Southern Cross Scholars Program

Applications are now closed for 2024. 

Group of students at the Lismore learning centre
Students at Gold Coast campus with ocean views in background

The Southern Cross Scholars program offers Year 11 & 12 students the opportunity to study a university subject while still in high school.

This free program gives you advanced academic skills to help you blitz your final years in high school and offers you the choice of a subject of interest. You also get the chance to experience university life at one of our campuses or online.

Successful completion of the program puts you in the running for a generous scholarship that can make your uni goals that much sweeter.

Applications are now closed for 2024.

Speak with our team

Prepare for University

Prepare for University

Experience university while you’re still at school - you’ll be ahead of the game and prepared for your first year at uni.

Credit towards a degree

The units offered in the free Scholars program can count towards a Southern Cross degree – a head start and a discount on your university degree.

Scholarship opportunity

When you successfully complete the Scholars program, you’ll be eligible for one of 35 generous undergraduate scholarships worth up to $20,000.

Set yourself apart

Being a Southern Cross Scholar sets you apart – it demonstrates self-motivation, capability and looks great on your CV or university application.

Enhance school performance

Gain new academic skills and an understanding of university-level skills that can help you smash it in Year 12.

Invitation to VIP programs

Network and get inspired at study-enhancing VIP programs as part of your Scholar experience.

Cost: Free

There is no charge for the Southern Cross Scholars program.

Speak with our team

Students must meet the following requirements:

  • Speak English as their first language or satisfy SCU’s English Language Requirements
  • Be enrolled in Year 11 & 12 at any Australian high school, including the School of Distance Education.
  • Be achieving a minimum B grade average.
  • Be capable of undertaking university-level study on top of their school workload.
  • Have written permission from their parent/ guardian to undertake Scholar’s study.
  • Have the approval of their school to participate in the Scholars program.
These requirements relate to domestic students (i.e. Australian citizens; New Zealand citizens; holders of a permanent residency visa; or holders of a permanent humanitarian visa) enrolled in a registered state school, independent school or school of distance education.

Units of study




Unit Aim


A Culture of Enquiry

Coffs Harbour, Gold Coast, Lismore, Online

Available Term 1 - 2024

Term 1 runs from March - April 2024

This unit develops students’ understanding of the university culture of scholarship whilst developing their critical thinking and information literacy skills.

Students will explore the nature of knowledge, including their own biases and limitations, developing an understanding of how information can be presented and interpreted in relation to a range of real-world, contemporary issues.

Critical thinking and its application. Improve judgement making processes.
Demonstrate information literacy skills.

This unit is linked to Business Courses.

Language and Learning in Your Discipline

Coffs Harbour, Gold Coast, Lismore, Online

Closed for Term 1 2024

This unit introduces students to learning skills for university study, communication skills, and reading and writing conventions within university discipline focused study.

Students will develop understanding of, and skills in, digital literacies within SCU environment a variety of academic writing genres relevant to their discipline of study, and principles and application of academic integrity.

Learning skills for university study.
Academic writing skills.
Application of academic integrity.

This unit is linked to Education, IT, Engineering and Arts.

Nature of Science

Lismore, Online

Available Term 1 - 2024

Term 1 runs from March - April 2024

This unit introduces students to the nature of science through four core scientific disciplines: chemistry, physics, biology and geology.

Students analyse, and in some instances, solve problems in real-world contexts involving scientific observation, measurement and experimentation.

Understanding of key concepts across four scientific disciplines.
Apply analytical and problem-solving skills in defined scientific contexts.
Conduct an experiment and write an academic report.

This unit is linked to Science courses including Regenerative Agriculture.

Introduction to Science for Health Professions

Coffs Harbour, Gold Coast, Lismore, Online

Available Term 1 - 2024

Term 1 runs from March - April 2024

This unit focuses on the underlying concepts of science essential for success in health studies.

Students explore the nature of science as it relates to health and apply analytical and quantitative skills to a range of health -related contexts.

Students learn to use scientific language to communicate processes and concepts. Learning skills specific for the health sciences are developed.

Understanding of foundational scientific concepts that are essential for successful tertiary study in health.
Apply analytical and quantitative skills in health related contexts.
Use scientific language to communicate in health science.

This unit is linked to Health Sciences.


No. If you choose to study the Scholars program online, you will not be required to come on campus for any activities.

You will be invited to attend Orientation (around one week prior to commencement of Scholars), but you will have the option of participating in this online or on campus.

The number of assessments will depend on each unit, which can change from year-to-year.

We recommend that you visit the webpage for your chosen unit (linked below) and explore the Teaching and Assessment section to gain a clear understanding of the assessment expectations.

COMM1004: A Culture of Enquiry

EDUC1001: Language and Learning in your Discipline

SCIN1001: Nature of Science

HLTH1001: Introduction to Science for Health Professions

As a Southern Cross Scholars student, you will have access to a wide range of Student Support resources including study and academic support, wellbeing services, careers and employment and indigenous student support.

Please see the Services and Support webpage for more information.

Yes, you should still submit your application even if you’re unsure about your grades.

You will be required to lodge an application through SCU directly via the SCU Scholar’s website.

The initial application form is straightforward and should take at most 15 minutes to complete.

From there, we will send declaration forms that you will need to get signed by your parents/carer and a letter of recommendation from your school Principal.

The Scholars Program is fee-free. You will not have to pay for your unit.

There are no textbook requirements, as all resources are provided to you online.

We do recommend signing-up for one of the Student Associations to get the most out of your university experience, though this is not compulsory.

You will attend:

  • One 2hr tutorial per week (either online or on-campus depending on your enrolment preference)
  • One 1hr online workshop per week

There is one interactive module you will work through each week in preparation for your tutorials.