Bachelor of Science
- CRICOS Code: 002153M
- VTAC Code: 3800538271
- International VTAC Code: 3800538273
What will I study?
Science at Melbourne maintains the highest standard and quality of teaching and research in Australia, attracting the highest calibre of students.
The Bachelor of Science (BSc) is truly yours to customise. Its flexibility and breadth mean that if you already know what you want to study, you can start shaping your career today. If you're not sure and have interests in many areas of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics, you can leave your options open during your first year while you explore.
Whether you already have your dream career in sight or are still searching, we know that planning your degree can feel both exciting and a little overwhelming. We'll work with you throughout your studies to make sure you're on the right track.
The Bachelor of Science requires the successful completion of 24 subjects (300 points), including a major. Most students study eight subjects each year (usually four subjects in each semester) for three years full-time. The 24 subjects must comprise:
- 18 core science subjects (225 points) made up of At least 5 subjects (62.5 points) at level 1 (usually first year), at least 5 subjects (62.5 points) at level 2 (usually second year) and 6 subjects (75 points) at level 3 (usually third year) which includes 4 subjects of your chosen science major.
- 4-6 breadth subjects (50-75 points) With at least 1 subject at both level 2 and level 3.
- And up to 2 elective subjects (25 points) either science subjects or breadth subjects at level 1, 2 or 3.
Your major is your chosen specialisation that you'll focus on throughout your degree. In most cases you'll be able to try a few different study areas before deciding on your major(s) in third year. In your final year you will usually take four subjects in a particular study area which are quite focused and specialised. These subjects are the culmination of your major.
Your breadth studies
Breadth is a unique feature of the Melbourne Model. It gives you the chance to explore subjects outside of science, developing new perspectives and learning to collaborate with others who have different strengths and interests — just as you will in your future career.
Some students use breadth to explore creative interests or topics they have always been curious about. Others use breadth to improve their career prospects by complementing their major with a language, communication skills or business expertise. Many discover new passions through breadth and some even change their career plans!
'Breadth tracks' (groups of breadth subjects in the same sort of study area taken throughout your degree) may even qualify you for graduate study in a field that's very different to your major.
Explore this course
Explore the subjects you could choose as part of this degree.
Your major is your chosen specialisation. You’ll develop a deep understanding of your major study area from first to third year. In most degrees, you won’t need to select your major on day one. In first year you’ll be able to explore a range of subject areas you’re interested in, so by the time it comes to choosing your major, you’ll be well informed. All the while, you’ll also be studying an exciting selection of subjects from both inside and outside your discipline, gaining a breadth of knowledge that will set you apart.
Explore the majors available in this degree below.
- Agricultural Science
The major in Agricultural Science prepares people for careers in agriculture including in agribusinesses, research and development organisations, environmental and business consulting firms, and government and policy agencies. Agricultural Science is the study of the science and management required for sustainable production of food and fibre. Basic sciences underpin this major, and are integrated to address complex problems through a systems analysis approach. The major includes crop and livestock systems, and students should also develop knowledge of economics, business, social sciences and natural resources within their breadth studies. The major is a direct pathway into the Master of Agricultural Science.
- Animal Health and Disease
Animal Health and Disease
The Animal Health and Disease major will provide a springboard for students wishing to pursue careers or research in the animal health and production industries, as well as for students wishing to progress to the graduate entry professional veterinary program (Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, DVM) at the University of Melbourne. Graduates of this major will develop understandings of the determinants of health in populations of domestic animals and in particular the impact of welfare, housing, nutrition and infectious agents on domestic animal health. This major will integrate knowledge from a range of disciplines including veterinary anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, nutrition, microbiology and pathology as they apply to the health of domestic animals.
Students undertaking the Veterinary Bioscience (pre DVM) specialisation will develop skills in clinical investigation and problem solving, through an integrated systems-based approach to organ structure and function that will be the foundation for their studies in the graduate professional entry DVM program. Students undertaking the Animal Disease Biotechnology specialisation will develop an understanding of the role of animal health in maintaining the health of human populations, at the same time developing skills in laboratory techniques important in the diagnosis and surveillance of disease in domestic animal populations. Students will gain experience that prepares them for the workplace by participating in laboratory activities and also possibly by industry placements.
- Animal Science and Management
Animal Science and Management
The major in Animal Science and Management replaces the existing BS (Hons) Animal Science and Management offered by the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences. The aims of the major are to develop an understanding of the biology of domestic and captive animals, their care, management and use as a resource for food, fibre, recreation and companionship. To develop an in-depth knowledge of the biology of animals, the complexities of the ethical and moral issues encompassing care, management and use as a resource will be examined in light of advances in human endeavour. The major will allow a degree of specialisation based around analysis of animal systems management of a chosen species or classification of animals. Greater knowledge, if so desired, of economic, business, communications or natural resource management relevant to, and strengthening the core studies in Animal Science and Management can be developed through clear pathways within the breadth component of the Melbourne model. Graduates from the new programme will be able to enter careers in the public or private sectors related to a wide range of animal production, environmental, biomedical and service industries, and community organisations concerned with public good, or continue into postgraduate programmes of study at masters or research higher degree.
- Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology are key biological science disciplines. The knowledge and techniques of the disciplines are applied in many biological fields and have fuelled rapid advances in medical research and biotechnology. This major will provide the springboard for students to enter careers including medical research, biotechnology, agricultural and medical support industries, education etc. This major will develop knowledge in key basic biological processes as well as more specialized areas of molecular science. In addition, an emphasis is placed on developing a foundation in practical skills required for a career as a laboratory scientist. The major will also develop skills in communication, team-work and research essential in the modern scientific workplace.
