry requirement for a subsequent Bachelor program
c. Graduate Diploma and Graduate Certificate programs that are an entry requirement for a subsequent Masters program.
An honours program is not a preliminary or qualifying program because it is not an entry requirement for a subsequent undergraduate award.
A course or group of courses that must be passed before commencing a subsequent course. Prerequisites are listed on the course home page.
Primary Program Director
All programs require a program director to manage the program. In cases where there is more than one program director, there must always be a primary program director who has final authority on program matters.
A prize may be established to acknowledge outstanding academic achievement in a course, group of courses or a program. Selection will be based on academic merit but may be restricted to certain groups of students in accordance with UniSA's equity objectives. A prize may take the form of a monetary reward, equipment, book voucher, or subscription to professional organisations. For more information see policy A-50: Coursework prizes and scholarships or RES9 Higher degree by research scholarships policy (incorporating RTP scholarships policy).
A group of individuals within a given discipline who are formally and publicly recognised as possessing specialised knowledge and skills derived from education and training at a high level, and who apply this knowledge and skills in the interest of others. It is inherent in the definition of a profession that a code of ethics governs the activities of the profession.
A formal process of assessment and review by a relevant accrediting body leading to formal recognition that a program meets the standards required to ensure that graduates possess the competencies necessary to begin professional practice.
Professional accreditation may include the requirement for graduates to gain formal registration with the relevant statutory body before they can begin professional practice.
A regulatory body whose functions include monitoring and maintaining professional practice standards and codes of conduct for the profession. Depending on the profession, the association may also determine the requirements necessary for professional registration, approve courses for education and training, and investigate professional misconduct.
A postgraduate award of three years full-time study or part-time equivalent consisting of a combination of advanced coursework and practice and a program of research. Leads to the award of Doctor of (Discipline).
Recognition by a professional association that a program meets industry standards and requirements. Recognition is on the basis of graduate qualification, and does not involve a formal accreditation process or a detailed review of the curriculum and other elements of the program. Graduates are eligible for membership of the professional association, but are not required to gain formal registration to begin professional practice.
Where professional registration is required, graduates of a program must gain formal registration with the relevant statutory body before they can begin professional practice.
An approved combination of courses undertaken during university study to obtain a degree, certificate or diploma. This can include non-award programs or enabling programs. Example: Bachelor of Engineering, Master of Business, or Doctor of Philosophy.
A four digit alpha code used to identify an academic program on the University's record system, e.g. MBAR. The first letter represents the campus (Magill), the second letter represents the program level (Bachelor) and the last two letters are an abbreviation of the program name (Arts).
An academic staff member who is responsible for providing academic leadership of a program.
An academic staff member who is responsible for providing academic leadership of a UniSA Online program.
Program Graduate Qualities Profile
A combination of the Graduate Qualities that are developed in the various courses in the program.
These should embody a view of what kind of graduates the program seeks to produce.
The school that owns the program into which the service course is being delivered. For more information see policyA-54: Service and collaborative teaching arrangements.
Sets out the sequence of courses to be studied at each year level of a program. Programs should be designed to ensure that the courses students undertake expose them to progressively more complex aspects of the major themes in the program, and that the intellectual demands are sequenced developmentally. Levels of courses within a program should be differentiated by their complexity in content, demands in assessment, and in some cases prerequisite requirements.
Program Schedule Notes
Should include descriptive requirements of the program e.g.
- clinical or field work / practice, industrial or practical experience requirements
- projects, vacation reports
- options or elective studies
- part-time of full-time basis
- other requirements e.g. driver's licence, medical examination, First Aid Certificate
- special requirement for external students e.g. attendance at intensive schools
- groupings of courses into minors, majors, sub-majors and extended majors
Program Schedule Rules
Should include prescriptive requirements of the program e.g.
- rules for progress through the program, if different from normal
- clinical / industrial codes of behaviour
The process where UniSA, as a result of an approved program change, determines that a transition arrangement is required. Appendix A of policy A-45: Program Transition describes the administrative arrangements that are required to effect program and student transition.
