Bachelor of Science (Honours)

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If you haven’t yet chosen an area of science to specialise in, but are sure that—once you have—you’ll want to follow that path as far as it can take you, this degree’s for you.

Our direct-entry Bachelor of Science (Honours) builds on Bachelor of Science. You’ll thoroughly explore your scientific curiosity before specialising, then go on to gain next-level capability and an employability edge.

What will you do?

Your first year is all about discovery. You’ll investigate a number of scientific fields, before choosing a major to focus on in years two and three (see Bachelor of Science for choices).

During this time you’ll enjoy the same fantastic opportunities offered to all Bachelor of Science students. That includes developing real-world connections through internships, and potentially gaining global experience with international study. In your honours year, you’ll then advance along either a disciplinary research or professional skills pathway.

The disciplinary research path is the most research-intensive. Working with a specific researcher or research group, you’ll undertake a major research project, together with advanced coursework, in one of the following study areas:

  • Agricultural science
  • Animal behaviour
  • Animal science
  • Chemistry
  • Ecology and evolutionary biology
  • Energy geoscience
  • Environmental geoscience
  • Geology
  • Geophysics
  • Molecular and biomedical science
  • Physics
  • Plant science
  • Soil science
  • Wine science

Search for an Honours supervisor.

Where could it take you?

Depending on your study choices, you could emerge well-prepared for a high-level career in a specific scientific discipline. You might provide society with critical big-picture insights as a science generalist. Or perhaps you’ll aim higher still and go on to Masters or PhD-level research. Wherever you want to go, you’ll be well placed.

Direct access to industry leaders and paid internship opportunities: The Academy by Deloitte
This degree gives you the opportunity to be part of our new The Academy by Deloitte You’ll be part of a supportive student cohort that learns from one another and industry leaders. Formal and informal experiences will allow you to build relationships within the Deloitte network.

  • Ranked 124 in world for Natural Science^
  • Five star rating for student support in science#
  • STEM jobs growing twice as fast as any other jobs**

^QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2022
#Good Universities Guide, 2021
**Labour Force Survey, Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2019

Entry Requirements

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

Domestic applicants

Admissions information

SATAC Code 354101
2023 CSP ATAR 66.55
2023 CSP IB 24.25
Guaranteed Entry Score - ATAR 75
Guaranteed Entry Score - IB 27.5
Deferment Yes - 2 year

February and July


None, however Stage 2 Chemistry, Mathematical Methods, Physics or Specialist Mathematics are prerequisites for some first year courses

Assumed Knowledge

Stage 2 Chemistry, Physics and Maths Methods

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). 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 a pathway for entry, you must be 18 years or over before 1 February 2024. If you have studied at higher education level in the last two years (for 2024 entry this means you were enrolled in either 2023 or 2022), 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 2022). 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

2023 Admissions Data for school leavers
(raw ATAR, excluding any applicable adjustment factors)
Lowest ATAR to receive an offer 61.3
Median ATAR to receive an offer 79
Highest ATAR to receive an offer 94.75
Selection Rank
(ATAR plus any adjustment factors)
Lowest Selection Rank to receive an offer 66.55
Median Selection Rank to receive an offer 83.5
Highest Selection Rank to receive an offer 99.95
Minimum eligibility score 65
Additional criteria considered Selection rank only
  • Admissions Transparency Data
    Student Profile
    Applicant background Semester one/Full year intake 2023
    Number of students Percentage of all students
    (A) Higher Education study
    (includes a bridging or enabling course)
    6 40.0%
    (B) Vocational education and training (VET) study N/A N/A
    (C) Work and life experience
    (admitted on the basis of previous achievement not in the other three categories)
    <5 N/A
    (D) Recent secondary education:
    • Admitted solely on the basis of ATAR
      (regardless of whether this includes the consideration of adjustment factors)
    8 53.3%
    • 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)
    N/A N/A
    International students N/A N/A
    All students 15 100.0%

Ready to Apply?

Find out more about the application process and start your studies at the University of Adelaide.

Be sure to check the critical dates to avoid missing application deadlines.


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: $8,400

Where the standard duration of the program is less than one year the full cost of the program is displayed.

