Browse our FAQs to find information on our programs within the UNSW School of Education. This information will be useful to current students and anyone planning to apply for one of our many educational programs. If you can't find the answer you're looking for, or if you have any further enquiries, please contact the School office.


Q: Why study to become a teacher?

A: Teaching is a vocation, not just a career. If you're passionate about your subject area and enjoy sharing your knowledge with others, then you'll find teaching a rewarding experience. A liking for and ability to build rapport with children/young people is also important. In terms of financial rewards, teaching offers good starting salaries which can be found on the NSW DEC website.

Q: Are UNSW teaching qualification recognised overseas?

A: Teachers trained in Australia, and particularly NSW, are highly sought after all over the world by both English-speaking countries, such as the UK and America, and non-English-speaking countries. UNSW students have an excellent rate of employment upon graduation, and have cemented our international reputation as an exemplary teacher-training institution.

Q: Does UNSW offer preservice primary education?

A: Yes, our new Master of Teaching (Primary) program. Our preservice teacher training courses will qualify our graduates to teach in schools in Australia and overseas.

If you're already a qualified, accredited primary teacher wishing to undertake advanced study, you may be interested in our Master's in Education, Master's in Educational Leadership or Master of Philosophy.

Q: I have no existing qualifications and would like to study to become a secondary school teacher. What can I study?

A: You should apply to study in one of the four or five-year full-time dual-degree programs offered within the School of Education.
These are the Bachelor of Arts/EducationBachelor of Commerce/EducationBachelor of Design (Honours)/EducationBachelor of Economics/EducationBachelor of Fine Arts/EducationBachelor of Media Arts (Honours)/EducationBachelor of Music/Education, and Bachelor of Science/Education.

Q: I've finished my Bachelor's degree and want to teach secondary or primary-age students. What do I need to do?

A: Master of Teaching(Primary) or Master of Teaching(Secondary). Entry into this program is assessed on an individual basis only after a formal application is made to the University.

Q: What is the structure of the Master of Teaching?

A: The MTeach is a 1.5-2 year program. The first year is normally taken full time over three terms and the second, undertaken part-time while you're teaching.

Q: I'm already a teacher, how can I become qualified to teach an additional subject?

A: The Graduate Certificate in Teaching is suitable for practising secondary teachers looking to qualify to teach additional subjects or methods. Classes take place in the evenings/after school hours. However, in order to complete the program you must already be working at a school that will allow you to carry out your Advanced Professional Practice internally. It's also essential that you have already completed or are currently completing the relevant disciplinary studies.

Q: How do I apply for undergraduate study?

A: Domestic applicants applying for an undergraduate program all apply through the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC).
A: International applicants currently undertaking an Australian Year 12 qualification (either in Australia or offshore) or the IB onshore, or the NZ NCEA apply via UAC International.
A: Other international applicants apply through UNSW Apply Online.

Q: What are my options if my ATAR isn't high enough to get into my undergraduate double degree of choice?

A: You may find that enrolling in a degree that is appropriate to your desired teaching area/s (e.g. Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science) provides a good pathway to your Education program of choice. After you have completed the required minimum units of credit (UOC), and if you have a sufficiently high grade average, you may apply for an internal program transfer into one of the Education double degrees.

Q: When do UAC applications close for undergraduate entry into programs in Term1, 2019?

A: Applications for the December Round 2 and January Round 1 offers for domestic students will open in September/October 2018 and UNSW will make the majority of offers in December and January for Term 1. For international students applying directly via UNSW Apply Online, the official closing date is 30 November 2018, however late applications will be considered if there is space available.

Q: How do I apply for postgraduate coursework study?

A: All postgraduate coursework applications should be made via UNSW Apply Online. This includes all the Master of Education and Master of Educational Leadership programs.

Q: How do I apply for research-based studies?

A: All prospective applicants for research-based studies within the School of Education should first contact the School for more information to be advised on how to apply correctly. Email

Q: What is the timetabling like for preservice Education courses?

A: The method courses, which are taught by practicing teachers, will normally be scheduled between 4pm and 7pm. Other preservice education courses will generally be taught between 8am and 5pm, Monday to Friday, except for the second year Masters of Teaching classes which are run in online and intensive mode, as the students of that program are expected to be teaching full-time. See our calendar for Masters of Teaching (Primary) and Masters of Teaching (Secondary) courses.

Q: I’m halfway through my Bachelor of Arts, and have decided I want to teach. What should I do?

A: You may be able to transfer into a dual award with the Bachelor of Education (BEd). You will probably receive advanced standing for some of your discipline courses, however you will need to complete the first and second year education subjects as outlined in the study program provided to you, as they are prerequisites of the third-year courses.

Q: I’m doing a BA/BEd, and am uncertain about my course choices and degree structure. Who do I talk to?

A: For all enquiries related to the courses in your major and minor and your overall course structure and progression, please contact the UNSW Arts & Social Sciences Student Centre by phone on (0)2 9385 2289, or via the Ask a question form.

Q: Do the programs stay the same from year to year?