Assessments that occur during the study period and prior to a final summative assessment.
A collection of required readings such as articles or extracts from books and other sources compiled by the lecturer for student use during a course.
Recognition of prior learning (RPL)
It is the policy of the University used to assess an individual’s relevant prior learning (including formal, informal, and non-formal learning) to determine the credit that may be granted towards completion of a University award programs.. The prior learning may be from:
- a recognised higher education provider
- a TAFE or other Vocational Education Training (VET) provider
- a professional body, enterprise, private educational institution, or other similar body
- work experience or other forms of practical experience, including voluntary work
- life experience
For more information see policy A-13: Recognition of Prior Learning.
- a document
- any form of database
- a photograph or other pictorial representation of a person
but does not include:
- a generally available publication, for example an award conferral
- anything kept in a library, art gallery or museum for the purposes of reference, study or exhibition
- letters or other articles in transit by post
Strict religious obligations to be observed by followers of a religious doctrine that may place some restrictions on a student’s capacity to participate in, or complete, an assessment task.
An assessment task is marked again by a second assessor, without any further work by the student. The second assessor is not provided with details of the student's original mark. The same range of marks used on the original assessment must be available for re-marking. The second mark stands, whether it is higher or lower. No further re-marking will be permitted. For more information see Section 5 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Research Education Portfolio Leader
Includes Research Degrees Coordinators, Associate Heads of School: Research and Program Directors: Professional Doctorate (Research) and their equivalents.
Student enrolment in a higher degree by research (HDR) program, including Doctorate, Masters by Research and Professional Doctorate programs that contain more than 66% research. Higher degree by research students remain enrolled throughout their candidature and examination. Enrolment ceases upon completion of the research degree, withdrawal or suspension.
Research period is an administrative period during which a research degree student is enrolled. Research degree students are enrolled in two research periods per year, the dates of which are published in the Academic Calendar.
Research Training Program (RTP)
Provides Commonwealth-funding for research candidates. Forms of support available may consist of a fee offset, a stipend for general living costs, or allowances related to the ancillary cost of research degrees, as specified in the scholarship offer.
For more information see Higher Degree by Research Scholarships Policy (incorporating RTP scholarships Policy)
Any combination of a thesis, dissertation, and portfolio of work, exegesis, artefact, published articles or written project, as specified for the particular program.
A student is permitted to make substantial alterations, additions or amendments to an assessment task they have failed. The assessment is then re-submitted to the original assessor within a specified timeframe. For more information see Section 5 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
For continuous assessment, a result is comprised of a grade and, where applicable, a percentage mark. For final assessment, a result is comprised of a grade only. The final result enables the University to certify a student's academic performance.
Review of Progress
Twice-yearly planning and review cycle to monitor the progress of each higher degree by research student's research project. For more information on Reviews of Progress see 8.0 Monitoring Progress in the Academic Regulations for Higher Degrees by Research.
An Australian Government loan program to assist eligible students to pay their student services and amenities fee. For more information see policy A-47: Student fees and loans.
The code assigned to an academic program by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre and used by applicants on SATAC application forms.
An award selected on merit, including but not limited to academic merit, to assist a student to undertake or complete a program of study at UniSA over a nominated period of time, in accordance with the selection criteria. A scholarship may take the form of periodic payments to the student or a reduction in specified costs such as tuition fees for the duration of the scholarship. For more information see policy A-50: Coursework Scholarships and Prizes.
An award selected on merit to assist a research degree student to undertake or complete a program of research at the University, in accordance with the selection criteria. A scholarship may take the form of monetary payment or assistance with specified costs (such as tuition fees or ancillary costs). It may also be known as a grant. For more information see policy Higher Degree by Research Scholarships Policy (incorporating RTP scholarships Policy)
The mechanisms used to choose eligible applicants for admission to a program
Is the ranking mechanism that tertiary admission centres (TACs) and most universities use to assess admission to a course or program. A person’s Selection Rank (ATAR) can include the ATAR plus any adjustments they are eligible for, other contributions calculated on the basis of work experience or previous non-secondary study, portfolio assessments, or results of Special Tertiary Admissions Tests etc.