- Bioengineering Systems
Students who have completed the Bioengineering Systems major will be able to rigorously integrate the fundamental mathematics of systems modelling with the fundamental sciences of biology, chemistry and physics in the formulation and solution of problems involving biomedical systems. More specifically, core skills and knowledge that will be developed include: fundamental scientific comprehension that will lead to accurate mathematical modelling of biological and engineering systems, analytical and abstract thinking, problem-solving and design skills, ability to carry out laboratory experiments to confirm possible solutions to complex problems. At all levels of this major, we will ensure the development of excellent communication skills that will enable our graduates to deliver complex scientific information in a clear and concise fashion. The Bioengineering Systems major will open up pathways for students leading to accredited professional or scientific research careers in biomedical engineering (through further study in the Masters in Engineering or PhD programs respectively), applied mathematics, applied science, teaching, management and finance.
Biotechnology is the use of biological knowledge to develop new processes and products for use in industry, health, agribusiness and other areas of human technology. Biotechnology advances can be based on knowledge from biological sciences, chemical sciences, physical sciences or engineering. Because of this, the major is not tied to a particular discipline area. The binding concept is that of developing technology from basic discipline knowledge in at least one area. For example, agricultural biotechnology will normally involve some core crop and food technology, molecular biotechnology will normally involve some core molecular biology and chemical biotechnology will normally involve some core chemistry together with some biological science.
The Biotechnology major has a number of streams and integrates knowledge from a variety of scientific disciplines. Students will complete a sequence of specialist subjects in a discipline area and by the end of the major should have developed a detailed knowledge of that area and an appreciation of its biotechnological applications. The major provides students with opportunities to gain practical experience in the laboratory and to develop skills in problem-solving and the analysis, interpretation and communication of scientific data that will prepare them for the workplace.
Please note that completion of the Biotechnology major does not necessarily meet the entry requirements of the Master of Biotechnology. For details of specific subject requirements for that degree, please refer to the Handbook page for the Master of Biotechnology.
- Cell and Developmental Biology
Cell and Developmental Biology
This major provides students with broad understanding of cell structure and function and explores genetic, molecular and cellular mechanisms of development in a range of organisms and experimental models. It highlights the research methodologies used and how knowledge is applied to improve the human condition. Students should develop specialist skills in understanding cellular processes and experimental approaches used to investigate them. They should also develop generic skills in integrating information from diverse fields, communication and presentation of information, teamwork and independent learning that will equip them for a range of careers in research, biotechnology, government agencies, agriculture, medico-legal and journalism.
- Chemical Systems
Students who have undertaken the Chemical Systems major will be able to rigorously integrate fundamental science in chemical engineering to provide accurate information and optimum solutions to practical problems involving basic chemical processing systems. More specifically, core skills and knowledge that will be developed include: fundamental scientific comprehension that will lead to accurate computer modelling of process systems, analytical and abstract thinking, problem-solving and design skills, ability to carry out laboratory experiments to eliminate or confirm possible solutions to complex problems. In all levels of this major, we will ensure the development of excellent communication skills that will enable our graduates to deliver complex scientific information in a clear and concise fashion.
The Chemical Systems major provides a direct pathway for admission to Masters in Engineering programs in chemical and biochemical engineering. These Masters programs will be accredited and recognized internationally as professional engineering degrees. Students graduating from these programs will be ready to work in a range of chemical and biochemical engineering industries anywhere in the world.
Chemistry major students will develop the capacity to view the world from a molecular perspective and to solve complex problems that span the breadth of chemistry and other sciences. Pathways for chemistry majors will include careers in research (through further study including MSc and PhD programs in chemistry and allied areas), teaching, government and professional positions.
- Civil Systems
Students who have undertaken the Civil Systems major will be able to rigorously integrate fundamental science to provide accurate information and optimum solutions to practical problems involving civil infrastructure. More specifically, core skills and knowledge that will be developed include: fundamental scientific comprehension that will lead to accurate computer modelling of civil systems, analytical and abstract thinking, problem-solving and design skills, ability to carry out laboratory experiments to eliminate or confirm possible solutions to complex problems. In all levels of this major, we will ensure the development of excellent communication skills that will enable our graduates to deliver complex scientific information in a clear and concise fashion.
The Civil Systems major will provide various pathways for students. These include accredited professional or scientific research careers in civil engineering through further study in the Masters in Engineering (ME) or PhD programs. Professional masters courses in other disciplines such as education, law, or business will be available. Students may also choose to enter the workforce at the completion of their undergraduate degree with employers who value the range of scientific, technical and problem solving skills graduates will have developed.
- Climate and Weather
Climate and Weather
The Climate and Weather major will provide the springboard for students entering careers or research any area in which an understanding of how the fluid domains of the planet function is required. This includes fundamental research into climate modelling and prediction, the role of principal wind and ocean current systems, and how these interact with the land surface to influence weather, climate and hence the environment. Careers outside research may include government organisations such as the Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO, or areas in the aerospace industry and management. Graduates will be prepared for these pathways by developing skills in acquiring and interpreting atmospheric and oceanic information, which are crucial to being prepared to make contributions in any research or industry setting.
This major will integrate knowledge from a range of disciplines from field-based studies to more theoretical aspects atmospheric dynamics and climate forcing. Students will complete a sequence of specialist subjects as well as integrated subjects in which they develop an understanding of how these may be applied to solve outstanding questions about the Earth's atmosphere, oceans and land surfaces influence changes to our environment. Students will gain experience preparing them for the workplace by participating in hands-on project work that requires careful time management and the clear communication of results.
- Computational Biology
This is an interdisciplinary major that provides education in using computational and quantitative methods to address scientific questions at the interface of the life, mathematical, and computational sciences. There is great demand for computational and mathematical biologists in academia, industry, and government, where they are investigating problems as diverse as identifying the genetic basis of disease, to predicting how ecological systems will respond to climate change.
In addition to completing core units that provide essential education in computational biology, students have the opportunity to specialise in one of computational biology’s core disciplines – the life sciences, mathematics and statistics, or computer science.
The major prepares students for graduate studies in either computational biology or traditional disciplines, as well as for entry into the job market.
