Academic merit

UNSW undergraduate student with arms raised

Getting offered a place at UNSW is competitive and entry into our undergraduate degrees is based on academic merit.

Academic merit is generally assessed by your performance in one of the following qualifications:

  •  Australian or New Zealand Secondary Studies (HSC, VCE, IB etc)
  •  equivalent overseas qualification
  •  previous University or TAFE study

Your pathway to UNSW

We undertand that not everyone’s situation is the same. To find out what you need to do to apply for a place at UNSW click on the description from the following list that matches your situation. And of course, you can always contact us if you need more information:

How to apply

Adjustment factors

Adjustment factors, commonly known as bonus points, can help you get into the degree of your choice by increasing your selection rank. They are not applicable to all of our degrees and the application process can vary, so please read the information carefully - we don't want you missing out!

HSC plus

Get a boost with HSC Plus. If you are an Australian Citizen or Permanent Resident and you did well in secondary subjects that are relevant to the degree you want to study, you may be eligible for HSC Plus adjustment factors.

HSC Plus adjustment points are automatically added to your admission rank, so you don’t have to apply separately.

Please visit the HSC Plus website to find out if HSC Plus adjustment factors can give you a boost.

Elite Athletes, Performers and Leaders (EAPL) program

If you have excelled in leadership, performing arts, academic achievement or sports on a national or international level, you may be eligible for the EAPL Program.

Applicants can receive a maximum of five points for entry to their preferred UNSW undergraduate degree. The EAPL Program also provides support to elite athletes to help integrate academic life with external pursuits by offering enrolment flexibility, study options and leave of absence for travel commitments.

Please visit the Elite Athletes, Performers and Leaders program page, for information on how to apply, application opening/closing dates, included/omitted degrees and more.

Access scheme

UNSW is committed to the goals of equal opportunity and affirmative action in education.

The ACCESS Scheme (established in 1987) is part of this commitment and is provided for students new to higher education who have experienced long-term educational disadvantage.

The ACCESS Scheme allows UNSW to take the circumstances of individual applicants into account when allocating places in undergraduate programs.

Please visit the ACCESS scheme website to find out more.

Indigenous students

Nura Gili provides support and information for future and current Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at UNSW.

Staff are available to assist students with academic and administrative issues, housing and scholarships and pastoral support. The unit also manages the Indigenous Tutorial Assistance Scheme (ITAS) and facilitates programs to recruit and support Indigenous students at UNSW at all levels of study. They also organise a number of popular pathways programs such as the UNSW Indigenous Winter School for students in Years 10, 11 and 12.

Please visit the Nura Gili website to find out more. 

Rural students

Please visit the Services for Rural Students page to find out more about the range of options available to rural students to assist in the transition to University life.