Frequently Asked Questions - Future Students
To help you find your way around these questions we've divided them into subsections.
Click on the links below to take you to that section or browse through them all.
- Questions about ADMISSIONS
- Questions about STUDY
- Questions about COSTS AND SCHOLARSHIPS
- Questions about FURTHER STUDY
- Questions about OTHER
- How do I apply to go to University?
- What will the ATAR be next year?
- I'm not going to get the marks to get into Psychology/Medical Science/Nutrition. What should I do?
- Are there prerequisites?
- What level of maths do I need to study at school in order to study Science at uni?
- I want to go overseas for a year. Can I defer?
- Can I get into the Talented Student Program?
- Is it possible to apply for credit for previous study undertaken at a tertiary institution or TAFE?
- Is there a different UAC code for Advanced degrees?
- If I have the ATAR for the Bachelor of Science, does that mean I'm also eligible for the Bachelor of Science (Advanced)?
There are different application procedures depending on what type of student you are, but most students will need to apply through UAC (the Universities Admission Centre) in August/September of the year before they wish to commence studying. UAC is a central admission body for all NSW and ACT universities. Students are able to choose preferences for NSW or ACT universities on their UAC form.
The Faculty does not pre-set its ATARs and so it is impossible to answer this question. However, this year's ATARs give a good indication of next year's ATAR cut offs.
I'm not going to get the marks to get into Psychology/Medical Science/Nutrition, but I really want to study this course. What should I do?
You should consider studying a year of the Bachelor of Science and then applying to transfer to your desired course after a whole year of study. Many options available in the specialist courses are also available to students in the BSc.
The University does not have prerequisites, only assumed knowledge. This means you can get into units of study without studying the required subjects, but you should make an effort to get up to speed in the assumed knowledge before you start. Bridging courses can help you get up to speed and are run between enrolment and semester commencement. Students receive more information on bridging courses during enrolment.
All Bachelor of Science students must study 12 credit points of maths. Different levels of mathematics are offered which have differing levels of assumed knowledge. This program guide to first year mathematics can help you determine what high school maths you need for particular uni level maths subjects. Generally, students who wish to continue to study maths or computer science in second year should have studied 3-unit maths at school. The Mathematics Learning Centre offers bridging courses in mathematics.
Students coming straight from school can gain a one-year deferment. Information included with your UAC offer will explain how to apply for deferment. If you decide to defer, you do this through UAC.
Please note: Scholarships cannot be deferred.
Students are invited by the Dean of Science to be part of the Talented Student Program (TSP). Usually this is restricted to students who came in the top 2% of the HSC, participated in an Olympiad or excelled in a particular HSC subject.
Credit can be offered for previous study undertaken at a tertiary institution or TAFE in accordance with the resolutions for the course in which you are enrolled in the Faculty of Science. The total amount of credit granted may not be greater than 96 credit points for most degrees and may not include more than 48 credit points from a course which has been conferred. A limit of 48 junior (first-year level) credit points applies to the Bachelor of Medical Science.
The Bachelor of Science course and Bachelor of Science (Advanced) course have different UAC codes.
Each combined degree (eg. Science/Commerce, Science/Arts etc.) has its own UAC code. However, there is no separate UAC code for the advanced science stream within a combined degree. If you meet the requirements for the advanced stream of the Science degree, you will have the opportunity to take up the advanced science subjects in a combined degree.
If I have the ATAR for the Bachelor of Science, does that mean I'm also eligible for the Bachelor of Science (Advanced)?
No. The Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Science (Advanced) have different UAC codes and different ATAR requirements. For combined courses you must meet the ATAR requirements of the Advanced course to be able to study it.
- Do I have to study Physics/Biology/Chemistry and Maths in the BSc?
- Which mathematics units of study should I do in my course?
- I'm interested in studying Medicine or Dentistry. What should I do?
- Can I study "Medical Science" subjects in the BSc?
- Can I study advanced subjects in the BSc?
- What's the difference between studying the Bachelor of Science (Advanced) and studying Advanced subjects in the BSc?
- What's the difference between the Talented Student Program and the BSc (Advanced)?
- What's the difference between studying Psychology in a BPsych and studying Psychology in the science, arts or economics degrees?
- Can I study forensic science at Sydney?
- What can I combine Science with?
- Can I combine the Bachelor of Science (Advanced) with any other degrees?
The only compulsory units of study in the BSc are 12 credit points of maths. You no longer have to study either physics, biology or chemistry in your first year (unless you want to) although some departments either require or recommend that you take physics, biology and/or chemistry in first year.
