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Admissions Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose / Objectives

(1) This policy:

  1. Provides a clear set of principles to guide Victoria University in the admission of students to all courses of study;
  2. Provides a statement of the relevant authorities and responsibilities
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Section 2 - Scope / Application

(2) This policy applies to:

  1. all award coursework courses of study in both higher education (HE) and vocational education (VE); both domestic and international, and onshore and offshore;
  2. the admission of postgraduate research students;
  3. the admission of apprentices to trade-based study; and
  4. the admission of students to non-award units or courses of study, including industry-based specific courses.
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Section 3 - Definitions

(3) Admission: The act of admitting an applicant into a course of the University, following a successful application and acceptance of the offer of a place in a course

(4) General admission criteria/university entry requirements: The University-wide entry requirements that applicants must satisfy to be eligible for selection to each level of course offered by the University

(5) Selection criteria/admission requirements: The requirement that an applicant must satisfy in order to be eligible for selection into a course

(6) Direct admissions: The process of admitting a student via direct application rather than via VTAC or other externally managed batch processes. Direct admissions also includes offers made by one of the University's authorised agents.

(7) Selection: Process of assessing applicants for a course and deciding which applicants can be made an offer of a place in the course

(8) Selection methodology: The methodology employed to decide whom amongst the eligible applicants will be selected to be made an offer of a place in the course for which they applied. Selection methodology is usually used in cases where a course is competitive (more applications than places available) and applicants are ranked, selection methodology includes ranking methodology.

(9) Selection tasks: Activities an applicant must undertake as part of the selection process, such as providing a folio, attending an interview or completing and submitting a supplementary form. These tasks need to be met in order to be eligible for an offer into a course.

(10) Offer: A document stating what course the University is prepared to admit a person into, with any relevant conditions that must be satisfied before enrolment can take place. The University may make unconditional or conditional offers as appropriate.

(11) Deferment: An agreement to allow an applicant to defer taking up the place they have been offered until a later time.

(12) Internal application: The process by which a current student of a VU course may apply for admission into another VU course. This process differs for international students and domestic students, and is further expanded in the Admissions Procedure.

(13) Authorised agent: an organisation which has a current signed contract with the University to recruit onshore international students to the University on behalf of the University.

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Section 4 - Policy Statement

(14) 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.

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

(16) 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 preliminary course to address particular learning needs of the student (eg. an English language intensive course as a precursor to an award course).

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

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

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) applications
  3. Pathway and package models
  4. Industry-based group entry to specific courses
  5. Trade-based admission to apprenticeship courses

(23) 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.

(24) 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.

Part B - General requirements for admission

(25) 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 enrollment cancelled at any other Australian university;
  4. Is under 15 years of age; or
  5. Is deemed to be a non-genuine temporary entrant.

(26) In the case of an applicant with one or more of the attributes described in (25) above, the University may still choose to make an offer after consideration of all the circumstances.

(27) 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.

(28) Details of the methods that are accepted for verification of the items in (27) above are provided in the Admissions Procedure as varied from time to time.

Part C - Specific requirements for admission

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

(30) 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.

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

(32) 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.

(33) Selection criteria will:

  1. Be congruent at all times with the requirements of the Australian Qualifications 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.

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

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

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

(37) 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.

(38) 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

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

Internal applicants

(40) 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.

(41) 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

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

Part E - Delegations and responsibilities

(43) The Academic Registrar and Executive Director Student Services is responsible for the co-ordination and issuing of all domestic offers for admission.

(44) The Vice-President, Engagement, Marketing and International is responsible for the co-ordination and issuing of all international offers for onshore admission.

(45) 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.

(46) General admission criteria are approved by the Academic Registrar and Executive Director Student Services.

(47) 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.

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

(49) Admissions determinations are made by:

  1. Admissions and Enrolments staff for "clearly in" 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

(50) 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.

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

Part F - Appeals against admission decisions

(52) An applicant who wishes to dispute a decision not to offer a place may request to have the decision reviewed by the Dean of the relevant College, the Vice-President, Engagement, Marketing and International or the Academic Registrar as appropriate. The process for doing so is outlined in the Admissions Procedures .

(53) If the review is unsuccessful, the applicant may then appeal the admission decision on relevant grounds via the University's Student Appeals process as detailed in the Student Appeals Regulation and Procedure . The grounds for appeal are specified in those instruments.

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Section 5 - Procedures

(54) See Admissions Procedure

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Section 6 - Guidelines

(55) Nil