Bachelor of Psychological Science

Course information for - 2024 entry

Offered at 2 locations

3 years full-time or equivalent part-time
VTAC code
58.50 for Melbourne
Fees (first year)*

$9866 CSP

Start dates
Midyear (Semester 2) intake: Beginning July 2024
Applications open April 2024


In today’s fast-paced and challenging world, understanding human behaviour is a vital skill. The Bachelor of Psychological Science will help you understand human functioning in a broad range of professional settings. You can choose to undertake a minor in counselling, criminology, exercise science (exercise & nutrition), exercise science (physiology and psychology), human biology, or an Arts minor.

You will graduate from the degree having completed a sequence in psychology accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) as a Level 1 Program. This sequence will ensure graduates acquire an advanced understanding of human behaviour and mental processes, and develop employable skills that are highly regarded by industry leaders. The degree also helps you prepare for optional further postgraduate study which may lead to registration as a professional psychologist.

If you already hold a bachelor’s degree, you may be interested in our 100 credit point online APAC-accredited Level 1 program, the Graduate Diploma in Psychology.

Professional experience

Students will complete 50 -100 hours of volunteer community engagement work when they undertake the unit PSYC310 Psychological Services Experience during the third year of their course.

Community engagement

With an emphasis on work-integrated learning, there are opportunities throughout the third year of the program to undergo 50-100 hours of community engagement to develop knowledge and skills related to psychology.   

Community engagement organisations and opportunities range from Challenges Abroad Australia , Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, Islamic College of Melbourne (Wellbeing team), Switchboard Peer Counselling and Casey Youth Support.

Visit the faculty’s Work Integrated Learning (WIL) webpage to view opportunities in psychology.

Volunteer experience

During your time at ACU you’ll take part in volunteering work that has a psychological focus. This may be with organisations such as the Department of Family, Fairness and Housing, community groups or schools.

Visit the faculty’s Work Integrated Learning (WIL) webpage to view opportunities in psychology.


This course is accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) (APAC Level 1)

Please note that a minimum six-year sequence of education and training in psychology is required for an individual to become eligible for general registration as a psychologist in Australia. Students who complete this course will be eligible to apply for postgraduate studies in psychology.


After completing the course our graduates have pursued careers in diverse areas such as child welfare and protection, community work, marketing and market research, health, education, human resources. Graduates who also go onto complete further studies in psychology have registered as practicing psychologist or have pursued careers in the area of psychological research. 

Course details

Course structure

Course map

Open all

Please note: Course maps are subject to change.

Commencing Semester 1

  • Psychology Specified UnitsPSYC100Foundations of Psychology10 cp
  • Psychology Specified UnitsPSYC108Psychological Practice: Theory and Techniques10 cp
  • General Elective UnitsElective Unit 110 cp
  • Health Sciences MinorORArts Minor Minor Unit 1 (100 level)10 cp
  • Psychology Specified UnitsPSYC101Applications of Psychology10 cp
  • Psychology Specified UnitsPSYC110Research Design and Data Analysis 1

    (Inc: PSYC104)

    10 cp
  • Core Curriculum UnitsCore Curriculum Unit 1See the ACU Core Curriculum page for details10 cp
  • Health Sciences MinorORArts Minor Minor Unit 2 (100 or 200 level)10 cp

At least one of your three elective units needs to be a Psychology electiveYou can either take one Psychology Elective and two General Electives OR two Psychology Electives and one General Elective (but you cannot take three General Electives).

All units are delivered in campus attendance mode unless otherwise indicated in the map.

Prerequisites (Pre:) are other units that you must have passed before enrolling in the unit.

Incompatibles (Inc:) are units similar to this unit. If you have previously passed an Incompatible unit, you are not able to enrol in this unit. 

Commencing Semester 2

At least one of your three elective units needs to be a Psychology electiveYou can either take one Psychology Elective and two General Electives OR two Psychology Electives and one General Elective (but you cannot take three General Electives).

All units are delivered in campus attendance mode unless otherwise indicated in the map.

Prerequisites (Pre:) are other units that you must have passed before enrolling in the unit.

Incompatibles (Inc:) are units similar to this unit. If you have previously passed an Incompatible unit, you are not able to enrol in this unit. 

Graduate statement


As an ACU graduate you have personal insight founded on an understanding of who you are as a professional, a citizen and a scholar. You embrace change and growth through critical self-awareness and learning autonomy. You are empowered to seek truth and meaning, drawing on the principles of justice, equity, and the dignity of all human beings.