Universities are 'self-accrediting'. This means that they have legislative authority to accredit their own programs and are responsible for their academic standards. Universities must have appropriate quality assurance processes in place, including peer assessment processes, external examination of higher degrees, and the involvement of professional bodies in the accreditation of particular programs.
A form of assessment where students are asked to assess their own work against a set of criteria. The self-assessment may contribute to the overall student grade for that course.
A gathering of a small group of students and a lecturer or tutor, and usually runs for 1-3 hours. A seminar usually includes a presentation by the lecturer or tutor or by a student or group of students. Students are expected to prepare for and participate actively in seminars by giving a paper, answering questions, or discussing subject matter in small groups.
Personal information about an individual's racial or ethnic origin, political opinion, membership of a political association, religious beliefs or affiliations, physical or mental health status, disability, philosophical beliefs, membership of a professional or trade association, membership of a trade union, sexual preferences or practices, or criminal record.
Any course included in a program in order to achieve the objectives of the program that is provided by a school other than the school that owns the program. For more information see policy A-54: Service and collaborative teaching arrangements.
A teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities. While not all undergraduate programs at UniSA will provide opportunities for such learning, for many programs it does provide another avenue for engaging students in learning.
Any arrangement for the design and/or provision of a course or part of a course to students from another school in order to achieve the objectives of the program
A specific arrangement where two or more schools agree to jointly own a course. This joint ownership is recorded on the course statement and student record system.
A program of study that does not lead to the conferral of a University award. Short programs are usually professional in nature or undertaken for a specific purpose. For more information see policy A-53: Short programs.
Short term study or placement
A type of student mobility program that enables domestic and international students to study at an overseas host provider where there is no formal student exchange agreement in place. These student mobility programs involve at least 4.5 units of study. The study program is negotiated with, and approved by, the program director. The study undertaken at the host entity may be approved as credit towards an academic award of the home institution. For more information see policy A-36: Student mobility.
Significant research component
A course or group of courses assessed solely on the basis of research work produced by the student, and comprises at least one third but less than two thirds of the total EFTSL for that program. Research work that is not deemed under this definition to be 'significant' is managed as a coursework component under UniSA policy. Programs with two thirds or more research are deemed to be research programs to be managed by research policies and regulations. For more information see policy A-49: Postgraduate coursework programs with a significant research component.
Single course enrolment
Non-award or audit enrolment that does not contribute to the requirements of a program.
A form of secondary assessment granted to assist students to improve their final grade for a course, where completion of their final assessment was affected by unexpected or exceptional circumstances. For more information see Section 7 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Special Entry applicant
A person who does not meet the entry requirements for a particular academic program and is admitted through special entry provisions.
Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT)
A multiple choice test designed to assess an applicant's level of competency in skills considered important for successful tertiary study. STAT is a form of aptitude testing.
A component of an academic program that involves study in a particular aspect of a broad discipline area (e.g. Applied Geology within a Bachelor of Science). A specialisation is included on a student's parchment (see Academic Plan).
The amount charged to Commonwealth supported students as a contribution towards the cost of their education. UniSA, in accordance with the Higher Education Support Act (HESA 2003), determines and publishes student contribution amounts on an annual basis.
Student Exchange agreement
A bilateral agreement that has been formalised between UniSA and an overseas educational institution.
Student Exchange program
A full study period exchange that is extended to domestic and international students to provide an opportunity for study at an overseas institution with an international exchange agreement. For more information see the Student exchange website.
Student Identity Number (ID)
The unique number given to each student during the enrolment process. It is used as a means of identification for all official University purposes.
Student Learning Entitlement (SLE)
The number of years a student can access commonwealth assistance to study. This is usually seven years unless the program takes more than five years of full-time study to complete. SLE was abolished from 1 Jan 2012 and therefore only applies to studies in 2005-2011
Student mobility program
A UniSA approved opportunity to participate in overseas study and/or practice-based learning. Student mobility programs include:
- formal student exchange
- study abroad,
- short term programs, and
- study tours.
