Levels of study and types of degrees
Before you choose a course, it's handy to decide which level of study will suit you best.
Consider what you want to use your new qualification for.
- To start your career?
- Advance or change your career?
- Or are you exploring your passion for a particular subject?
So, what are the levels of study?
Certificate and diploma chevron_right
A certificate or diploma might be your first qualification, giving you skills and experience you can build on. These courses can also complement your existing qualifications. For example, you could add qualifications in a particular subject to a broad-based undergraduate degree.
Undergraduate or bachelor's degree chevron_right
If you're starting university study for the first time, or you're interested in exploring a new field, a bachelor's degree is for you. This level of study will suit you if you've recently completed high school, have some TAFE study or vocational training, or if you're returning to study after some time away.
Honours allows you to focus on a particular area of interest with a research project that can be integrated with your undergraduate degree. It can also be completed as a standalone course after your relevant undergraduate study.
Graduate certificate chevron_right
Graduate diploma chevron_right
This is a specialised qualification, expanding on the skills you gained through your undergraduate degree or graduate certificate. A graduate diploma can also lead to a master's degree.
Postgraduate diploma chevron_right
This qualification is ideal if you've completed your undergraduate degree and want to pursue further study in the same area.
Master's degree chevron_right
A master's degree may be comprised of different combinations of coursework, project work and research. This is a specialised qualification and can lead to career advancement, and opportunities for further study (such as a doctorate / PhD).
Higher Degree by Research chevron_right
A Higher Degree by Research, such as a research master's or doctorate, is the highest level university qualification. This is a qualification in which you conduct your own research and document your findings as a thesis or dissertation.
You might be asking...
What is an undergraduate degree? chevron_right
The term undergraduate typically refers to a student studying their for their bachelor's. For most students, the first degree you study at university will be an undergraduate degree (occasionally, if you have a high level of work experience and expertise you can go directly to a postgraduate degree without first obtaining an undergraduate qualification).
How many types of undergraduate degree are there? chevron_right
While often a bachelor's, an undergraduate degree could also be an associate degree or a diploma – often those providing a pathway to a bachelor's. Honours degrees are also considered to be undergraduate courses.
What's the difference between undergraduate and postgraduate? chevron_right
An undergraduate degree (usually a bachelor's, but occasionally an associate degree) is generally the first study you'll do at university. Whether you're coming straight from school or studying at uni for the first time after a few years in the workforce, you'll more than likely do a bachelor's. An undergraduate course gives you a broad knowledge base in your chosen subject. A postgraduate degree is for those who already hold a bachelor's or who have extensive work experience expertise in a subject. A postgraduate degree – whether a graduate certificate, diploma or master's – is more specialised than a bachelor's and typically involves more independent research.