Bachelor of Psychological Science

Uncover our inner workings  

Are you fascinated by the human mind? Do you wonder what motivates our behaviour?

Psychological science investigates the way people think, behave, feel and learn. It studies processes of the human mind— including personality, intelligence and memory—so that we can better understand ourselves.

What will you do?

Our Bachelor of Psychological Science nurtures creativity, analysis and communication skills. You will:

  • learn about human development and the biological bases of behaviour
  • investigate the mechanics of perception and learning
  • explore the nature of motivation and emotion
  • gain experience with psychological tests
  • develop skills for counselling
  • choose between over 35 majors and electives from related disciplines
  • design and undertake meaningful research projects.

Where could it take you?

You could become a social psychologist, doing large-scale research to change the way we go about our lives. You might work in community services with people of all ages and backgrounds, or in market research and advertising. Perhaps you’ll go on to further study in the field and become a qualified psychologist.

Graduate entry

A graduate entry pathway is available. Learn more.


  • World Top 200 Psychology School*
  • 23% industry growth predicted by 2025^
  • Develop flexible and transferable skills

*QS world rankings, 2021
^Imip.gov.au Occupation projections

Entry Requirements

For our students who are studying offshore in 2021 and 2022, the University will continue to offer high-quality access to the learning resources remotely for most programs. This includes all lectures, tutorials and other support material. Students will be advised in advance if there are course components that cannot be provided in remote mode and, wherever possible, offered alternative courses. Please refer to the COVID-19 FAQ page for a list of programs where in-person attendance is required.

Choose your applicant type to view the relevant admissions information for this program.
I am a:

Domestic applicants

Admissions information

SATAC Code www.satac.edu.au
2021 CSP ATAR 65.25
2021 CSP IB 24
Guaranteed Entry Score - ATAR 80
Guaranteed Entry Score - IB 29
Deferment Yes - 2 year
Intake February and July
Enquiries Future Students team

2021 Admissions Data for school leavers
ATAR
(raw ATAR, excluding any applicable adjustment factors)
Lowest ATAR to receive an offer 59.15
Median ATAR to receive an offer 78.3
Highest ATAR to receive an offer 99.1
Selection Rank
(ATAR plus any adjustment factors)
Lowest Selection Rank to receive an offer 65.25
Median Selection Rank to receive an offer 92.9
Highest Selection Rank to receive an offer 99.95
Minimum eligibility score 65
Additional criteria considered Selection rank only
Selection Criteria
Recent Secondary Education Applicants with recent secondary education are those whose admission is primarily based on the completion of Year 12 within the last two years, however if you completed your secondary education more than two years ago, you may still be able to be considered on the basis of your secondary schooling. You must not have completed more than 2 years full time equivalent university study (48 units). You compete for a place with your Selection Rank (ATAR plus any applicable adjustment factors). Applicants who have not achieved a competitive Selection Rank (ATAR plus any applicable adjustment factors) required for selection may be selected based on the grades in selected year 12 subjects. Applicants do not need to apply to be considered for subject-based entry, as this will automatically be done by SATAC on behalf of the University. For more information, please see: https://www.adelaide.edu.au/study/undergraduate/entry-pathways/recent-secondary-education/ Indigenous applicants may be eligible for entry through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Pathway. See Wirltu Yarlu for further information.
Higher Education Study You must have completed at least six months full time equivalent higher education study (the number of courses and units will vary depending on your prior institution however at the University of Adelaide, this equates to 4 courses / 12 units). A Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated for each separate program you have undertaken (apart from some double degree programs where the GPA is combined). You compete on the basis of your best GPA. Indigenous applicants may be eligible for entry through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Pathway. See Wirltu Yarlu for further information.
Vocational Education and Training (VET) study You must have completed an AQF Certificate IV or above from a Registered Training Organisation. Your application will be ranked according to the level of the award. Indigenous applicants may be eligible for entry through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Pathway. See Wirltu Yarlu for further information.
Work and life experience To be eligible to sit the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT) as as pathway for entry, you must be 18 years or over before 1 February 2022. If you have studied at higher education level in the last two years (for 2022 entry this means you were enrolled in either 2021 or 2020), you must not have accumulated more than a TOTAL of 2 years full-time (or part-time equivalent) higher education study (ie. including any study prior to 2020). If you meet this criteria, you will be ranked according to your result in the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT). Your STAT result is not weighted between verbal and quantitative components. Indigenous applicants may be eligible for entry through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Pathway. See Wirltu Yarlu for further information.
Other Entry Pathways
How to Apply
Apply through SATAC: www.satac.edu.au