- Computing and Software Systems
Computing and Software Systems
The Computing and Software Systems major will focus on providing students with considerable technical expertise in computer science and software engineering, including exposure to a variety of programming paradigms, an understanding of the systematic processes underpinning the software development lifecycle, and an appreciation of advanced topics in computing. This major will be a natural pathway to the Master of Engineering (Software), the Master of Science (Computer Science), and the Master of Data Science. Graduates with a management orientation will also consider the Master of Information Systems (MIS).
- Data Science
The major in Data Science has an emphasis on statistics and computer science. It provides a strong foundation in the statistical aspects of data analysis (data collection, data mining, modelling and inference), as well as the principles of computer science (algorithms, data structures, data management and machine learning).The major is designed to give students an intellectual understanding of how to integrate and apply statistical and computing principles to solve large scale, real-world data science problems. It is suitable for students interested in a career in government or industry or who wish to pursue specialised graduate study.
- Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
The Ecology and Evolutionary Biology major will provide the springboard for students entering careers or research in the following areas: Ecology, Conservation Biology, Animal Behaviour, Evolutionary Biology, Systematic and Biodiversity, Environmental Consulting. Graduates will be prepared for these pathways by developing skills in survey, experimentation and modelling of ecological and evolutionary processes, which are crucial to being prepared to make contributions in research, education or in consulting roles in natural resources management and environmental consulting industries.
This major will integrate knowledge from a range of disciplines from genetics through organismal biology to ecosystem science, by enabling students to complete a sequence of specialist subjects in each, as well as integrated subjects in which the students develop an understanding of the application of ecological methods to solving current problems in evolution, ecology and biodiversity. Students will gain experience preparing them for the workplace by participating in group research projects and working groups.
- Ecosystem Science
The Ecosystem Science major focuses on the science and technologies associated with the function and management of ecosystems, via two specialisations in urban ecosystems and forest ecosystems. The major integrates knowledge from a range of disciplines including plant sciences, soil science, hydrology, ecology, design, engineering and the social sciences, by enabling students to complete a sequence of subjects in each specialisation. Students will also complete an integrated capstone subject in which they develop skills in site analysis, the collection, integration and analysis of data, and the evaluation and presentation of management plans. Students will gain to experience prepare them for the workplace by participating in group research projects and working groups.
- Electrical Systems
Completing the Electrical Systems major will enable students to rigorously integrate the mathematics of signals, systems and information with the science of electrical phenomena in the formulation and solution of problems in areas such as telecommunications, monitoring and automation, energy distribution, and digital computing. We aim to develop: scientific understanding of electrical phenomena as a basis for mathematical modelling and abstraction in analysis and design; problem-solving and design skills; the ability to construct simulations and laboratory experiments; and good communication skills. The major opens pathways that lead to accredited professional careers in electrical engineering (through the Masters of Engineering), as well as careers in applied mathematics, applied science, teaching, management and finance.
- Environmental Engineering Systems
Environmental Engineering Systems
The Environmental Engineering Systems major focuses student learning on the interactions between physical materials and processes, and human and non-human organisms. Humans, through the engineering and operation of infrastructure inevitably have an impact on both the physical and biological world, which in turns feeds back to impact on humans. This major seeks to provide students with some fundamental tools from science and mathematics to be enable them to investigate, analyse, model and assess the impact arising from these interactions. Students who successfully master these tools will be in a strong position to apply them as environmentally literate scientists in industry, or to continue their study in the field of environmental engineering to become a professional engineer.
- Environmental Science
Environmental science is an integrative discipline across biological, physical and social sciences. Environmental Science major graduates will be prepared to enter careers or research in one of the following major environmental challenge areas:
- Conservation and Ecosystems
- Climate Change
- Energy (only in 2020)
- Natural Resources and Hazards
- Sustainability Science (only in 2020)
The integrative specialisations focused on environmental challenges will equip graduates with disciplinary skills and perspectives drawing upon the methodologies employed in the different biological, physical and social sciences. Graduates will develop core skills in problem framing, communication, risk assessment, environmental monitoring and environmental modelling, which are crucial to environmental assessment, consulting and management roles. These integrated subjects develop core skills of the application of scientific principles to solving current environmental problems. Students will gain experience preparing them for the workplace by participating in group-based reviews of environmental management plans and by conducting multidisciplinary practical assessments of environmental issues.
- Food Science
The Food Science major consists of an amalgamation of certain sequences of subjects to teach students basic chemistry and biology in the first year, followed by a few food science specialised subjects in the second year. This sequence of subjects will prepare students to progress toward the Level 3 subjects in the food science major and to build sound skills and knowledge in food science and food biotechnology or food science and technology. This major is designed to meet the needs of the local and international food industries for high quality food science graduates.
Students completing a Genetics major will be prepared for careers or advanced study which involve the application of fundamental genetics, genomics, evolutionary, population and ecological genetics to all areas of biology, biomedical sciences and biotechnology. Graduates will develop knowledge and skills in the theory of genetics and molecular biology, population genetics and evolution and in experimental design, data recording and analysis and scientific writing, which are essential preparation for roles in universities, research institutes, government departments, hospitals and in the biotechnology industry. This major will integrate knowledge across the breadth of genetics, including an integrated practical capstone subject in which the students develop an understanding of the application of experimental analysis to solving problems in biology. Students will gain experience preparing them for the workplace by participating in problem-solving, synthesis of information, written work, and independent as well as collaborative activities. The transferable skills developed in this major can be used in broad careers in science, including conservation, teaching, forensics, publishing, genetic counselling and research and in careers beyond the field of science.
Geography provides students with skills and conceptual frameworks needed to understand the processes that shape the world around us. Particular attention is given to understanding the spatial and temporal scales of landscapes, their history and their biota. Because Geography is a field-based discipline, the major enables students to gain hands-on research experience. Practical laboratory classes, field trips, and group project work are found at all levels of study in the major. In their third year students complete a ‘capstone’ subject dealing with the history and philosophy of Geography and may also take field based subjects involving significant, original, field-based research under the guidance of teaching staff. The major provides opportunities for students to develop critical intellectual skills, transferable professional skills, a sense of public responsibility and higher research degree capacities. Completion of the major will allow student s to enter careers or research in the following areas: research, teaching, environmental sciences, resource management, environmental consultancies, industry and government.
