Graduate Diploma in Psychology (GDP)

What is the Graduate Diploma in Psychology?

The Graduate Diploma in Psychology (GDP) enables graduates to complete an undergraduate major in Psychology. The GDP has been fully accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC). On successful completion of the GDP, graduates will be eligible to apply for entry to a fourth year of study in Psychology (4th Year Honours or equivalent).

Am I eligible to apply for the GDP?

Applicants for the GDP must hold a Bachelor's degree from the University of Sydney or another degree deemed equivalent by the Faculty of Science.

Applicants must not previously have completed a major in Psychology. See I completed a psychology major more than 10 years ago - am I still eligible to apply for the GDP?

Applicants must have already successfully completed 12 credit points of Junior Psychology at the University of Sydney (currently PSYC 1001 and 1002) or equivalent units at another university within the last 10 years. These units must be part of a sequence of study that has been accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC)

Intending applicants who have not already done so may study PSYC1001 and 1002 as non-degree students before applying for the GDP. Information about the non-degree programs in psychology.

Either one of these units of study (1001 or 1002) may be completed in Summer School. Please see the Psychology Future Students Summer School page for more information.

Will my degree be considered for entry into the GDP?

You are required to hold a three year Bachelor's Degree (see Am I eligible to apply for the GDP?). The only way that any particular degree can be assessed for equivalence is to submit an application (there is no fee for this). Information regarding how to do this can be found on the Future Students Graduate Diploma in Psychology webpage.

I completed a psychology major more than 10 years ago - am I still eligible for the GDP?

If you completed a psychology major in an undergraduate degree more than ten years ago then you are eligible to apply. However, the 1st year sequence of an APAC accredited degree will also need to be completed to meet all the requirements for entry to the GDP.

I am an International student - can I apply for the GDP?

At present, International Students are not eligible to apply for the GDP. This is because some components of the course can only be undertaken on a part-time basis and International Student visa requirements state that a full-time enrolment must be maintained. See the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection for further information.


How do I complete the pre-requisite subjects (PSYC1001 & PSYC1002) at the University of Sydney?

You can complete PSYC1001 and 1002 at The University of Sydney as a non-degree student.

PSYC1001 & 1002 are not sequential, so you can complete them in any order. PSYC1001 is offered in first semester, while PSYC1002 is offered in second semester. Both Units of Study are also offered in Summer School, however it is recommended you complete only one of these units of study in Summer School.

What if I have completed introductory psychology units at another institution?

For an introductory sequence of units to be accepted for entry into the GDP, it needs to constitute a whole 1st year of APAC accredited study. Information about who offers APAC accredited courses can be found here: Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC)

The only way to check if the first year sequence at another institution will be accepted for entry into the GDP is to make an application (there is no fee for this).


What will I study in the GDP?

The GDP consists of Year 2 (Intermediate) and Year 3 (Senior) units of study identical to those completed by undergraduate students studying for a major in Psychology. Award of the GDP requires the successful completion of a minimum of 48 credit points.

You can find the unit of study outlines, giving detailed descriptions of the content at the Current Students Syllabus Archive webpage.

How long will it take to complete the GDP?

Two possible study plans for the GDP are shown in the tables below. Also see What if I need more time to complete the GDP?

GRADUATE DIPLOMA IN PSYCHOLOGY - POSSIBLE STUDY PLAN A
Semester 1 Year 1 PSYC2011 Brain and Behaviour *
    PSYC2012 Statistics and Research Methods for Psychology *
Semester 2 Year 1 PSYC2013 Cognitive and Social Psychology *
    PSYC2014 Personality and Intelligence I *
       
Semester 1 Year 2 PSYC3018 Abnormal Psychology *
    Plus one of the following:
    HPSC3023 History and Philosophy of Psychology & Psychiatry **
    PSYC3011 Learning and Behaviour
    PSYC3012 Cognition, Language and Thought
    PSYC3015 Personality and Intelligence II
    PSYC3017 Social Psychology
       
Semester 2 Year 2 Any 2 of the following:
    PSYC3010 Advanced Statistics for Psychology ***
    PSYC3013 Perceptual Systems
    PSYC3014 Behavioural and Cognitive Neuroscience
    PSYC3016 Developmental Psychology
    PSYC3020 Applications of Psychological Science


* Compulsory units.

** This (HPSC3023) is available for Senior psychology students and will count towards a major in Psychology. Successful completion of this unit of study is essential for students intending to take the Theoretical Thesis option in Psychology Honours.

*** Successful completion of this unit of study (PSYC3010) is essential for students intending to apply for 4th year Psychology Honours.

GRADUATE DIPLOMA IN PSYCHOLOGY - ALTERNATIVE STUDY PLAN B
Semester 2 Year 1 PSYC2013 Cognitive and Social Psychology *
    PSYC2014 Personality and Intelligence I *
Semester 1 Year 2 PSYC2011 Brain and Behaviour *
    PSYC2012 Statistics and Research Methods for Psychology *
    PSYC3018  Abnormal Psychology *
    Plus one of the following:
    HPSC3023 History and Philosophy of Psychology & Psychiatry **
    PSYC3011 Learning and Behaviour
    PSYC3012 Cognition, Language and Thought
    PSYC3015 Personality and Intelligence II
    PSYC3017 Social Psychology
       
Semester 2 Year 2 Any 2 of the following:
    PSYC3010 Advanced Statistics for Psychology ***
    PSYC3013 Perceptual Systems
    PSYC3014 Behavioural and Cognitive Neuroscience
    PSYC3016 Developmental Psychology
    PSYC3020 Applications of Psychological Science


* Compulsory units.

