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University Preparation Courses

University Preparation courses. Open to everyone.

Prepare for University the smart way with University Preparation courses at the University of Sydney.

University Preparation Courses (also known as Mature Age Preparation, University Pathway, or Degree Pathway courses) are the key to Mature Age entry at the University of Sydney. The Mature Age Entry Scheme is an avenue for entry into the University of Sydney for people of at least 21 years of age (in March of the year in which they intend to apply) who would not normally qualify for admission. By completing the required preparation course you will gain the ‘qualification’ with which you are able to apply for Mature Age entry, provided you do not already hold ‘qualifications’ that entitle you to be considered for standard admission. Note that age alone will not qualify you for Mature Age entry, and that the value, for admission purposes, of your existing ‘qualifications’ (if any) does not change with age.

University of Sydney’s Centre for Continuing Education (CCE) offers a range of preparation courses known as the UPC (University Preparation Course). You can apply for admission under the Mature-Age Entry Scheme if you successfully complete the approved preparation course/s for your proposed university degree course. Preparation courses are open to everyone; you don’t need any previous qualifications to enrol. Applications for mature-age entry can only be made on the basis of preparation courses completed within the past two years.

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Study for success: strategies for improving learning is the foundation study skills course designed to complement UPC subject classes. This course provides an introduction to those critical skills required to learn more effectively and enhance academic performance. All students doing a UPC subject are required to also enrol in Study for success: strategies for improving learning.

To assist with your study program, we offer all UPC students free access to the University of Sydney Fisher Library.

Confirm that the Mature Age Entry Scheme applies to you

Mature Age Entry Enquiries
  • Special Admissions Office
  • Phone: +61 2 8627 8207
You may not need Mature Age entry

Your existing school (and other) results may be sufficient to allow you to apply for standard admission now. Your results from school, TAFE and/or previous university attempts are always valid for undergraduate admission. You can contact Special Admissions for further information.

You may not qualify for Mature Age entry

You cannot use the Mature Age Entry Scheme if you already have any of the following:

  • a UAI/ATAR score of 70.00 or more from the NSW HSC exam (or equivalent)
  • a completed TAFE (or accredited private college)* diploma (or advanced diploma)
  • a university* attendance record of one or more full-time years (or equivalent)

* contact us for confirmation or clarification

If you have achieved any of the above, the University considers you to have demonstrated an ability to undertake university level study now. The Mature Age Entry Scheme is designed to assist people who have not demonstrated that ability. You are welcome to contact the Special Admissions Office to confirm (or otherwise) that your academic history enables you to apply for standard admission and/or to discuss your admission options and pathways to enter the course/s of your choice.

Identify your course and download the brochure

Mature Age Brochure
  • Choose your university course/s - you need to identify the course (eg, Bachelor of Arts) you hope to enter at the University. Explore the Find a Course section for courses (Undergraduate/Domestic) that interest you. Make sure the attendance pattern of your chosen course suits you (almost all University of Sydney degree courses are daytime only, some are part-time daytime). Preparation courses, however, are mostly part-time.
  • Download the Mature Age Entry brochure (PDF). Go straight to page 8 of the brochure. Make sure your desired course is available under the scheme. Keep the brochure for future reference.

How do I achieve Mature Age entry?

Open your Mature Age Entry brochure on pages 4-7 and find the course/s that you wish to enter at the University of Sydney. Alongside each university course (or group of courses) you’ll find a group of preparation courses, any one of which will potentially qualify you for Mature Age admission for that university course.

Entry standards for Mature Age entry

Admission to all undergraduate courses at the University of Sydney is competitive. Since the number of places for new students each year (the quota) is exceeded many times over by the number of applicants, offers of admission go to applicants in descending order of their results until the quota is reached.

Mature Age entry scheme applicants are considered individually by the faculties to which they apply. No pre-determined levels of results (from preparation courses) are used. However, the general rule is that a university course with a high ATAR cut-off score (for school-leavers) will require a high level of achievement (in the preparation course) from Mature Age applicants. When you apply for university admission, you will be able to list up to nine course preferences. If you are applying for high-demand courses, you should consider entering a preference or two for other courses, in case you do not meet the higher-course standard.

Applying for University admission

Your enrolment into the University Preparation Program does not automatically grant you admission into an undergraduate program (bachelor degree). Your application for admission into your undergraduate program must be made directly through the Universities Admissions Centre website. For information on the application process and cut-off dates, contact UAC directly or visit the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) website. If you are currently undertaking your preparation course at this time, you apply on the basis of your expected preparation course results (like HSC students).

Information on application procedures is in the Future Students section of the University website.

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University Preparation Art History and Film Studies Course

University Preparation courses. Open to everyone. Prepare for University the smart way with University Preparation courses at the University of Sydney. Classical Antiquity through to the 21st Century. There is a strong focus on the interpretation of individual art works, including painting, sculpture, photography, film and architecture. The course introduces key concepts of the discipline of Art History and Film Studies as well as developing some of the study skills necessary for ge... [More]

Interested in this course? Please join the waiting list and we'll notify you when a new class is scheduled or if a place becomes available.

University Preparation English Literature Course

University Preparation courses. Open to everyone. Prepare for University the smart way with University Preparation courses at the University of Sydney. This course provides an introduction to English literature and film combined with intensive focus on writing techniques, and learning and research methods. The texts range from classics such as Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the novel Frankenstein and the poem The Waste Land, to the movie Rear Window and the twentieth-century novels The Great... [More]
Please note that the final examination will be held on Saturday, 11th April, 2015. All UPC students are required to make themselves available on this day.

Interested in this course? Please join the waiting list and we'll notify you when a new class is scheduled or if a place becomes available.

University Preparation Psychology Course

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Please note that the final examination will be held on Saturday, 11th April, 2015. All UPC students are required to make themselves available on this day.

Interested in this course? Please join the waiting list and we'll notify you when a new class is scheduled or if a place becomes available.

University Preparation Mathematics Course

University Preparation courses. Open to everyone. Prepare for University the smart way with University Preparation courses at the University of Sydney. This course prepares students for future study of mathematics at university level by developing an understanding and application of algebra, geometry and calculus. Students will practise effective techniques for studying mathematics as well as learning to read and write mathematics clearly and intelligibly. Students will also develop... [More]
Please note that the final examination will be held on Saturday, 11th April, 2015. All UPC students are required to make themselves available on this day.

Interested in this course? Please join the waiting list and we'll notify you when a new class is scheduled or if a place becomes available.

University Preparation Science Course

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Please note that there will be a mid-course examination on Saturday, 13th December, 2014, and a final examination on Saturday, 11th April, 2015. All UPC students are required to make themselves available on these days.

Interested in this course? Please join the waiting list and we'll notify you when a new class is scheduled or if a place becomes available.

University Preparation Philosophy Course

University Preparation courses. Open to everyone. Prepare for University the smart way with University Preparation courses at the University of Sydney. This course provides an introduction to philosophy as an academic discipline: its history, main ideas, theories, philosophers and ways of knowing. Students will have the opportunity to discuss and evaluate many of the most influential strands of philosophy, including Platonism, Hedonism and Empiricism and by engaging with the thinkin... [More]
Please note that the final examination will be held on Saturday, 11th April, 2015. All UPC students are required to make themselves available on this day.

Interested in this course? Please join the waiting list and we'll notify you when a new class is scheduled or if a place becomes available.

University Preparation Ancient History Course

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Interested in this course? Please join the waiting list and we'll notify you when a new class is scheduled or if a place becomes available.