A Geology major will provide the springboard for students entering careers or research any area in which an understanding of how the planet functions is required. This includes fundamental research into geological processes, including palaeoclimate change, geodynamics, ore deposit formation, and the environment. Careers outside research can be wide-ranging and include the minerals exploration industry, petroleum industry, environmental consulting and management. Graduates will be prepared for these pathways by developing skills in acquiring and interpreting geological information, which are crucial to being prepared to make contributions in laboratories, in consulting roles in industry, or in policy/decision making in management.
This major will integrate knowledge from a range of disciplines from field-based studies to more theoretical aspects of rocks, minerals and their behaviour during Earth processes. Students will complete a sequence of specialist subjects as well as integrated subjects in which they develop an understanding of how these may be applied to solve outstanding questions about how the Earth works, including the competing problems of resource consumption (air, water, minerals, energy) and the environment. Students will gain experience preparing them for the workplace by participating in hands-on project work that requires careful time management and the clear communication of results.
- Human Nutrition
The major in Human Nutrition will prepare graduates for careers in a multitude of areas including the food industry, government regulatory authorities, dietetics and secondary school teaching (the latter two requiring further qualifications), as well as a pathway to higher degrees in nutrition research and many other health related fields. Basic sciences underpin this major, which connects the science of agriculture, to food production and processing, the nutrient composition of foods, the interaction of those nutrients with our biochemical and physiological make up and the impact of diet in general on health and disease at the individual and population level. The major is structured to optimise acceptance into Masters of Dietetics at universities within Australia and to qualify students for registration within the Nutrition Society of Australia’s Voluntary register of nutritionist.
- Human Structure and Function
Human Structure and Function
The Human Structure and Function Major will explain how the human body works, based on a deep understanding of the relationship between physiology and anatomy. The subjects are structured so that the anatomy (structure) and physiology (function) of the human body are taught in carefully integrated units that also introduce elements from pathology, pharmacology and zoology as relevant. It will suit students entering: medical and health related sciences, postgraduate research work in applied anatomy and physiology; teaching and research in University departments and in hospitals; with pharmaceutical companies; in media liaison, consultancies and scientific journalism.
This major provides students with a detailed understanding of Immunology, the study of our immune system. The major describes how Immunology is studied and applied to a range of areas in the biomedical sciences. The major opens up careers in infectious diseases, diagnostics, molecular biology, biotechnology, vaccinology, biosafety and regulation as well as providing an avenue towards post-graduate research into infectious agents, their genes, underlying mechanisms of infectious disease and diseases associated with the immune system. It provides a basis for further study into medicine and other paramedical disciplines.
Students intending to undertake this major should be aware that it requires successful completion of a practical-based subject in which products and reagents derived from animals are used.
- Marine Biology
A marine biology major will provide the springboard for students entering careers or research in the following areas: marine ecology, fisheries, commercial aquaculture, marine environmental monitoring and assessment, marine science education and tourism. Graduates will be prepared for these pathways by developing specialised knowledge about marine biological systems, as well as practical experience, which are crucial to being prepared to make contributions in laboratories, or in consulting roles in the marine environmental industry.
This major will integrate knowledge from a range of disciplines from the biological (botany, zoology) to physical sciences (chemistry, geography, oceanography), by enabling students to complete a sequence of specialist subjects in each, as well as integrated subjects in which the students develop an understanding of the application of ecological principles and environmental management strategies to solving current problems in marine biology. Students will gain relevant workplace training by participating in field-based and group-based research projects.
- Mathematical Physics
- Mathematics and Statistics
Mathematics and Statistics
A Mathematics and Statistics major will provide essential knowledge and transferable skills for students entering careers or research in the following areas: General sciences, Agriculture and environmental sciences, Banking, Finance and Commerce, Engineering, Government, Education, Industry, e.g. logistics/project manager, market research consultant, IT and computing, and Medicine.
NOTE - Students undertaking this major may not be concurrently admitted to the Diploma in Mathematical Sciences (D-MATHSC).
- Mechanical Systems
Students who have undertaken the Mechanical Systems major will be able to rigorously integrate fundamental science in mechanics with engineering principles to solve practical problems involving mechanical systems. Core skills and knowledge that will be developed include: fundamental scientific comprehension that will lead to accurate mathematical modelling of mechanical systems, analytical and abstract thinking, problem-solving and design skills, and the ability to carry out laboratory experiments to confirm possible solutions to complex problems. In all levels of this major, we will ensure the development of excellent communication skills that will enable our graduates to deliver complex scientific information in a clear and concise fashion.
The Mechanical Systems major will open up various pathways for students, which will include accredited professional or scientific research careers in mechanical and mechatronics engineering (through further study in the Masters in Engineering (ME) or PhD programs), teaching, management and also careers in the finance industry.
- Mechatronics Systems
This major provides a focused pathway for students wishing to build a career in the area of mechatronics, automation science and/or robotics. Students will develop strong skills in mathematical modelling of the behaviour, response, and control of mechanical systems that can perform physical tasks. This modelling is matched with sensing of the environment via electronic sensors and the instrumentation required to support them. The fundamental knowledge of the machine performance and sensing of the both the environment and performance can then be coupled using strong computer programming skills that are directed at interfacing the computers with machines.
The primary pathway this creates for students is to a Master of Engineering, although students with these skills at the completion of the BSc would also find career possibilities in a range of technical enterprises seeking strong problem-solving skills in machine-computer interaction.
