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Admissions Policy

Section 1 - Purpose / Objectives

(1) This policy provides a clear set of principles to guide Victoria University in the admission of students to all courses of study, to ensure processes are transparent and decisions are consistent and fair.

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Section 2 - Accountability

Accountable/Responsible Officer Role
Accountable Officer Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic and Students
Responsible Officer Pro Vice-Chancellor (Students)
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Section 3 - Scope

(2) This policy applies to current and future students of the following awards;

  1. Award coursework study in higher education (HE) and vocational education (VE), both domestic and international, onshore and offshore;
  2. Postgraduate research;
  3. Apprenticeships and trade-based study; and
  4. Non-award units or courses of study including industry-based courses.
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Section 4 - Definitions

(3) Admission

(4) Authorised Agent

(5) Deferment

(6) Direct Applications

(7) Domestic Pathway

(8) General Admission Criteria

(9) Offer

(10) Selection

(11) Selection Methodology

(12) Selection Tasks

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Section 5 - Policy Statement

(13) Victoria University believes in equal access to educational opportunities by people of all backgrounds, experiences, and abilities, provided that the University has assessed the applicant as being a genuine temporary entrant in the case of international students.

(14) Victoria University actively seeks to engage with and serve the community, especially the residents of the western region of Melbourne.

(15) For these reasons, it is the University's goal, where possible, to be able to offer every applicant a place, whether in the course or program to which they apply, or in another suitable course. This may include the offer of a combined or enabling course to address particular learning needs of the student (e.g. an English language intensive course as a precursor to an award course).

(16) In order to be eligible for selection an applicant must satisfy University-wide entry requirements and course entry requirements.

(17) Satisfaction of these requirements permits an applicant to be considered for a place, it does not guarantee an offer of a place.

(18) As per the Student Retention and Success Policy and Guideline, Victoria University is committed to supporting the success of all its students and proactively working to retain and enrich their experiences during their studies.

Part A - Basis for Admission

(19) Admission offers are made to applicants who are judged to:

  1. Have the background and abilities to have a reasonable expectation of success in the course to which they are made an offer or a substitute course if appropriate and identified by the University, and;
  2. Who are likely to benefit from University study.

(20) Admission offers are made on merit based on demonstrated achievement. Victoria University assesses merit and suitability of candidates broadly, considering:

  1. Academic attainment;
  2. Professional experience and expertise;
  3. Other life experience with a demonstrable relevance to the field of study.

(21) Victoria University acknowledges that some people may have circumstances that mean that their ability to demonstrate their capacity via typical means will be limited. The University will consider admission for such people on a case by case basis, as detailed in the Admissions Procedure and varied from time to time.

(22) Victoria University uses multiple modes of entry in admitting students, including but not limited to:

  1. Direct applications;
  2. VTAC (Year 12) and interstate equivalent applications;
  3. Pathway and package models;
  4. Industry-based group entry to specific courses;
  5. Trade-based admission to apprenticeship courses.

(23) Victoria University assesses applications in the following categories:

  1. Group A - Higher Education Study: applications whose highest level of study enrolment since leaving secondary education is a higher education course.
  2. Group B – Vocational Education and Training (VET) study: Applications whose highest level of study enrolment since leaving secondary education is a VET course.
  3. Group C – Work and Life Experience: applicants who left secondary education more than two years previously (i.e. who are not classified as recent secondary education applicants) and have not undertaken VET or higher education study since then.
  4. Group D – Recent Secondary Education: Applicants whose admission is based mostly on secondary education undertaken at school, TAFE or other VET or higher education provider (Australian or overseas equivalent) that was (or will be) completed either in the current year or within the previous two years.

(24) Victoria University acknowledges the importance of recognising an applicant's prior learning and study wherever possible and appropriate. VU will:

  1. Provide Advanced Standing to applicants in line with the principles of the AQF Qualifications Pathways Policy; and
  2. Provide clear, transparent, consistent and timely advice to applicants, and communicates decisions in a transparent and timely manner.

(25) Victoria University will not offer places in specific courses in excess of what the University reasonably believes it can service.

  1. In particular, applicants for higher degree by research places will be assessed for suitability against the available pool of expert supervisors to ensure that the University can properly acquit its responsibility to the applicant.

(26) In conjunction with Moondani Balluk, Victoria University will give specific consideration to recruitment, admission, participation, and completion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Part B - General requirements for admission

(27) Victoria University reserves the right to not make an offer of admission to an otherwise qualified applicant, in a course which still has available space, if that applicant:

  1. Has previously been excluded from Victoria University for any reason;
  2. Is currently indebted to Victoria University;
  3. Has been excluded or had enrolment cancelled at any other Australian university;
  4. Is under 15 years of age; or
  5. Is deemed to be a non-genuine temporary entrant.

(28) In the case of an applicant with one or more of the attributes described in (14) above, the University may still choose to make an offer after consideration of all the circumstances.