As an ACU graduate you value human dignity and diversity. This appreciation is founded on deep reflection, and empathy. You have experience of Indigenous Knowings and perspectives and can engage respectfully when working alongside Australia's First Peoples. You can connect with people and cultures and work with community in ways that recognise the dignity of the human person and all cultures


As an ACU graduate you utilise imagination and innovation to solve problems. You critically analyse information from a range of sources to creatively solve practical problems and use critical thinking to make decisions and advance the common good. You appreciate the role of innovation and creative thinking in developing a better future for each person and community.


As an ACU graduate you recognise your responsibility to work for social justice and a sustainable world founded on a commitment to human dignity and the common good. You lead change through respectful collaboration and effective communication of ideas to diverse peoples, groups and communities in local and global contexts. You are empowered to positively impact your profession and the community.

AQF framework

Bachelor - AQF Level 7

Additional course information


Class sizes: Your class size will depend on the unit you are studying and if that unit is taught across different degrees. The tutorial, lab and workshop class sizes are normally capped at a maximum of 30 students.

Contact hours: Most units will require you to attend three hours of classes per week in the form of a lecture, tutorial, lab or workshop on campus. Some of these may be online and you will be required to watch, read and listen to materials provided as an alternative to attending face-to-face classes.

Therefore, if you are a full-time student taking four units in a semester that will add up to 4 units by 3 hours (maximum) = 12 hours required on campus or engaging in content. As a guide, full-time students should be undertaking approximately 24 hours of study per week during semester in addition to contact hours.

Sample assessments

There are a range of different assessment tasks for different units. Each unit will have three assessments per semester. Below is an example of three assessment tasks:

Assessment 1 (20 per cent): Quiz

Assessment 2 (40 per cent): Laboratory report

Assessment 3 (40 per cent): Exam

If the unit has a final exam it is counted as part of the three assessments. Assessments have different weighting percentages towards your overall mark. A single assessment cannot be worth more than 50 per cent of your assessment total. The format of assessments is different for every unit and will be explained by your lecturer prior to the due date. 

Overseas study available

There are several international experiences for psychology students at ACU, however, these are subject to international border restrictions. You may also like to view other short-term international study experiences (STISE) that the faculty has on offer.   

Entry requirements

An applicant must also comply with the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy.

To be eligible for admission to the course, an applicant must have completed the following prerequisites at year 12, or equivalent:


English (Standard) (Band 2) or EAL (Band 3)


Units 3 and 4 – a study score of at least 30 in English (EAL) or 25 in any other English.

International applicants need to meet the English Language Proficiency requirements as defined in the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy.

Disclaimer: The course entry requirements above are for 2024 Admission. Refer to your relevant Tertiary Admission Centre website for future years' entry requirements.

View transparency admission information

Applicants with recent secondary education

You’ll need to meet the minimum entry requirements and subject prerequisites for your chosen course.  

If your school result was affected by circumstances outside of your control, such as financial hardship, illness, disability or a challenging home environment, you may qualify for an access scheme. You can apply through your TAC as part of your application process.  

Learn more about access schemes 

Applicants with vocational education and training (VET) study

You’ll need to meet the minimum entry requirements and subject prerequisites for your chosen course. 

For current year 12 students 

If you’re a current Year 12 applicant you can be given a selection rank separate from, and in addition to, your ATAR if you’ve completed a competency-based and graded AQF Certificate III or above. 

For non-school leavers 

If you’ve completed, or are completing a competency-based AQF Certificate IV or AQF diploma you will be assigned a selection rank by your local Tertiary Admission Centre (TAC). This is an entry score based on your individual qualifications and achievements. 

ACU has partnerships with TAFE and many private education providers. If you have completed a qualification with one of these partners or with ACU College, you may be eligible for guaranteed entry and/or credit into a related ACU degree. Please apply through your local TAC and then submit a credit application for your previous study.

Applicants with higher education study

You’ll need to meet the minimum entry requirements and subject prerequisites for your chosen course. 

If you have completed at least two units of AQF-recognised study at bachelor level or above, you’ll be assigned a selection rank based on your study level, duration and grade point average that will be applied during the admission process. 

If your previous study has equipped you with knowledge, skills or experiences that align with the learning outcomes of units in your new course you may be able to apply for recognition of prior learning and you may be able to complete your course sooner. 

Learn more about recognition of prior learning 

Applicants with work and life experience

You’ll need to meet the minimum entry requirements and subject prerequisites for your chosen course.

If you have no formal education qualifications you may be eligible for a selection rank based on your work, life or service experience.

  • If you’ve been in paid employment, relevant to the course you’re applying for, for a minimum of six months full-time (or equivalent), this work may be assessed for your selection rank.
  • If you’re 21 years or older you can sit the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT) through your local TAC.
  • You can apply for an ACU bridging course. Our bridging courses allow you to transition back into studying and can give you a head start on the relevant undergraduate degree.
  • If you have served in the defence force, your rank and time in service may contribute to your selection rank.