- Microbiology and Immunology
Microbiology and Immunology
This major provides students with a detailed understanding of Microbiology and Immunology. It combines the study of infectious microbial agents, predominantly bacteria and viruses, with the study of the host’s immune responses, which are most often beneficial but sometimes detrimental to the host. It describes how these disciplines are studied and their application to a range of areas in the biomedical sciences. The major opens up careers in infectious disease, diagnostics, molecular biology, biotechnology, vaccinology, antimicrobial chemotherapeutics, biosafety and regulation, as well as post-graduate research into infectious agents, their genes and mechanisms of disease together with the various beneficial and harmful aspects of the immune system. It provides a basis for further study into medicine and other paramedical disciplines.
Students intending to undertake this major should be aware that it requires successful completion of a practical-based subject in which products and reagents derived from animals are used.
It is expected that students completing this Major will understand the fundamental organisational and functional principles of the nervous system: from the biology of nerve cells and neural circuits through to neural systems and ultimately to complex behaviours like thought and emotion. From the two core subjects students will gain an overview of the breath of modern neuroscience to see how a spectrum of science disciplines (such as Cell and Molecular Biology, Pharmacology, Physiology, Zoology and Anatomy) contribute to our understanding of nervous system function. This will also reveal how Neuroscience overlaps with related areas of study, such as Cognitive Science, Psychology and Medicine. Areas of study include how perceptual and motor systems are organised, the crucial role of the nervous system in the regulation of the internal environment of the body, how the nervous system develops, how it has evolved, and the effects of injury, disease and abuse.
Pathology is the scientific study of the nature of disease and its causes, processes, development, and consequences. It is a branch of science where factors which influence the shift from normal to abnormal and back again are studied at every level from the whole organism to the molecule. Therefore it overlaps with a range of biomedical disciplines such as anatomy, cell biology, biochemistry and molecular biology, microbiology and immunology and genetics. The study of Pathology will provide students with background knowledge which will enable them to ask fundamental questions about the response of tissues and cells to injury, mechanisms of healing and the outcomes which may occur when healing is unsuccessful. Students who complete a Pathology major will study findings emerging from research laboratories which are currently investigating some of the most common and intractable diseases in our community e.g. cardiovascular disease, autoimmune disease, neurodegenerative disease and cancer. A Pathology major will also give students the opportunity to experience working in a team on an investigative project and enable them to develop both verbal and written communication skills.
Subjects in a pharmacology major introduce students to the unified study of the interaction between chemical agents and living matter. A pharmacology major will teach you how drugs work, and how drugs are used as therapies and as experimental tools for investigation of important problems in biology. Pharmacology extends and complements a range of other biomedical disciplines as well as medicinal chemistry. Graduates will gain an in depth understanding of drug actions and a broad appreciation of the scientific process of knowledge acquisition and problem solving. Thus, a pharmacology major will provide the springboard for students entering careers in many areas of biomedical research and associated industries and regulatory authorities.
The Physics major will provide students with a sound basis from which to pursue a broad range of careers in areas including research and development, education, and business. Graduates will gain a deep understanding of the physical world and develop skill in analysis, problem solving and critical thinking that will enable them to adapt to a wide range of tasks in research, teaching and management.
This major will integrate knowledge principally from physics and mathematics to provide students with the necessary tools to think critically about the world around them and how it works. Students should develop a range of theoretical and experimental skills that will allow them to make critical assessments, solve problems, and develop new concepts in a broad range of work environments.
The Physiology major will teach students how the body works. Students will learn about the ways in which cells, organs and the whole body function in an integrated way. By understanding normal function, students will investigate disturbances in whole body systems such as those relating to the endocrine, cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, developmental and neural control systems. The experimental bases of physiology are emphasized and students will use contemporary techniques to examine questions in physiology. Discoveries in physiology have a broad impact upon health and medicine, environmental science, industry, nutrition, exercise and reproductive biology. Many of the discoveries from the human genome project rely on physiology to understand their impact on the human body.
- Plant Science
A Plant Science major will provide the springboard for students in entering careers or research in all fields requiring a solid understanding of plants and their environments. Graduates will develop a comprehensive integrated knowledge of the biology of plants as well as both field and laboratory skills. This major will include knowledge from all aspects of plant biology from cells to ecosystems, by enabling students to complete an integrated subject on plant evolution combination with a suite of specialist subjects in specific subdiscipline fields.
Psychology is a broad and intellectually fascinating scientific discipline focused on understanding behaviour and experience, particularly in humans. The science of psychology involves a wide range of perspectives and approaches, with psychological research findings having important applications in areas such as health, education, business, and commerce, as well as informing us about how human behaviours and motivations relate to a wide range of societal issues.
Taught at the University since the late 1800s, the Psychology undergraduate program is designed to provide students with flexibility and choice, offering a broad range of subjects that provide a thorough and extensive grounding in the discipline. Studies in psychology prepare graduates for a diverse range of careers that are based on understanding human behaviour, including health, education, industry, commerce, welfare and government.
Completion of a Psychology major accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) is the first step towards registration as a practicing psychologist, and is the recommended pathway for a career as a research psychologist.
The APAC accredited sequence consists of a prescribed minimum of 125 credit points of Psychology subjects (10 subjects, each worth 12.5 credit points), comprising 100 credit points of core psychology subjects (two at Level 1; four at Level 2; two at Level 3), and 25 credit points of Psychology subjects selected from a range of Level 3 Psychology elective subjects (two elective subjects).
The APAC accredited psychology major provides a strong grounding in basic psychological concepts and theories and their applications in the areas of biological, cognitive, developmental, social, and clinical psychology. Students will also develop skills in research methods and data analysis, and an advanced knowledge in at least one domain of psychology.
A non-APAC-accredited 50-point sequence of Level 3 subjects is also available within the Bachelor of Science.
- Spatial Systems
This major aims to provide science students with the background knowledge necessary for a career in spatial science. Spatial Systems is concerned with measurement, representation, analysis, management, retrieval and display of spatial data concerning both the Earth's physical features and the built environment. The principal disciplines embraced by Spatial Systems include the mapping sciences, land administration and management, geographic information systems, environmental visualisation, geodesy, photogrammetry, remote sensing and surveying. The major will develop a knowledge base in spatial measurement and analysis for both the human and natural environment. After completion of a science degree with a major in Spatial Systems students can enter the workforce with their current skills or apply to commence a professional masters degree.