A: To ensure we offer the best standard of teacher training, we continuously evaluate and improve our program but there's no need to worry if this happens partway through your program. If the program has been altered to develop our pedagogy, you'll still continue along the pathway you originally enrolled in. If the program structure changes due to outside influences (e.g. a change in teacher accreditation requirements), your program will be modified so that you'll still be qualified to teach your methods upon graduation. Take a look at our program plans.

Q: What is the duration of the practical component of my Bachelor of Education degree?

A : All students must do at least 80 days of professional experience. In Year 2, students undertake 15 days of Professional Engagement as a classroom assistant in a school or educational organisation to get to know the different forms of educational provision in NSW and to understand the needs of a variety of learners. In Year 3 and 4, students normally take 65 days of Professional Experience/internship.

Q: How many hours of study per week are involved in preservice Education courses (lectures, tutorials and self study)?

A: This varies from course to course. Contact hours (i.e. lectures and tutorials) for a course usually total 36 hours. Each course also requires an average of six hours of self-directed study and assessment per week.

Q: Are there assessments for intensive courses before the start of the scheduled lectures?

A: Yes, intensive courses always require a small graded assessment task to be completed in advance to meet federal government requirements and to ensure you are appropriately prepared for the intensive nature of the course by reading and reflecting on key issues. You should check your Moodle when you enrol for assignment information as well as the course outlines.

Q: What if I am an EAL/D student and need extra help with English?

A: UNSW Arts & Social Sciences now has a Personalised English Language Enhancement Program (PELE) to help you take responsibility for your own English language enhancement. This is a free 10-week program that consists of lectures and tutorials.Check your eligibility.

The Learning Centre at UNSW also offers individual consultations, academic skills workshops, Conversation Café groups, online academic skills resources and Academic Skills Plus, a General Education course that helps students develop their academic skills and gain academic credit. Visit The Learning Centre for more details.

Q: What is the Confirmation Progress Review (CONFR)?

A: If you are a new PhD student, you will need to confirm your candidature by completing a confirmation review (CONFR). This usually happens 6 to 9 months after the census date of your first term of enrolment.

Q: What is the point of a CONFR?

A: Like the Annual Progress Review, the CONFR helps you review and measure your progress since starting your candidature, and helps you carefully plan your research for the following year.

Q: What does the CONFR process involve?

A: A formal seminar presentation where you present your research to academic staff and your colleagues, and a separate panel review meeting where you can meet with the review panel alone (i.e. without your supervisor).

Q: Why can’t I just do a CONFR in writing instead of giving a seminar presentation?

A: The CONFR presentation, as with the annual progress review, helps you to develop your presentation skills. Presentations are an important part of your research training, and the CONFR is an ideal opportunity to practise these skills. It is a positive and productive process where you can gain meaningful support and constructive feedback from academic staff and fellow students. The School of Education encourages you to use PowerPoint. Please remember to bring your presentation on a USB as connecting a laptop to the system often creates delays.

Q: What do I need to do before the CONFR?

A: You need to complete your review form, which will be emailed to you via the Annual Progress Review online system. Make sure your supervisor completes the review form and that your co-supervisor is given a chance to comment on it. This is the administrative process and does not constitute your review.

You also need to provide the following in writing for a CONFR:

  • An outline of the key milestones achieved since you started
  • An outline of key objectives and milestones for the next 12 months
  • A timeline and milestones for completion of the thesis
  • A literature review of the research area
  • A detailed research proposal including a justification of the research, an assessment of the resources required to support the research, and a statement of how the research will be conducted in accordance with the UNSW policies for intellectual property, OHS and ethics

Q: Why is there a face-to-face panel review?

A: There are a range of benefits:

  • It gives you the chance to have your research and supervision reviewed by an academic panel independent of your supervisor
  • It provides a safe environment where you can raise any issues that are holding back your progress
  • It will help you develop research goals for the following year.

Q: What are the possible outcomes of a CONFR?

A: The panel’s recommendations may be one of the following:

  • Satisfactory: the research is on track and you may re-enrol
  • Marginal: Some milestones have only been partly achieved. New milestones will need to be set and you will need to complete an interim review within the next 1 – 3 months.
  • Unsatisfactory: Your research is at risk of not being completed. With your supervisor, you need to set a plan of action and detailed milestones. An interim review should be planned for within the next 6 months.

Q: Where can I get help?

A: While your supervisor is your primary contact for any queries regarding the content of your CONFR, both the School of Education faculty office and the Graduate Research School office can provide details on CFR policy and procedures. The following resources contain useful information:

Q: How do I register my professional learning course for maintenance of accreditation purposes with NESA (formerly BOSTES)?

A: Register your attendance of any of our courses with NESA online. The School of Education then logs hours with NESA, and then the teacher must log on to their portal and complete an evaluation to receive their accreditation.

Q: I am a postgraduate student. How do I register all of my completed subjects for maintenance of accreditation purposes with NESA (formerly BOSTES)?

A: You should submit proof of enrolment and successful completion of subjects and programs on an annual basis to NESA in accordance with their UG and PG Studies Policy Document. Please read the document carefully to properly understand your responsibilities as a student.

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