Find your path into study

English language requirements

Applicants  require an academic IELTS minimum overall score of 7.0 (with a minimum score of  7.0 in all bands), or an equivalent acceptable test score as outlined in the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy (see English Language Proficiency).

Adjustment factors

If you’re currently completing Year 12 you may be eligible for adjustment factors that can boost your rank and help you get into your desired course.

Adjustment factors may be applied to your TAC application if you study particular subjects, attend schools geographically close to our campuses or in certain regional areas, apply as an elite athlete or performer or meet certain other criteria.

Learn more about adjustment factors

Inherent requirement

There are essential components of a course or unit that demonstrate the capabilities, knowledge and skills to achieve the core learning outcomes of that course or unit. You will need to be able to meet these inherent requirements to complete your course.

Learn more about inherent requirements for your course and how they affect you


Pathways into course for current or recent Year 12 students

If you can’t meet the ATAR requirement for your choice of course and you’re currently completing Year 12 or finished Year 12 in the two years previously, we have entry programs to get you where you want to be.  

Understand your pathway options 

Pathways into course for applicants with previous study and/or life experience

Are you applying to ACU as a non-school leaver? 

By that we mean, you’re not currently completing Year 12 and haven’t completed it in the two years previously. If the answer is yes and your selection rank isn’t enough to meet the requirements for your desired course you still have a number of options to help you achieve your study goals. 

If you’re over 21, you can sit the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT) , or you can complete a diploma or bridging course relevant to your desired course. 

Explore the pathways to your future 

Further study

High-achieving graduates from this program may be eligible to apply for a level 2 APAC accredited course in psychology (honours degree in psychological science or Graduate Diploma in Psychology). Upon completion of a level 2 program of study in psychology, students will be eligible to apply for entry into a PhD in psychology. Students aiming to become a registered psychologist can apply for entry into an APAC accredited Level 3/4 postgraduate program in psychology.

Learn more about postgraduate study options at ACU or see the course information below


Course costs

Average first year fee*

$9866 CSP

All costs are calculated using current rates and are based on a full-time study load of 40 credit points (normally 4 units) per semester.

A student’s annual fee may vary in accordance with:

  • the number of units studied per semester;
  • the choice of major or specialisation; and
  • elective units.

The University reviews fees annually.

Payment options

You should be able to concentrate on getting good marks instead of worrying about how you’ll pay your fees. We have a number of options that can help you ease the financial burden, including government assistance, scholarships and income support.

Explore your options 


You could be eligible for one of the hundreds of scholarships we award each year to help students from across the university with the cost of studying, accommodation or overseas study opportunities. Some of our scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit, but these aren’t just for the academically gifted; ACU also recognises excellence in community engagement and leadership. We also offer a range of scholarships for those who may be struggling financially or who have faced other barriers to accessing education.  

Search our scholarships 

How to apply

Domestic applicants


Apply through VTAC

VTAC code 1200211301

Direct application

Apply now


Deferment is available for one year. Find out more about deferment: Deferment Information.

Staff Profile

Dr Joel Anderson

Lecturer (Psychology) – School of Behavioural and Health Sciences

Dr Joel Anderson completed his undergraduate and postgraduate studies at ACU, and after a brief stint of working abroad has returned to ACU where he is a senior lecturer in psychology. He teaches units that focus on personality, cross-cultural and social psychology. He also coordinates a unit that gives students the opportunity to undertake a 100-hour placement in the community. In this unit, students can undertake a local placement, or work on a partnership-project based in Nepal. His research interests in social psychology focus on prejudices towards sexual and gender minority groups and individuals with refugee or asylum-seeking backgrounds. He is a Member of the Australian Psychological Society.

Dr Joanne Bennett

Lecturer (Psychology) – School of Behavioural and Health Sciences

Dr Joanne Bennett is an early career researcher who finished her PhD in 2017. Her primary research interests are in cognitive neuropsychology across the lifespan, applied driving psychology and road safety. Dr Bennett’s research has focused on understanding the relationships between cognitive function and driving behaviour across the lifespan. Her research aims to use this information to determine fitness to drive, in particular for older adults and individuals with neuro-degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease. She specialises in teaching research design and statistics while enjoying the challenge of helping students understand not just the numbers, but what the numbers tell us about people.


James Carnuccio

"ACU makes studying psychology a rewarding and amazing experience. There is a true sense of community ensuring you feel like an individual that matters, not just a number. The teaching staff are caring and accommodating, ensuring the work is accessible and engaging for all students.” 

James Carnuccio
Psychological science student

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