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Mathematics course prerequisites

All you need to know about our mathematics prerequisites
We have mathematics prerequisites for some courses to help you thrive in your degree and prepare you for future career challenges.

Who does it apply to?

The mathematics course prerequisites will apply to you if you meet any of the following criteria.

Applying with a secondary education (Year 12) qualification

  • If you are a domestic or international student applying with a secondary education (Year 12) qualification in Australia, such as the NSW Higher School Certificate (HSC), any Australian state or territory Year 12 qualification, the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma and the General Certificate of Education (GCE) A Level.
  • If you are a domestic or international student applying with an Australian secondary education (Year 12) qualification from outside Australia (applies to all Australian state and territory Year 12 qualifications).

If you are an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander student applying through the Gadigal program and do not achieve a Band 4 in Mathematics (or Mathematics Advanced from 2020) you may be admitted if you demonstrate the capacity to succeed in coursework at a university level, and successfully complete an approved mathematics prerequisite course in your first year of study or where required, in a subsequent attempt.

Applying with a non-secondary qualification

  • If you are a domestic student applying with previous higher education study, such as:
    • Minimum one year of full-time or equivalent part-time study in a bachelor’s degree.
    • A completed Australian Qualification Framework (AQF) Diploma.
  • If you are a domestic student applying with an approved preparation program or other qualification accepted by the University, see Mature-age Entry Scheme 2020 (pdf, 3.7MB).
  • If you are an international student applying with the University of Sydney Foundation Program.

What are the requirements?

To find out what mathematics course prerequisites apply to you, select what qualification you will be applying with.

Applying with a secondary education (Year 12) qualification requires you to achieve the following:

Qualification Mathematics subject Required result
NSW HSC Mathematics* or Mathematics Advanced (from 2020) Band 4
Mathematics Extension 1 or 2 Band E4
ACT Senior Secondary Certificate (ACT SSC) Mathematical Methods (Major) or Specialist Mathematics (Major) 142
QLD Certificate of Education (QCE) Mathematics B H
SA Certificate of Education (SACE) Mathematical Methods B-
NT Certificate of Education and Training (NTCET) Mathematical Methods B-
TAS Certificate of Education (TCE) Mathematical Methods 4 CA
VIC Certificate of Education (VCE) Mathematical Methods (CAS) or Mathematical Methods (CAS) CBE 30
WA Certificate of Education (WACE) Mathematics: Methods ATAR 58

*Not Mathematics Standard

The following mathematics prerequisites only apply to students undertaking the IB or GCE A Level in Australia:

Qualification Mathematics subject Required result
IB Mathematics** SL or HL, or Mathematics: Applications and Interpretations HL, or Mathematics: Analysis and Approaches SL or HL SL 5 or HL 4
GCE A Level Mathematics or Further Mathematics B

**Not Mathematical Studies

If you have completed the equivalent of a minimum of one year of full-time study in a bachelor’s degree (and have not already satisfied the mathematics prerequisites through secondary school studies), you are required to have undertaken studies in mathematics in your degree that are assessed by the University to be equivalent to an acceptable mathematics unit of study.

We will consider studies in a bachelor’s degree in STEM study areas such as science and engineering and additionally in commerce/business as equivalent to the required mathematics standard.

Where you have undertaken studies in other areas but have completed mathematics specific subjects, we will assess this as a potential means of meeting our mathematics prerequisites.

If you have completed an AQF Diploma or equivalent (and have not already satisfied the mathematics prerequisites through secondary school studies), you are required to have undertaken studies in mathematics in your completed diploma that are assessed by the University to be equivalent to an acceptable mathematics unit of study.

We will consider studies in STEM study areas such as science and engineering and additionally in commerce/business as equivalent to the required mathematics standard.

Where you have undertaken studies in other areas but have completed mathematics specific subjects, we will assess this as a potential means of meeting our mathematics prerequisites.

Domestic students

If you have completed an approved university preparation program, you will need to have undertaken specific studies in mathematics, see Mature-age Entry Scheme 2020 (pdf, 3.7MB).

International students

If you are completing the University of Sydney Foundation Program, you will need to have undertaken the relevant studies in mathematics as part of your foundation program.

Degrees with mathematics course prerequisites

Options if you don't meet the mathematics prerequisites

If you do not meet the mathematics prerequisites, there are other options.

You can complete the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) for mathematics and the post-MOOC exam, or you can apply for and enrol in a course that doesn’t have a mathematics prerequisite, complete the required studies in mathematics and then apply to transfer to your initial course choice.

To meet the requirements in this way, you must complete the Introduction to Calculus MOOC and post-MOOC examination with the required grades.

The MOOC is not intended for students who have not undertaken any studies in mathematics and is not a substitute to studying the required mathematics subjects in high school.

The post-MOOC examination will be available to register* for and complete only immediately prior to the University intake you are eligible to commence your university course. 

Students who successfully complete both the MOOC and post-MOOC examination will be eligible for an offer of admission to courses with mathematics prerequisites if they also meet the ATAR (or equivalent) and other applicable admission criteria.

Some courses have limited places and/or may not be available each intake, check the course details.

*To be eligible to register for the post-MOOC exam, you must have an active UAC or direct applicant number.

Students can apply for and enrol in a course that does not have mathematics prerequisites and then apply to transfer to a course that does require the prerequisites after completing the required studies in mathematics (as specified by the University)*.

Where you already have the required ATAR or equivalent for your course which has mathematics prerequisites, you would only be required to complete one semester of study that includes the required studies in mathematics (see table below).

If you do not have the ATAR (or equivalent) for your chosen course which has mathematics course prerequisites, you would be required to successfully complete one year of full-time study in a bachelor’s degree that includes the required studies in mathematics. Admission is based on the better of a student’s ATAR (or equivalent) or performance in at least one year of higher education study or a bachelor’s degree; and completion of an accepted mathematics subject at university. Refer to the information above on requirements when applying with studies in a bachelor’s degree.

* Transfers are not permitted to the following courses: B Arts/D Medicine, B Economics (Sciences Po Dual Degree), B Science/D Dental Medicine, B Science/D Medicine.

Accepted mathematics units of study

The following units of study (subjects) are accepted by the University as equivalent to the required mathematics standard if applying with studies in a bachelor’s degree or completed AQF Diploma.

Unit of study (subject) For what course?
MATH1111 Introduction to Calculus* All award courses subject to mathematics course prerequisites
ECON1003 Quantitative Methods in Economics
  • Bachelor of Economics
  • Bachelor of Economics/Bachelor of Advanced Studies
ENVX1002 Introduction to Statistical Methods
  • Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Agriculture)
  • Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Animal and Veterinary Bioscience)
  • Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Food and Agribusiness)
  • Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Taronga Wildlife Conservation)
Equivalent unit (subject) from another university As assessed by the University

*MATH1111 represents the minimum standard for an acceptable mathematics subject that meets the mathematics course prerequisites. Mathematics subjects taken at a higher level will also be considered to meet the prerequisites.

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