Information for parents in Australia
Do you feel equipped to support your child in making important decisions about their future? If not, you’re not alone! This page contains all the information you need to help your child make the best decision for their life after secondary school.
How can I help?
As a parent or guardian, you play a vital role in helping your child understand their options and make choices about their future. Here are some ways you can help:
Talk it through
Start talking about the future with your child as early as possible. A good place to start is the subjects they enjoy at school – these are probably the ones they will enjoy at university.
Visit universities with your child, look at their websites and gather as much information as you can. Find out about scholarships and entry schemes that can help with funding or entry into university (see more information below).
Remember, it's their decision!
Be there for support, but let your child take responsibility for exploring their options. Reassure them that they can change their mind and it’s not the end of the world if they don’t know what they want to do straight away.
Why is tertiary study important?
Education pays off
University study provides long-term advantages. Education not only improves your child’s chances of gaining long-term employment, it also means they are likely to earn more money than those who don’t go on to further study after secondary school.
Landing that dream job
Not all careers require a tertiary education, but many do. University graduates have a wider range of job opportunities available to them and generally have more opportunities for promotion once employed.
Of course, tertiary study teaches students specific skills related to their area of study, but it also builds the personal skills we know are highly valued by employers – communication, teamwork, problem solving, initiative, planning and organisation, self-management and the use of technology.
What are the requirements for entry?
To receive an offer for a University of Melbourne course, your child must:
- Achieve an ATAR above the Clearly-in Rank for their chosen course
- Have completed the applicable prerequisite subjects during Years 11 and 12
Fine Arts and Music applicants must also pass an interview or audition.
Are there other entry pathways or special entry schemes?
Access Melbourne is the University of Melbourne's special entry scheme for domestic students. It can help your child get a place at Melbourne, even if their ATAR is below the Clearly-in Rank, by letting them explain any ongoing circumstances that have affected their education such as financial disadvantage, living in a rural or isolated area, a disability or medical condition or other ongoing difficult circumstances. Some students may even be eligible for guaranteed entry into one of our courses, or a scholarship.
Information and eligibility criteria can be found on the Access Melbourne page
Year 11/12 Special Consideration
If your child has experienced circumstances during Year 11 or 12 that have had an adverse impact on their performance, they can also apply for Year 11/12 Special Consideration.
See Year 11/12 Special Consideration for more information.
Do you offer any programs for high-achieving students?
Yes, the University recognises outstanding achievement in academic, sporting and artistic endeavours and encourages high achievers through a number of entry pathways and other programs:
Chancellor’s Scholars Program
The University’s prestigious Chancellor’s Scholars Program gives very high-achieving students a guaranteed place in a graduate program at Melbourne, and a range of other exciting benefits.
The program supports students’ intellectual and personal growth through a range of encounters – with fellow students, with academic mentors from across the University, and via internships, special projects and overseas study.
See Chancellor’s Scholars Program for more information.
Graduate course guarantees
Wouldn’t it be great if your child could begin their undergraduate degree at Melbourne with the security of knowing a graduate place is reserved for them when they finish? The University offers guaranteed entry to a number of our graduate courses.
Find out more about guaranteed entry into our graduate degrees here.
Elite Athletes and Artistic Performers Entry Scheme
If your child is recognised as an elite athlete or performing artist, they may be eligible for our Elite Athletes and Artistic Performers Entry Scheme. We know this level of commitment can impact on your child’s studies, so we’ve developed this scheme to encourage international, national and state representation in sports and artistic performance.
See Elite Athletes and Artistic Performance Entry Scheme for more information.
University of Melbourne Extension Program
The University of Melbourne Extension Program provides an opportunity for your child to study a university subject during Year 12. The program provides an academic challenge and allows students to explore a particular subject area at a more advanced level, and an opportunity to receive a contribution to their final ATAR.
See University of Melbourne Extension Program for more information.
What is the application process?
All domestic students applying for undergraduate study at the University apply in their final year of high school via the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC). Your child can list up to 12 course preferences, and will receive an offer for the highest-ranked course in their list for which they are eligible.
For more information, please see the VTAC website
How much does university cost?
All domestic undergraduate students enrol in a Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP), subsidised by the Australian Government. Students pay a student contribution amount, with the amount set each year by the Australian Government and determined by the subjects in which they enrol. The exact cost of the student contribution depends on the subjects they take, not the course they are studying. The student contribution amount can be paid in full at the time of enrolment, or deferred until your child is in full-time employment via an interest-free HECS-HELP loan from the government.
For more information, please see our fees page.
There are other fees and costs associated with studying at university that you also need to consider, such as textbooks and other equipment, and accommodation and other living costs, particularly if your child is moving out of home to study.
Are scholarships available?
Yes! The Melbourne Scholarships Program is one of the most generous and comprehensive in Australia. The program rewards outstanding academic achievement and also increases access to students who might otherwise be excluded by socioeconomic, cultural, geographic and other disadvantages.
For more information, please see our scholarships page.
What accommodation options are available?
If your child is planning on moving out of home to study at the University, it’s important to start thinking about accommodation options as early as possible.
There are a number of options available, including:
- Residential colleges: There are 11 colleges for undergraduate students, located on and around the Parkville campus
- Student apartments: These are often designed specifically for students and are generally self-contained, with communal space available
- Share housing: Your child could move into an established share house, or set one up with some friends
The University’s Student Housing Service offers extensive information and advice to assist students in finding appropriate housing.
What can Melbourne offer my child?
The University of Melbourne can offer your child:
- An outstanding reputation within Australia and worldwide
- A world-class education that will equip them to become a leader in their chosen field
- Unprecedented career options on completion of their studies
- Flexibility to follow a particular career path from day one, with the option to explore other exciting possibilities along the way
- Generous scholarships
- Special opportunities for high-achieving students, such as the Melbourne Chancellor’s Scholarship
- Opportunities to study overseas at one of our prestigious international partner institutions
- Fascinating and interactive classes taught by some of the world's most respected educators, scholars and researchers
- A friendly and inclusive campus environment just five minutes from the city centre
- A comprehensive range of free student services, including academic assistance and a dedicated Careers and Employment unit.
Want to know more?
We’re happy to answer any other questions you might have.
You are also welcome to attend one of the events we hold for prospective students and their families.
View our Future Students Events Calendar here.
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