For more information see policy A-36: Student mobility.
Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF)
A fee that universities and other approved higher education providers can charge enrolled students for specific student services and amenities of a non-academic nature in accordance with HESA 2003. For more information see policy A-47: Student fees and loans.
A teaching period where students spend time in a studio learning environment.
A type of student mobility program that enables domestic and international students to study at an overseas host provider where there is no formal student exchange agreement in place. These student mobility programs involve at least 4.5 units of study. The study program is negotiated with, and approved by, the program director. The study undertaken at the host entity may be approved as credit towards an academic award of the home institution. For more information see policy A-36: Student Mobility.
The period of time during which all aspects of course delivery occur, including induction and orientation, reading, preparation, contact hours and assessment. Secondary assessment may be scheduled outside the study period.
A type of student mobility program that enables domestic and international students to study at an overseas host provider where there is no formal student exchange agreement in place. These student mobility programs involve at least 4.5 units of study. The study program is negotiated with, and approved by, the program director. The study undertaken at the host entity may be approved as credit towards an academic award of the home institution. For more information see policy A-36: Student Mobility.
A formal method of assessment that provides information to judge the extent to which a student has achieved course or program objectives. Summative assessment is used to determine a final grades. Final summative assessment occurs at the end of a study period.
Means the team responsible for providing supervision to a research degree student. The panel must include a minimum of two UniSA supervisors, one of whom will be the principal supervisor. Supervisory panels can also include experts from other disciplines and end-user advisors external to the University, as appropriate for the research degree student's discipline and project. For more information see the Code of good practice: research degrees management and supervision.
Used as a secondary assessment to offer students an opportunity to gain a supplementary pass (SP) in a course approved for supplementary assessment. Supplementary assessment may involve an examination or other forms of assessment. For more information see Section 7 of the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.
Application made through a tertiary admission centre, namely SATAC, QTAC, UAC, VTAC, TISC and University of Tasmania, in relation to applications to study in that state.
Tax File Number (TFN)
A 9 digit number issued by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) for everything tax-related, including making repayments on a HECS debt.
The period during which teaching activities such as lectures, tutorials, practicals, workshops and placements are scheduled during a study period. This is represented by the start and end dates of scheduled classes.
The provision of learning experiences that foster connections between learning, teaching and research, and strengthen student development of the Qualities of a University of South Australia Graduate. At the core of the teaching-research nexus is the concept of critical enquiry.
There are many different types of learning environment that can be used e.g.:
- capstone projects
- open-ended investigative projects
- projects in industry/professions
- projects in research centres and institutes
- problem-based activities
Terminating pass (TP)
A final grade that allows a course to be included in a student's progression through their program, but prohibits the course from being used as a prerequisite. If a student wishes to continue with that stream of study, they can either seek permission to complete an alternative prerequisite, or accept a fail for the course and attempt it for a second time. The University ceased the awarding of terminating passes in 2017.
A book that contains material that is central to the understanding of a course. Students are normally required to purchase, or have continuous access to, text books listed as learning resources for a course.
Transcript of academic record
An official record of a student's complete enrolment history at the University of South Australia, including a listing of all courses and results undertaken at the University, and details of degrees awarded and prizes achieved.
Once Academic Board has approved a decision to withdraw, replace or significantly amend a program, the relevant school is responsible for developing a transition plan for each student (or group of students), and a communication plan for all students enrolled in the program. Campus Central is responsible for implementing the plan. For more information see policy A-45: Program Transition.
The fee charged for a course or program of study offered by UniSA. Tuition fee includes non-award fees, international student fees, offshore student fees, cross-institutional fees for students who are not Commonwealth supported, fees for domestic research candidates who exceed their funded time, fees for domestic students in fee-paying places, but does not include the student contribution amount or other fees related to incidental costs.
