Thinking about going to uni next year? You might want to consider applying for an Early Entry program. There are heaps of benefits: not just getting your place locked in before exams, but you can also get exclusive scholarships, access to mentoring and events, support while you study, and more.
But if you think early entry is only for high achievers, think again. There are heaps of programs out there for all kinds of students.
Early entry programs
If you are doing well at school, there are lots of programs you can choose from for early entry. If you’re acing your subjects, you might like to try Western Sydney’s HSC True Reward Program, or UWA’s Early Offer Program. But as we mentioned, there are early entry programs that look at other criteria as well, not just your grades.
If you’re an Indigenous student, there are lots of programs out there to help you get an early offer. For example, Macquarie’s ATSIEP entry pathway lets you apply even if you don’t meet the required ATAR for your dream course. The University of Sydney’s Gadigal Program also has lower entry requirements, and other great perks like ongoing support throughout your studies.
Most of these programs will require you to provide some confirmation of your Aboriginality, and maybe also attend an interview or have a letter of recommendation from someone in your community.
Rural and regional
Live far away from your nearest university? That doesn’t mean you can’t get an early offer – in fact, it might work in your benefit. Some programs offer bonuses for students from rural and regional areas. For example, you could get extra adjustment factors based on rurality if you apply for the ACU Guarantee program.
To get the full benefit from these early entry programs, you’ll obviously need to be able to prove you’ve lived in a rural or regional area for a certain amount of time.
Leadership and community involvement
Spent a lot of time volunteering while at school? Were you a school leader or sports captain? You can be rewarded for your extra efforts with an early offer to uni. Macquarie’s Leaders and Achievers scheme is perfect for people who have shown leadership qualities and commitment, or if you’ve been school captain or dux you might like to apply for the University of Sydney’s Future Leaders scheme.
To apply for these schemes, you’ll need to show you have some leadership or community involvement while you’re at school. This can include volunteering, being school or sports captain, tutoring younger students, and more.
If you’re artistic and creative, portfolio entry could be a great option. Instead of receiving a place based on your school results, you can submit a portfolio of work or perform in an audition and gain entry based on this instead. If you’re keen to study art, design, construction, or communication and media, you can get into all those courses through the UC’s portfolio entry pathway. Or if you’re a budding visual artist, you might like to apply for the University of Sydney’s Creative Arts Special Admission Scheme.
These schemes require you to have a portfolio showcasing your best work, or to perform at an in-person or online audition. Some of them might also consider your academic results in combination with your portfolio or audition.
There are heaps of other programs for all sorts of students. The Charles Sturt Advantage allows you to get an early offer based on your soft skills, while CQUni’s Prinicpal’s Recommendation Scheme lets you receive an offer based on a recommendation from your principal. Some programs let you complete short courses and base your entry on your results from those, such as La Trobe’s Prepare for La Trobe program. You could also apply using your Year 11 results for some programs, like Murdoch’s Year 12 Early Offer Program.
Where can I find out more?
You can find all of the early entry programs on offer from universities around Australia, including benefits and application guidelines, in our updated Early Entry guide – coming very soon.