Student Profile
Applicant background Semester one/Full year intake 2021
Number of students Percentage of all students
(A) Higher Education study
(includes a bridging or enabling course)
45 18.4%
(B) Vocational education and training (VET) study 5 2.0%
(C) Work and life experience
(admitted on the basis of previous achievement not in the other three categories)
24 9.8%
(D) Recent secondary education:
  • Admitted solely on the basis of ATAR
    (regardless of whether this includes the consideration of adjustment factors)
141 57.8%
  • Admitted where both ATAR and additional criteria were considered
    (e.g. portfolio, audition, extra test, early offer conditional on minimum ATAR)
N/A N/A
  • Admitted on the basis of other criteria only and ATAR was not a factor
    (e.g. special consideration, audition alone, schools recommendation scheme with no minimum ATAR requirement)
12 4.9%
International students 17 7.0%
All students 244 100.0%

Fees and Scholarships

Choose your applicant type to view the relevant fees and scholarships information for this program.
I am a:

Domestic applicants

Indicative annual tuition fees
Commonwealth-supported place: $8,710

More information on Student Contribution Amounts.

Scholarships

These scholarships, as well as many others funded by industry and non-profit organisations, are available to potential and currently enrolled students.

Find a Scholarship.

Careers

Career Readiness

Psychology prepares graduates for a range of exciting careers that require superior problem-solving, critical thinking and understanding of human behaviour, such as:

  • human resource management
  • advertising and marketing
  • evaluation and applied research
  • mental health services
  • youth work
  • family and social services
  • public and private sector management
  • juvenile justice and corrective services
  • relationship counselling
  • residential care worker
  • private sector administration and management
  • correctional services

Graduates from the Bachelor of Psychological Science work across a range of jobs and sectors, in addition to the option of engaging in further study to hold a career as a Psychologist. Graduates from this degree can look in areas such as research assistants, recruitment agencies, government agencies such as Centerlink, rehabilitation agencies, marketing companies, human resources or any type of area that can utilise skills in data analysis, critical thinking, report writing, time management, communication and presentation.

The Bachelor of Psychological Science leads to a variety of careers, some of which will require further study.

The University of Adelaide Careers Service prepares, inspires and empowers students to achieve successful career transitions and connect with industry.

Graduate Attributes

The objective of this program is to produce graduates with specific attributes as outlined in University of Adelaide Graduate Attributes.
  1. Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth
  2. Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving
  3. Teamwork and communication skills
  4. Professionalism and leadership readiness
  5. Intercultural and ethical competency
  6. Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural competency
  7. Digital capabilities
  8. Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

Professional Accreditation

This program has been accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council. Graduates who have completed this program will be eligible to apply for an honours year, followed by a two-year postgraduate qualification. This sequence of study will lead to professional registration as a psychologist.

Potential careers

Mental Health Worker, Animal Behaviourist, Ministerial Adviser, Parliamentary Member, Development Officer, Project Officer, Welfare Officer, Marketer / Marketing Manager, Human Resource Manager, Psychologist, Psychotherapist, Clinical Psychologist, Community Psychologist, Organisational Psychologist, Counselling Psychologist, Educational & Developmental Psychologist, Forensic Psychologist, Sports & Exercise Psychologist, Health Psychologist, Medical Research, Careers Counsellor, Political Adviser, ...

Degree Structure

The Bachelor of Psychological Science is a flexible degree with a variety of elective courses available. Students can choose their courses based on general interest or to broaden their major.

In the first year, students are able to choose four elective courses from areas such as arts, health and medical sciences, sciences, computer science and commerce, alongside the four core psychology courses.

At the beginning of second year, students either select a second major or continue to choose from a wide variety of electives alongside five core psychology courses.

In the third year, students complete four core psychology courses, including a compulsory research methodology course. The other four courses can be selected from psychology courses or electives. For students who chose to undertake a second major, the electives in third year will consist of second major courses.