A zoology major provides a springboard for entering careers or research in many areas of animal biology, from conservation and wildlife management to the biotech, biomedical and bioinformatics industries. Graduates will be prepared for these pathways by developing skills in appropriate zoological concepts, data collection and analysis, and critical evaluation of empirical arguments.
This major facilitates an understanding of the complexities of animal systems by integrating knowledge from the biology of cells to the behaviour of whole organisms, through a sequence of specialist subjects as well as integrated subjects from a wide range of biological disciplines. Students will gain relevant work-place training by participating first-hand in zoological research.
- Diploma in Mathematical Sciences
Diploma in Mathematical Sciences
The Diploma in Mathematical Sciences is a 100-point diploma, normally taken concurrently with an undergraduate degree.
The Diploma in Mathematical Sciences is a great way to use and develop your mathematical skills and complement your undergraduate studies. The high-level numerical and modelling skills you will gain can be applied across almost every area of employment and are always in demand.
This diploma is studied concurrently on a part-time basis with a bachelor degree. Within the Diploma, students will complete the requirements of the Mathematics and Statistics major from the Bachelor of Science. The Diploma consists of 1 year EFTSL of study completed concurrently with an undergraduate degree usually over 3-4 years.
Please note: The Diploma in Mathematical Sciences is not available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Science who are taking the Data Science, Mathematics and Statistics or Mathematical Physics majors.
- Diploma in Music
Diploma in Music
The Diploma in Music provides students with the opportunity to undertake a tailored sequence of music study and gain a music qualification while completing an undergraduate degree in another field at The University of Melbourne. It is available to students enrolled in an undergraduate degree other than the Bachelor of Music and the Bachelor of Fine Arts. It is studied concurrently with the bachelor degree.
Diploma in Music students study for a music qualification alongside Bachelor of Music students, giving the opportunity to build valuable friendships and networks in a challenging musical environment. A range of study options is available across all areas of specialisation within the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, including practical music, ensemble music performance, aural studies, composition, improvisation, music history and theory. Students are encouraged to follow their own areas of interest, constructing a bespoke program of study from the range of elective choices available.
The Diploma may only be awarded on the completion of the concurrent degree course. This means that graduation from the Diploma will only occur at the same time as graduation from the concurrent course.
- Diploma in Computing
Diploma in Computing
The Diploma in Computing will provide students in almost all areas of study with the option of complementing their principal undergraduate major with a program in the IT area, designed to give them familiarity with a range of data manipulation and presentation techniques. The delivery format via a concurrent diploma is designed to build on and extend students’ main study, with the expectation that students will contribute problems and challenges from their main study area to their Diploma subjects.
- Diploma in Languages
Diploma in Languages
The Diploma in Languages (D-Lang) is a concurrent program and provides students with the opportunity to undertake language study while completing an undergraduate, graduate coursework or RHD program at the University of Melbourne.
There are 12 languages available all offering a sequenced path of study commencing at entry point 1 (beginners), entry point 3 or entry point 5 (post VCE) and continuing through to proficiency level 6 (advanced). Some languages offer advanced entry points (see individual languages for further information). Students are able to commence the program at different entry points pending on proficiency.
The Diploma in Languages will usually add one year duration to your studies. Undergraduate students have the option to fast track and may complete both programs in three and a half or three years. The duration for graduate coursework students varies on their program, advice and permission for graduates should be sought from their home Faculty prior to application.
The Diploma may only be awarded on the completion of both programs. The final 50 points of the Diploma in Languages is HECS-exempt for undergraduate students only. Domestic students enrolled in a Graduate Coursework or Research Higher Degree course will have access to Commonwealth supported places. International Graduate Coursework and RHD students will attract International undergraduate fees for the Diploma in Languages.
A breadth subject is one taken from outside your core studies or major. Most University of Melbourne undergraduates take breadth subjects. Not only will breadth provide you with a greater understanding of the world around you, it will allow you to tailor your course to fit your individual passions and career ambitions. You might, for example, study Science but take breadth in Mandarin Chinese – a great choice for a scientist looking to work internationally and help solve global issues.
You can also use breadth to explore something you’ve always been curious about or to improve your career prospects by complementing your major with a language, communications skills, or business knowhow. ‘Breadth tracks’ (groups of subjects taken throughout your degree) may even qualify you for graduate study in a field that’s very different to your major.
Explore the range of breadth tracks below to see how you can follow your passion or support your career ambitions!
- Feeding the World's Population
Feeding the World's Population
Food is essential to human life on Earth, and is inextricably bound up in our biology, culture and beliefs. Learn about the current and future challenges of global food production, supply, and consumption and discover how food production in Australia is changing to meet the environment and society's changing needs.
- French - Entry Point 1
French - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in French language for beginners.
- Ethics and Investing
Ethics and Investing
This breadth track explores how to avoid repeating the GFC and what you as an investor can do to save the planet.
- Property in the Urban Economy
Property in the Urban Economy
This breadth track provides an introduction to the role of property in the urban economy. Students completing this sequence will be eligible for a credit in Property Markets & Valuation in the 300-point Master of Property or the Graduate Diploma in Property Valuation.
- Development Studies
This breadth track explores issues related to development studies.
- German - Entry Point 1
German - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in German language for beginners.
- Anthropology - self and society
Anthropology - self and society
This breadth track explores issues related to self and society.
- German - Entry Point 3
German - Entry Point 3
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in German language for students who have taken German at VCE level.
- Islamic Studies
This breadth track explores issues related to Islamic Studies.
- Architectural History
This breadth track surveys the history of architecture from the beginnings of shelter to the present day.
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Archaeology.
- Indonesian - Entry Point 1
Indonesian - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Indonesian language for beginners.
- Italian - Entry Point 1
Italian - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Italian language for beginners.