(29) Victoria University requires all applicants for admission to be able to satisfactorily verify:

  1. Their identity;
  2. Their age;
  3. If under 16 years of age, their parent or guardian's consent;
  4. Their citizenship status;
  5. Their visa status if an international student;
  6. Their "genuineness" against specific risk criteria to comply with Streamlined Visa Processing Provider requirements (for international applicants);
  7. Their English language competency level; and
  8. Their educational, employment and other relevant background as relied upon in their application.

(30) Details of the methods that are accepted for verification of the items in (21) above are provided in the Admissions Procedure as varied from time to time.

(31) Victoria University will adhere to the ESOS legislative framework, including but not limited to the National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018 (National Code) and the Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS Act) in regards to Admissions.

Part C - Specific requirements for admission

(32) Victoria University will publish, for the benefit of prospective applicants, the course selection criteria to be applied in each course of study.

(33) Selection criteria for all coursework courses will be established by the College/s responsible for teaching the course, and will be applied consistently to all applications.

(34) Selection criteria for higher degrees by research will be as established under the Higher Degrees by Research Policy and its associated procedures.

(35) VU International will establish equivalence of these requirements to individual countries and/or states and will publish the entry requirements for the University's major markets online.

(36) Selection criteria will:

  1. Be congruent at all times with the requirements of the Australian Qualification Framework;
  2. Clearly identify any prior knowledge, expertise or experience that is expected of successful applicants;
  3. Not unduly restrict access to courses on grounds that are not demonstrably connected with a person's capacity to successfully undertake the course or VU's capacity to discharge its obligations in delivering it.

(37) Every course must have documented course entry requirements, selection tasks (if used) and selection methodology (where a course is competitive).

(38) Course entry requirements are approved as part of the course approvals process.

(39) Selection methodology and any selection tasks are approved by the relevant College.

(40) Amendments to course entry requirements, selection tasks (if any) or selection methodology may be made by the relevant board. Changes to these requirements cannot be made in the middle of an admissions intake for domestic students, or after an admission process has commenced for international students.

(41) All applicants must satisfy the minimum course entry requirements. Where the course is competitive, applicants may need to satisfy a standard higher than the minimum course requirement

(42) The process by which admission criteria are made and applied is detailed in the Admissions Procedure as varied from time to time.

Internal applicants

(43) Domestic students currently enrolled in a VU course at any level, may make an internal application for another VU course. International students are encouraged to contact VU International for advice on applying for other VU courses.

(44) Internal applicants must satisfy the same entry requirement as other applicants for the course. VU has discretion to give preference to an internal applicant above an external applicant, in accordance with the selection criteria for the course.

Part D - Waiver of requirements

(45) University-wide entry requirements and course entry requirements may be waived in exceptional circumstances. For further information, see the Admissions Procedure.

Part E - Delegations and responsibilities

(46) The Director, Student Administration is responsible for the co-ordination and issuing of all domestic offers for admission.

(47) The Senior Vice-President, Future Students and Planning is responsible for the co-ordination and issuing of all international offers for onshore admission.

(48) VU's offshore partners or the VU College involved is responsible for the co-ordination and issuing of all international offers for offshore admission. If the offers are made by VU partner institutions, agreed quality standards are applied.

(49) General admission criteria are approved by the Director, Student Administration.

(50) The Deans of Colleges are responsible for approving the course-specific selection criteria to be used to determining which applicants will receive offers of admission.

(51) The Dean of Graduate Research is responsible for establishing and overseeing the University-wide criteria and guidance for higher degrees by research places.

(52) Admissions determinations are made by:

  1. Admissions and Enrolments staff for the lowest ATAR to which an offer was made, or the lowest selection rank to which an offer was mad, regarding direct domestic and VTAC applicants, through applying the selection criteria;
  2. Victoria University International for onshore international applicants;
  3. Partner institutions applying agreed quality standards or the VU College involved for offshore international applicants;
  4. College-based Selection Officers for some direct and VTAC applicants, through applying the selection criteria and exercising judgement about candidates' capacity in the light of their specialised knowledge;
  5. Directors of Research within Colleges, on behalf of the Deans, for applicants for higher degree by research places; and
  6. VU College for group applications for industry tailored courses.

Conflicts of interest

(53) All staff involved in selection must disclose where there may be a conflict of interest by completing and submitting a Declaration of Potential or Actual Conflict of Interest Form to their manager.

(54) The staff member must also withdraw themselves immediately from the situation giving rise to the conflict, pending advice from the manager to whom the disclosure was made.

Part F - Reviews

(55) Applicants may seek a review of an Admission decision by the Director, Student Administration. The review is final and cannot be appealed within the university.

Part G - Readmission

(56) Students of Victoria University whose enrolment lapses may reapply for admission to their course and will be subject to the same requirements as all other applicants at the time of applying.

(57) Applicants who fail to accept their offer by enrolling by the relevant enrolment deadline may reapply for admission to the course and will be subject to the same requirements as all other applicants at the time of applying.

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Section 6 - Procedures

(58) See Admissions Procedure

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Section 7 - Guidelines

(59) Nil