A tutorial is a learning opportunity in which students discuss the key topics, concepts and ideas of the course with their tutors. Tutorials are closely linked to assessment and often involve small group discussions and group work. All students are expected to prepare for tutorials by reading required material and preparing questions and/or answers to questions. Students are also expected to participate actively in class discussions and small group activities. Tutorials complement the lectures given for a course and usually run for 1-2 hours.
An academic program of study leading to a qualification, such as an associate degree, diploma or bachelor degree. It includes an honours degree.
A student who is undertaking a program of study leading to an undergraduate award, such as a Diploma, Associate Degree or Bachelor Degree.
UniSA student mobility travel grants
Funding that students may apply for to assist with costs associated with a student mobility program. For more information see the Student exchange website.
Represents the hours of student work required for a course. One unit represents approximately 35 hours of student work, including contact and non-contact time. The normal full time load is 18 units each half year or 36 units over a full academic year. A three-year degree requires 108 units.
The University Calendar is published annually in January and provides information on:
- the structure of programs, including the requirement for satisfactory completion of the programs
- schedules and course syllabuses for all programs offered in any particular year
- majors, minors and undergraduate elective courses
University of South Australia’s Students Association (USASA)
The University of South Australia Student Association is a not for profit, student run organisation that exists to support the student body at UniSA. For more information visit USASA.
USASA Advocacy Officer
A USASA staff member responsible for providing UniSA students with information, advice and services in relation to their academic performance and progress.
(That is after the census date) is the last day on which a student can withdraw from a course and have it recorded as "withdrawn" on their academic record. The full cost of tuition fees or student contribution amounts is charged for all withdrawals made after the census date, including up to and after the withdrawal date. A 'W' notation does not contribute towards the calculation of a student's grade point average (GPA).
(That is after the withdrawal date) is the last day on which a student can withdraw from a course and have it recorded as "withdrawn-fail" on their academic record. Withdrawals made after the nominated withdrawal-fail date are recorded as fail grades on the academic record and give no indication that the student withdrew rather than failed their assessment. The full cost of tuition fees or student contribution amounts is charged for all withdrawals made after the census date, including up to and after the withdrawal-fail date. A 'WF' notation contributes a grade point of 1.5 towards the calculation of a student's grade point average (GPA).
Work experience in industry (WEI)
In accordance with the Act, student load does not include unsupported WEI courses. The following considerations apply in determining whether a course is a work experience in industry course:
a. Courses that involve industry components, in which the University directs learning and performance, are not work experience in industry courses. Students will pay tuition fees or student contributions for these units. These courses are included in calculating student load for Commonwealth Grant Scheme purposes.
b. Courses that involve industry components, in which learning and performance are supported, but not directed by the University, are supported work experience in industry courses. Enrolments in these courses will not be included in calculating student load for Commonwealth Grant Scheme purposes. Students will pay tuition fees or student contributions.
c. Courses that involve industry components, in which learning and performance are neither supported nor directed by the University, are unsupported work experience in industry courses. Enrolments in these courses will not be included in calculating student load for Commonwealth Grant Scheme purposes. Students in such courses will not be charged tuition fees or student contributions
A workshop usually involves a short introduction in which a specific problem is identified and presented to students by the lecturer or tutor. This is followed by discussion and activities in which students work collaboratively to investigate, analyse and formulate a solution to the problem. Outcomes may be presented by groups or by individual students at the completion of the workshop.
Areas of study and research
- UniSA Cancer Research Institute
and Social Sciences
- Art, Architecture and Design
- Communication, International Studies and Languages
- Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy
- Barbara Hardy Institute
- Australian Centre for Child Protection
- Asia Pacific Centre for Work Health and Safety
- Behaviour-Brain-Body Research Centre
- Centre for Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience
- Centre for Islamic Thought and Education
- China-Australia Centre for Sustainable Development
- Creative People, Places and Products Research Concentration
- Design Research for Health & Wellbeing
- Digital Transformations Research Group
- Hawke EU Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence
- Research Centre for Languages and Cultures
IT, Engineering and
- Future Industries Institute
- UniSA College