- Italian - Entry Point 3
Italian - Entry Point 3
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Italian language for students who have taken Italian to Year 10/11 Italian or equivalent.
- Italian - Entry Point 5
Italian - Entry Point 5
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Advanced Italian language.
- Japanese - Entry Point 1
Japanese - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Japanese language for beginners.
- Living with Animals
Living with Animals
Investigates human-animal relationships interactions, where they originated, domestication, and where they are now, examining in detail key relationships between humans and animals.
- Management & Leadership in Today's Global Economy
Management & Leadership in Today's Global Economy
This breadth track builds an understanding of the dynamics of business in today's globalised world.
- Chinese Studies
This breadth track explores issues related to Chinese Studies.
- Mechanical Engineering
This breadth track provides students with an introduction to the foundations of Mechanical Engineering.
- Music, Mind and Wellbeing
Music, Mind and Wellbeing
This breadth track explores issues related to music, mind and wellbeing, including development of musical skills at different life stages, the relationship between music and the brain, as well as music and the body and examination of psychological, sociological and scientific research related to performing and creating music.
- Ancient Civilizations B
Ancient Civilizations B
This breadth track explores issues related to ancient civilisations, with a focus on mythology.
- Music outside the western tradition
Music outside the western tradition
This breadth track explores music of non-Western cultures and societies and the people and social processes involved in music-making.
- French - Entry Point 5
French - Entry Point 5
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in French language for students who are at an Advanced Level.
- Ancient Civilizations A
Ancient Civilizations A
This breadth track explores issues related to ancient civilizations.
- Politics and International Studies
Politics and International Studies
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in politics and international studies.
- Contemporary Public Economic Policy
Contemporary Public Economic Policy
This breadth track covers key economics concepts and techniques needed to make sense of contemporary policy debates.
- Engineering and Environments
Engineering and Environments
This track gives students an insight into some fundamental principles of engineering and how engineering interacts with the social and natural environmental settings where water and soil are fundamental resources for human development.
- Russian - Entry Point 1
Russian - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Russian language for beginners.
This breadth track for BCom students qualifies students to apply for a 200-point (two-year) Master of Property.
- Quantitative Methods in Economics
Quantitative Methods in Economics
This breadth track explores how to make sense of the information society and use our data-rich environment to improve decision-making.
- Ancient Egypt and the Near East
Ancient Egypt and the Near East
This breadth track explores issues related to ancient civilizations, with a focus on Ancient Egypt and the Near East.
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in sociology.
- Spanish - Entry Point 1
Spanish - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Spanish language for beginners.
- Spanish - Entry Point 5
Spanish - Entry Point 5
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Advanced Spanish language.
This breadth track introduces students to the basics of architectural design and history and provide students with the prerequisite subjects to apply for entry into the 300-point Master of Architecture.
- Theatre Studies
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Theatre Studies.
- Ancient Greece Studies
Ancient Greece Studies
This breadth track explores issues related to ancient civilizations, with a focus on Ancient Greece.
- Studies in western music
Studies in western music
This breadth track introduces students to fundamental musical concepts including rhythm, melody, harmony, timbre, texture, dynamics and form, and explores the history, culture and social context of western music from the middle ages to the 21st century.
- Creativity, the Arts and Young People
Creativity, the Arts and Young People
Explore artistic play, expression and performance in the growth and creative development of children and young people through active and experimental learning in diverse settings.
- Deafness and Communication
Deafness and Communication
This breadth track explores issues related to Deafness and communication, from a wide range of perspectives including social, cultural, and technological. There is also a focus on visual communication and Auslan, the language of the Australian signing Deaf community.
- Wine and Food
Wine and Food
Explores the interaction between food and wine including the practice of drinking wine and matching food, and also raises some of the conflicting issues on the associated social, economic and health impacts on society.
- Your Money or Your Life
Your Money or Your Life
This breadth track is for those seeking to understand and prepare for the coming crises in the retirement saving of an ageing population.
- Ancient Greek
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Ancient Greek.
- Doing business in Asia
Doing business in Asia
This breadth track improves your chances of achieving business success with our most important trading partners.
- The Socially Responsible Firm
The Socially Responsible Firm
This breadth track builds understanding of the economic and social importance of corporate social responsibility.
- Entrepreneurship & Innovation
Entrepreneurship & Innovation
This breadth track develops knowledge and skills to assist you in starting your new business venture.
- Anthropology - structures, identity and power
Anthropology - structures, identity and power
This breadth track explores issues related to structures, identity and power.
- Anthropology - ritual, meaning and performance
Anthropology - ritual, meaning and performance
This breadth track explores issues related to ritual, meaning and performance from an anthropological perspective.
- Arabic - Entry Point 5
Arabic - Entry Point 5
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in the Arabic language for students who have taken Arabic at VCE level.
- Managing People
This breadth track helps develop an understanding of effective people management, one of the most valuable assets of the successful manager.
- Marketing Communications and Branding
Marketing Communications and Branding
This breadth track examines how desirable brands are an important corporate asset and being able to communicate effectively with your customers is a major determinant of business success.
- Creative Writing
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Creative Writing.
- Middle East and Islam
Middle East and Islam
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in history, with a focus on the Middle East and Islam. It covers the both early and modern history of the Middle East and North Africa, and of Muslim countries in South East Asia.
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge of crime and crime control and helps develop analytical skills in criminology.
This breadth track explores issues related to English literature.
- French - Entry Point 3
French - Entry Point 3
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in French language for students who have taken French at VCE level.
- Fundamentals of Finance and Accounting
Fundamentals of Finance and Accounting
This breadth track offers sufficient accounting and finance to gain a basic level of financial literacy with an emphasis on the operation of financial markets.
- Forensic Accounting
This breadth track offers a moderate level of financial literacy, along with an understanding of the incidence and nature of financial fraud.
- German Entry Point 5
German Entry Point 5
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in German language for students who have taken German at VCE level.
- Global Economic Issues
Global Economic Issues
This breadth track develops an ability to think systematically about the globalization debate.