All Faculty of Science courses require the completion of a certain number of mathematics units of study.
To help you select the right mathematics units for you, the School of Mathematics and Statistics have prepared an Undergraduate Guide.
The University of Sydney runs a Graduate Medical Program and Graduate Dentistry Program. These programs are only available as postgraduate study, which means that you first have to complete an undergraduate course in order to be eligible to apply for the graduate programs.
You can enter these programs from a variety of courses from a number of different universities. Students are best advised to study a course in which they are interested. The Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Medical Science, or Bachelor of Science (Advanced) are good choices for students interested in a career in medical or dental research.
Enquiries should be directed to the Sydney Medical School or the Faculty of Dentistry for more information.
You can undertake units of study in Pharmacology, Cell Pathology, Anatomy and Histology or Physiology in the Bachelor of Science.
Advanced subjects are available to qualified students in both the Bachelor of Science and the specialist BSc courses. Schools and departments have different requirements for entry into advanced programs. Students may also study advanced subjects in most of the Faculty's other courses.
What's the difference between studying the Bachelor of Science (Advanced) and studying Advanced subjects in the BSc?
The same opportunities to study advanced subjects are available to qualified students in the Science and the Advanced Science degrees. One small difference is that in the BSc (Advanced), students have to study a minimum number of units at the Advanced level. Another is that students of the BSc (Advanced) will have "Advanced" written on their testamur. Students interested in studying in just one Advanced area are best advised to enrol in the BSc.
Advanced courses are for students with excellent results in the HSC. Usually this is limited to students who receive an ATAR over 90 or excel in one particular Science subject. The Talented Student Program is for students who achieve an ATAR greater than 99, or have participated in a Science or Mathematics Olympiad, or have excelled in a particular Science or Mathematics subject. The content of the Talented Student Program differs from department to department. Some departments allow students to study third year options in first year, others allow students to fast track their degree and others allow students to undertake research projects during their undergraduate study.
What's the difference between studying Psychology in a BPsych and studying Psychology in the science, arts or economics degrees?
Students in the 4-year Bachelor of Psychology course have the opportunity to study more psychology options than students in other courses. If you wish to become a practising psychologist, you need to complete a 4-year Honours-level course. Students choosing whether to study psychology in the Science, Arts or Economics courses should choose their course according to their other interests but should be aware that psychology at Sydney is studied from a scientific perspective.
Read the FAQ on the School of Psychology website for more information.
Whilst the University does not teach a course called "Forensic Science," you can enter this career through a Science course or Medical Science course. You should avoid narrowly focused courses labelled "forensic science" as career options in this area are very limited. If you're interested in forensic psychology you are best advised to take the Bachelor of Psychology or the Bachelor of Science majoring in psychology.
Science can be combined with Arts, Engineering, Education, Commerce, Nursing and Law. In the Bachelor of Science degree, you can study a maximum of 48 credit points of units of non-science study, eg. Arts. For more information about combined degrees, please refer to the Science Handbook.
Any degree which can be combined with the Bachelor of Science can be combined with the Bachelor of Science (Advanced).
Most domestic undergraduate students are liable to pay HECS HELP fees, which can be paid up front, or deferred to the taxation system and paid after your income exceeds a certain amount. More information about student contribution rates.
International undergraduate students can find out the cost of study by clicking on a course of interest in our course list.
The only scholarships for which students need apply are the University of Sydney Undergraduate Scholarships (all degrees, previously known as the Alumni Scholarships) and the University of Sydney Distinguished Undergraduate Scholarships. Information about scholarships is sent to school careers advisers in July. Students do not need to apply for Faculty-specific scholarships - they are awarded on the basis of a student's ATAR. More information on scholarships.
If you wish to become a science teacher, you can study the Master of Teaching course after you have completed your Science course. You are required to take an appropriate combination of teaching subjects in your undergraduate course. For more information about the MTeach, please check the Faculty of Education and Social Work website.
- Does the Faculty of Science run information days or events where I can find out more about studying Science at Sydney?
- Does the Faculty of Science run any programs for school students?
- I have a specific question or would like to know more. Can I contact the Faculty?
Does the Faculty of Science run information days or events where I can find out more about studying Science at Sydney?
The University holds Sydney Open Day on the last Saturday in August each year. This is an excellent opportunity to find out more about what the University offers. The University also holds an Information Day in early January where you can speak to academic advisors about your course options.
The Faculty of Science runs gifted and talented programs, after school science programs and olympiad training programs. Information on these is available in the Outreach section of our website. Other programs are run for Science Alliance members.
For more information, please contact the Faculty of Science Information Office.