The main objective of the degree is to provide students with a thorough education in the scientific discipline of psychology, while also introducing students to the application of the discipline. Since psychology is an evidence-based discipline, students will also have an opportunity to find out about the range of methodologies employed to collect and analyse data.

The Bachelor of Psychological Science enables students to graduate with a psychology specialty and a second specialty chosen from more than 35 available topics.

On completion of this degree, students are eligible to apply for an honours year in psychology at the University of Adelaide as well as other universities around the country that offer honours programs accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council. It should be noted that an honours year in psychology is required to gain provisional registration with the Psychology Board of Australia.

To become a registered psychologist, students need to complete a 2-year Masters program. At the University of Adelaide we offer two areas of specialisation; Master of Psychology (Clinical) and Master of Psychology (Health).

Academic Program Rules

The Calendar is a comprehensive handbook of the University's academic program rules.

Areas of Specialisation

Students have the option of completing a second major in the Bachelor of Psychological Science. Along with their core psychology courses students can choose from one of the following areas:

  • Addiction Studies
  • Anthropology
  • Asian Studies
  • Biochemistry
  • Chinese Studies
  • Classics
  • Computer Science
  • Creative Writing
  • Criminology
  • English
  • European Studies
  • French Studies
  • Gender Studies
  • Genetics
  • Geography
  • Environment and Population
  • German Studies
  • History
  • Human Neuroscience
  • Indigenous Knowledges and Society
  • Indonesian Studies
  • International Development
  • Italian Studies
  • Japanese Studies
  • Linguistics
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Microbiology
  • Modern Greek Studies
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Politics & International Studies
  • Population Health
  • Sociology
  • Spanish Studies


Example Study Plan

To qualify for the degree of Bachelor of Psychological Science, the student must satisfactorily complete a program of study consisting of core Psychology courses.

A second major, as specified in the Bachelor of Psychological Science Academic Program Rules, is optional and not a compulsory requirement for this degree. Students choosing a second major must also complete electives to the value of 15 units, with a combined total of not less than 72 units. 

Students choosing not to complete a second major must complete electives up to the value of 39 units with a combined total of not less than 72 units. Students have the option of completing all six Level 3 core psychology cores.

Indicative study plan
Year 1          S1 PSYCHOL 1000
Psychology IA
PSYCHOL 1005
Research Methods in Psychology (BPsychSc)
Open Elective Level I Open Elective Level I
S2 PSYCHOL 1001
Psychology IB
PSYCHOL 1006
Psychology Skills & Applications
Open Elective Level I Open Elective Level I
Year 2 S1 PSYCHOL 2004
Doing Research in Psychology
PSYCHOL 2006
Foundations of Perception & Cognition
**PSYCHOL 2008
Big Picture Psychology: Global Challenges, Psychological Perspectives
Open Elective Level II
S2 PSYCHOL 2007
Psychology in Society
PSYCHOL 2005
Foundations of Health & Lifespan
Open Elective Level II Open Elective Level II
Year 3 S1 Two from the following three
PSYCHOL 3022 Individual Differences, Personality & Assess
PSYCHOL 3027 Psychology, Science & Society
PSYCHOL 3026 Learning & Behaviour
Open Elective Level III Open Elective Level III
S2 PSYCHOL 3020 Doing Research in Psych: Advanced (compulsory)
One from the following two
PSYCHOL 3021 Health & Lifespan Developmental Psych
PSYCHOL 3023 Perception & Cognition
Open Elective Level III Open Elective Level III
*Choose three from the five core psychology courses offered at level 3.
** This course can be done in either semester 1 or 2


Concurrent degrees

Students are able to study a second degree concurrently with their Bachelor of Psychological Science degree. This will take four years. Credit will be granted towards both degrees for Level 1 and 2 courses. Students will need to complete a full load at Level 3 for both the Bachelor of Psychological Science and for the concurrent degree.

Assessment

Assessment will be based on a combination of oral presentations, practical assignments, tutorial participation and written examinations. Both face-to-face and online methodologies will be used.

Related Degrees

Discover psychology at the University of Adelaide

"The degree has let me explore all of these facets of psychology I hadn't considered before. You really get to see the way psychology is integrated into the world more than you think."

Nicola Seal

Bachelor of Psychological Science

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.

Last updated: Wednesday, 10 Nov 2021