** This (HPSC3023) is available for Senior psychology students and will count towards a major in Psychology. Successful completion of this unit of study is essential for students intending to take the Theoretical Thesis option in Psychology Honours.

*** Successful completion of this unit of study (PSYC3010) is essential for students intending to apply for 4th year Psychology Honours.

The second study plan allows for entry into the GDP half-way through the academic year (July) and completion in three semesters.

Please note:

While classes for some units of study are available in the early evening, classes for most units of study are offered only during the day. Therefore, it is not possible to complete the GDP if you cannot attend a substantial number of classes during the day.

For more information on the content of the various units of study, please consult the Faculty of Science handbook at:
http://www.usyd.edu.au/handbooks/science/00_introduction.shtml

What if I need more time to complete the GDP?

If opting to study part-time, the GDP must be completed within 4 years. If you require longer, you would need to start the program again.

What time committment is required during semester?

You will generally need to attend 4 hours of lectures and tutorials, per week, per Unit of Study. These may be spread across the week, taking place at different times on different days. It is expected that further study will be undertaken outside of these hours.

Are any units available by distance education? Are there evening and weekend classes?

The Graduate Diploma in Psychology is a completely on-campus course. There are no weekend or block mode options and only limited tutorial classes in some units of study that are offered after 4pm.Therefore, it is not possible to complete the GDP if you cannot attend a substantial number of classes during the day.

What will my timetable look like?

While the timetable can change from semester to semester, the current timetable is available here on the Current Students Timetable page. This will give you an indication of what your timetable may look like.

As this is an on-campus course, it is not possible to complete the GDP if you cannot attend a substantial number of classes during the day.


Can I get credit for previous study in psychology?

You can apply for exemptions for up to 24 credit points if you have already completed studies which the Faculty deems equivalent to those in the GDP. You must have completed these units of study within the previous ten years and within an APAC accredited degree program. Equivalent study at an overseas university may be acceptable.

If you completed these studies in Psychology somewhere other than at the School of Psychology, University of Sydney, full details of each unit of study will be required, including the syllabus, number of class hours and an original transcript of results.

What are the fees? Is Commonwealth support available?

Up-front fees apply. Please visit the Faculty of Science web page for information about Fees & Financial Information:
http://www.science.usyd.edu.au/fstudent/postgrad/fees.shtml

What recognition will I receive from the University when I graduate?

You will receive an official transcript from the University confirming that you have completed the Graduate Diploma in Psychology and detailing your results for each unit of study.


What options will I have for further study in Psychology after the GDP?

After you successfully complete the GDP, you may then apply for further study in Psychology at the University of Sydney. You may apply to do Psychology 4 (Honours) if you receive an average grade of credit or better in Years 2 and 3. However, quota restrictions apply and an average grade above credit may be necessary for admission.

Only March semester entry is possible for Honours. If you would like to learn more about the Honours year, please refer to the Honours Studies website.

Can I pursue higher degree studies after the GDP?

After successful completion of Psychology 4 (Honours), you are eligible to apply for entry into the following higher degree studies at the University of Sydney:
Master of Clinical Psychology; or Master of Clinical Psychology & PhD
Masters of Science (MSc) by research or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) by research

What professional recognition can I obtain with the GDP?

Registration as a professional psychologist in Australia is overseen by the Psychology Board of Australia. Provisional registration as a professional psychologist requires the completion of an APAC approved 4 year psychology program (such as the GDP plus honours). Full registration as a professional psychologist also requires an APAC approved fifth and sixth year of graduate study in professional psychology; or one year of APAC approved graduate study in professional psychology plus one year of a Board approved internship; or two years of a Board approved internship. At Sydney, you can gain full registration by completing the Master of Clinical Psychology; or Master of Clinical Psychology & PhD

Full membership of the Australian Psychological Society requires an Honours or Honours equivalent fourth year, followed by a fifth and sixth year of postgraduate study.

Further information about membership of the Australian Psychological Society may be obtained from their web site: http://www.psychology.org.au/


How do I apply for the GDP?

Applications must be submitted online. Follow the link below, read the information under "How to apply", then click the blue "Apply Now" button:

Apply for the Graduate Diploma in Psychology

Application deadlines are posted on the link above.


For general and administrative matters concerning the GDP, contact the School of Psychology: +61 2 9351 7327.

When should I apply for the GDP?

Applications are accepted for commencement in either Semester 1 or 2. If you are in the process of completing the pre-requisite units of study the closing date may be before you receive your results for the final unit of study.

In such cases, you should apply for the GDP by the advertised deadline (see How do I apply for the GDP?) for the semester you intend to commence the GDP, assuming that you will successfully complete the unit of study. This includes students completing either PSYC1001 or PSYC1002 in the Summer School.

    Application Timeline for entry into the Graduate Diploma in Psychology
Option Semester Unit of Study  When to apply
 A  Semester 1  PSYC1001  
 Semester 2  PSYC1002  Lodge application by due date in the application link (see above).
 B  Semester 2  PSYC1002  Lodge application by due date in the application link (see above).
 Summer School  PSYC1001  
 C  Summer School  PSYC1002  
 Semester 1  PSYC1001 Lodge application before Jun 30th deadline

If you are made an offer before receiving the results of a pre-requisite unit of study, it will be a conditional offer. The offer will become final upon successful completion of the pre-requisite unit, allowing you to enroll in the GDP. In some instances the timing can be quite close to the beginning of classes.