Glossary of Terms
Academic record - An official record of all subjects and results gained from secondary, post-secondary or tertiary studies.
Additional selection criteria - These are compulsory requirements either in addition to, or instead of, the normal admission requirements which you must meet to be considered for selection into the course. Examples include interviews, portfolios, supporting statements, questionnaires and tests.
Admission - Formal entry to a course.
Admission requirements - The minimum qualifications required for you to be considered for entry to a particular course. Entry to many courses is competitive. The attainment of minimum qualifications does not guarantee you will be offered a place.
Advanced standing - Prior study or experience which has been completed and which is assessed as having some academic value to your intended course. This means that you will not have to study the units for which advanced standing has been granted.
Associate degree - An early exit point from a bachelor degree and a lower level qualification.
ATAR - Australian Tertiary Admission Rank which replaced the Universities Admission Index (UAI) in 2009.
Award - A certificate, diploma, degree, graduate certificate, or graduate diploma – awarded upon successful completion of the requirements for that specified course.
Bachelor degree - An award requiring three or four years full-time or equivalent part-time study at a university.
Bridging course - Course to enable you to achieve the required level of assumed knowledge needed for admission in a particular academic program.
Campus - Locations where specific courses are administered, and/or available for study (eg. Lismore, Coffs Harbour, Gold Coast- Beachside, Tweed Heads- Riverside and Tweed Heads- Lakeside).
Certified copy - A photocopy of an original document subsequently signed by an authorising officer stating that it is a true copy of the original.
Combined degree - A degree course combining two fields of study. A single award (testamur) is received. An example of a combined degree is Bachelor of Contemporary Music/Bachelor of Education.
Course - A collection of units constructed in an approved way to form a program of study leading to one of the awards of the university (for example, an Associate Degree or Bachelor degree).
Cut-off - The minimum selection rank required for entry to a course in a particular year. Cut-offs may vary from year to year.
Diploma - (see award)
Distance education - Previously known as external study. This study mode can be undertaken on a part time or full-time basis and teaching is delivered in a variety of written and electronic forms.
Deferment - Official permission to delay the commencement of a tertiary course.
Degree - (see award)
Double degree - An award encompassing two main fields of study. Two awards (testamurs) are received upon completion. An example of a double degree is Bachelor of Business/Bachelor of Laws.
Grade Point Average (GPA) - A statistic used to assess the success of students in their studies. An average of the student's grades in all subjects attempted in a particular course.
Graduate entry - Related to a course which is restricted to students who already hold a first bachelor level degree in a relevant or associated discipline.
Honours - A higher award completed by above average students usually involving an additional year of study to the degree program in which the student is originally enrolled (eg Bachelor of Arts with Honours).
Mode - The way in which a course is delivered to students. For example, on-campus or distance education, online, or a mixture of one or more methods. Also includes choice of fulltime or part-time study.
Non-award - The study of units that does not result in an award.
On-campus - The form of full-time or part-time study that requires attendance at a university campus. This term is used to differentiate this type of study from distance education study.
Online - Study of a unit by access wholly through the internet.
Overall Position (OP) - Is a number from 1 to 25 and is a measure of academic achievement in the Queensland Senior Certificate. It assists institutionsin Queensland to rank applicants for selection to university.
Postgraduate - A program of study undertaken by a student who already holds a university degree at Bachelor level or higher.
Post-Secondary - Studies since leaving high school. For example, TAFE study and studies with other accredited training providers.
Preferences - If your application is made through UAC or QTAC you will have the chance to list more than one course (9 through UAC, 6 through QTAC ). These are called your "preferences." The list indicates the order in which you want your preferred courses to be considered.
Prerequisites - The minimum requirement(s) an applicant must satisfy to be considered for entry to a particular course or enrolment in a particular unit. Southern Cross University does not require prerequisites for entry to most of its undergraduate coursesQTAC - Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre.
QTAC - Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre.
Recommended studies - Senior or HSC level subjects that would be beneficial for a student undertaking a particular university course.
Selection rank - A selection rank is a score out of 100 used to determine your eligibility for a place.
Sessions - The academic year for undergraduate and some postgraduate courses is divided into sessions. Session One begins mid February and runs until early June. Session Two runs from late June until mid October. Session Three runs from the start of November until mid February.
STAT - A two hour aptitude test to enable applicants to demonstrate their ability to understand and think critically about issues. Results are used for admission assessment.
Tertiary study - Study undertaken after secondary education has been completed at, for example, a university.
Tertiary preparation courses - Courses offered as a preparation for tertiary study. They are usually undertaken by students with insufficient formal entry qualifications, or who have not participated in formal education for some time.
Transcript - An academic transcript is a copy of your academic record to date. It lists the subjects you have studied and all the grades.
UAC - Universities Admissions Centre (Covers NSW & ACT).
UAI – See ATAR. The Universities Admission Index was a measure of academic achievement in the HSC that assisted institutions in NSW & the ACT to rank applicants for selection to university. It has now been replaced by the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR ). The Queensland equivalent is called the Overall Position (OP).
Undergraduate - Course of study generally undertaken by first-time university students which generally results in the awarding of an Associate Degree, Bachelor Degree, combined degree or double degree award.
University wide major - A series of units undertaken from a discipline area outside the focus of a degree.
Unit - A subject to be studied as part of a course which has its own code and name, and which may be a core (compulsory) unit, or elective (non-compulsory) unit.
Updated: 10 December 2012