Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Psychology

Course 104PY (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Year and Campus: 2012 - Parkville
CRICOS Code: 053178B
Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Level: Undergraduate
Duration & Credit Points: 100 credit points taken over 12 months full time. This course is available as full or part time.


Psychology Sciences
Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences


Arts Student Centre

Course Overview:

Psychology is concerned with the study of human behaviour and experience. People trained in psychology work in a wide variety of areas in health, education, industry, commerce, welfare and government.

Psychology has been a part of a tradition of academic excellence and research achievement at The University of Melbourne. Established as a department in 1946, Psychological Sciences is part of the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences. It is one of the largest departments of psychology in Australia.

Psychological Sciences offers an innovative fourth year program that has been designed to provide students with flexibility and choice in coursework areas, as well as a significant research component.


The objective of the fourth year program is to help students acquire the knowledge, skills, and scholarship necessary for achieving excellence in psychology. More specifically, the fourth year program is designed to provide students with the opportunities to learn the intellectual background, ethical principles, and content areas of psychology as a scientific discipline, and to acquire the general skills for:

  • critically analysing the existing knowledge about a research topic prior to one's own research (eg. sophisticated conceptual analysis of relevant content area/literature/intervention program etc., critical appraisal of one's own and others' research, generation of productive research questions);
  • constructing a research plan (eg. research design, methods of observation) to address one's research question;
  • executing one's research plan adequately to obtain data;
  • analysing the data so as to address the research questions appropriately; and
  • discussing the implications of the results coherently within the context of the existing knowledge relevant to the research topic.
Course Structure & Available Subjects:

The course structure for fourth year involves the completion of three compulsory subjects (which includes the research project), and two elective subjects.

Total 100 points

For information on policies that govern this degree, see Academic Policies and Procedures listed in the Melbourne Policy Library.

Subject Options:

Compulsory subjects:

75 points

Note: the research project requires two consecutive semesters of enrolment.

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Semester 1, Semester 2

Elective subjects:

Students must choose two electives (25 points)

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Entry Requirements:

Entry is open to graduates who have qualified for the degree of Bachelor of Arts with an APAC accredited three-year sequence in psychology (or equivalent). Successful applicants must satisfy the selection criteria of Psychological Sciences and the Faculty.

The Faculty of Arts requires entry into the Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree to be commenced within five years of completion of the Bachelor of Arts. If the Bachelor of Arts degree is more than five years old, the applicant should apply for entry into the Postgraduate Diploma in Psychology. Selection is based on academic performance. A numerical index is computed for each applicant using a combination of second and third level subjects. The index is a weighted average of all third level subjects and all second level psychology subjects. All results are converted to the University of Melbourne scale. Third level marks are weighted by their credit-point value, and second level psychology subjects are weighted by one third of their credit-point value.

In the event of students completing a psychology major as part of a combined degree, the selection committee exercises judgement in the use of non-psychology third level subjects.

For students completing a major as part of the Graduate Diploma in Psychology or other second degree (eg. BLitt), the numerical score is constructed in the manner described, but using only those psychology subjects (if any) completed in the second degree.

Students are ranked for selection according to the index and the highest ranked students falling within the agreed quota are recommended to the Faculty for selection. It should be noted that students are only considered for selection if the credit-point weighted average of all second and third level psychology subjects is at least 70% (when converted to the University of Melbourne scale).

There is no mid year entry into this course. Applications for semester 1

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering requests for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this course are articulated in the Course Description, Course Objectives and Generic Skills of this entry.
The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:

Further Study:

There are many opportunities for further professional training and research. For details, see

Graduate Attributes:

See for more information.

Professional Accreditation:

The fourth year program in psychology offered through the Honours degree is accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) .

Generic Skills:

See course objectives

Links to further information:

Download PDF version.