- Greening Urban Landscapes
Greening Urban Landscapes
This breadth track introduces students to a range of issues associated with greening urban landscapes and helps develop knowledge and skills for selecting and managing plants for urban landscapes.
- Law - Business and Taxation Law
Law - Business and Taxation Law
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in commercial and taxation law.
- Law - Business and Work Law
Law - Business and Work Law
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in commercial and employment law.
- Introduction to Construction
Introduction to Construction
This breadth track provides an introduction to the construction industry at a residential level covering basic structures, materials, construction methods and management of the construction process.
- Indonesian - Entry Point 3
Indonesian - Entry Point 3
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Indonesian language for students who have taken Indonesian at VCE level.
- Japanese - Entry Point 3
Japanese - Entry Point 3
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Japanese language for beginners.
- Law - Media and Intellectual Property Law
Law - Media and Intellectual Property Law
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in media and intellectual property law.
- Law - Business and Competition and Consumer Law
Law - Business and Competition and Consumer Law
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in commercial, competition, and consumer law.
- Leading Community Sport and Recreation
Leading Community Sport and Recreation
This track examines the educational significance of sport and physical activity, and provides students with the knowledge and skills required to lead physical activity in their community.
- Linguistics: English Language Studies
Linguistics: English Language Studies
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and linguistic skills in the structure of English and English language studies.
- Marketing Strategy
This breadth track builds knowledge and skills that enable you to develop effective marketing strategies in a globalized world.
- Linguistics: Language Structure and Analysis
Linguistics: Language Structure and Analysis
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in linguistics and the analysis of language structure, drawing on data from the full range of the world’s languages.
- Managing Change
This breadth track helps you to address one of the most important perennial challenges in business.
- Linguistics: Language in its social and cultural context
Linguistics: Language in its social and cultural context
This breadth track explores issues relating to language in its social and cultural context, both within a single cultural context, and across cultural boundaries.
- Knowing and Learning
Knowing and Learning
Explore the nature of knowledge and how we learn.
- Non-western music performance
Non-western music performance
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in non-western music performance, culture and social contexts from around the world.
- Microbiology and immunology
Microbiology and immunology
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in microbiology and immunology.
- Music Theatre: A Practice Led Study
Music Theatre: A Practice Led Study
This breadth track includes practice led critical studies in music theatre, giving students an opportunity to learn by doing, whilst developing critical thinking and listening skills. In each subject, practical, group singing tutorials are complemented by an engaging lecture series to give students an understanding of what they are embodying when performing some of the most significant and well-known material from the music theatre canon.
- Natural systems and our designed world
Natural systems and our designed world
This breadth track explores the relationship of our cities and towns and the natural environment which underpins our society.
- Positive individuals, organisations and communities
Positive individuals, organisations and communities
This breadth track explores issues related to positive psychology, with a focus on the relationship between well-being, pro-social behaviour and peak performance at the individual, group and community levels.
- Roman Studies
The Roman Studies breadth track surveys a thousand years of Roman political, social and cultural history (500 BCE - 500 CE). Ancient Rome's highly advanced society represents one of the first of the multicultural civilisations of the pre-industrial era and its study therefore offers many timeless insights into our own increasingly cosmopolitan world.
- Product Management
This breadth track builds knowledge and skills to assist you in getting the most out of your products and services.
- Real Estate and the Australian Dream
Real Estate and the Australian Dream
This breadth track explores whether demographic changes explain trends in home ownership and why some retail areas succeed and others fail.
- Government, Public Policy and Management
Government, Public Policy and Management
This breadth track explores issues related to development, implementation and analysis of public policy and management.
- Spanish - Entry Point 3
Spanish - Entry Point 3
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Spanish language for students who have taken Spanish at VCE level.
- Studies in music composition and music language
Studies in music composition and music language
This breadth track develops theoretical knowledge and applied skills in music language and compositional craft.
- The Property Industry
The Property Industry
This breadth track introduces general concepts in the property industry.
- Urban Planning
This breadth track introduces the fundamentals of urban planning, which focuses on the intersections between architecture, landscape architecture, planning and geography.
- Popular Music
This breadth track explores the history, culture and social context of music across a range of popular music styles.
- The Mind of the Consumer
The Mind of the Consumer
This breadth track develops exciting and useful insights into why consumers behave the way they do.
- Urban Design and Planning
Urban Design and Planning
This breadth track gives students a comprehensive foundation in urban design and planning, which focuses on the intersections between architecture, landscape architecture, planning and geography.
- Youth, Citizenship and Identity
Youth, Citizenship and Identity
This breadth track explores issues of youth, citizenship and identity in education.
- Chemical Engineering
This breadth track provides students with an introduction to the foundations of Chemical Engineering.
- Choral performance
This breadth track explores the diversity of choral music and progressively develops knowledge and skills in choral performance.
- Arts Practice and Engagement
Arts Practice and Engagement
This breadth track explores drama/theatre/music and visual arts making and presenting in relation to a diverse range of learning settings from the perspective of the artist and community.
- Arabic - Entry Point 1
Arabic - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in the Arabic language for beginners.
- Chinese - Entry Point 1
Chinese - Entry Point 1
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Chinese language for beginners.
- Chinese - Entry Point 3
Chinese - Entry Point 3
This breadth track progressively develops knowledge and skills in Chinese language for students who have taken Chinese at VCE level.
- Construction Technologies and Principles
Construction Technologies and Principles
This breadth track develops knowledge around a combination of construction technologies and associated structural principles in relation to residential and commercial construction systems.
This breadth track for BCom students qualifies students to apply for a 200-point (two-year) Master of Construction Management. Note that BCom students are exempt from the normal prerequisite for Residential Construction and Structures.
- Economics and Finance
Economics and Finance
This breadth track is for students from outside the Faculty of Business & Economics who seek an eventual career or graduate work related to consulting and investment banking.
- Electrical Engineering
This breadth track provides students with an introduction to the foundations of Electrical Engineering.