More information on Student Contribution Amounts.


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.


Career Readiness

The scientific approach to problem-solving, maturity, and self-discipline gained during the Honours year equips our graduates for a wide variety of career. Examples of the jobs that our Honours graduates find are: policy advisors, consultants, science communicators, analysts, and researchers in universities, hospitals, government, and industry. 

Direct access to industry leaders and paid internship opportunities: The Academy by Deloitte
Students who as part of their studies take part in The Academy by Deloitte experience will have the benefit of undertaking a paid internship with Deloitte. This internship is designed to shape their business readiness through significant real-world client exposure, access to multiple networking opportunities and relevant professional training.

Further study

Honours graduates may choose to continue their research training with postgraduate study, such as a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). A PhD is usually a 3 year program that provides students with the opportunity to carry out an original research project and explore in great detail a specific area of science. 

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

Potential careers

Graduates of this program have gone on to roles such as:

Atmospheric Chemist;  Palaeontologist;  Plant Scientist;  Public Health Scientist;  Ecotour Operator;  Research and Development Manager;  Environmental Manager;  Flavour Chemist;  Geobiologist;  Geospatial Scientist ...

Degree Structure

Academic Program Rules

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

Bachelor of Science (Honours) [direct entry]

To qualify for the degree of Bachelor of Science (Honours) [Direct Entry], students must satisfactorily complete a program of study consisting of the following requirements with a combined total of not less than 96 units, comprising:

Courses to the value of 72 units from the Bachelor of Science including

  • Core course to the value of 3 units.
  • Elective courses up to the value of 45 units, which may include a second major
  • Broadening electives to the value of 9 units.
  • Level I courses to a maximum of 30 units.
  • Level III Science courses to the value of at least 24 units.
  • At least one major to the value of at least 24 units from the following:
    • Biochemistry
    • Bioinformatics
    • Chemistry
    • Ecology and Environmental Science
    • Evolutionary Biology
    • Experimental and Theoretical Physics
    • Genetics
    • Geology
    • Geology and Earth Resources
    • Geology and Geophysics
    • Geology and Palaeontology
    • Microbiology & Immunology
    • Palaeontology
    • Palaeontology and Evolution
    • Physics
    • Physics and Geophysics
    • Plant Biology
    • Pure and Applied Chemistry
    • Soil Science
    • Theoretical Physics
      • Note: A student who has completed a major in a Science discipline and also completes courses that fulfil requirements for a major as specified under the Academic Program Rules for the degree of Bachelor of Mathematical and Computer Sciences, shall be awarded that Mathematical and Computer Sciences major in addition to the Science major.
  • Courses to the value of 24 units, chosen from the Bachelor of Science (Honours).
    • For Professional Pathway students, Level IV courses must include Core Courses (12 units) and Professional Research Project (12 units) that is more applied than those in the Research pathway and may provide the opportunity to work with industry on an applied discipline project or in science communication, science education, science innovation, science policy or project management.
    • For Research Pathway students, Level IV courses must include Core Courses and Research Project with unit value dependent upon Specialisation Area:
      • Agricultural Science
      • Animal Behaviour
      • Animal Science
      • Chemistry
      • Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
      • Energy Geoscience
      • Environmental Geoscience
      • Geology
      • Geophysics
      • Molecular and Biomedical Science
      • Physics
      • Plant Science
      • Soil Science
      • Wine Science

Areas of Specialisation

Majors can be chosen in the following areas:

Biomedical Science

Chemical Sciences

Earth Sciences

Evolutionary biology and ecology


Soil science and plant biology

Example Study Plan

To satisfy the requirements for Core Courses, students who have chosen a Research Honours pathway must complete courses to the value of at least 9 units dependent upon their specialisation area.

All courses are 3 units unless stated otherwise.

Year I
All of the following courses must be completed:  BIOLOGY 1101 Biology I: Molecules, Genes and Cells
CHEM 1100 Chemistry IA
CHEM 1101 Foundations of Chemistry IA
GEOLOGY 1100 Planet Earth
GEOLOGY 1300 Extra-Terrestrial Geoscience
PHYSICS 1100 Physics IA

Research Project

Research Pathway students must complete courses to the value of at least 12 units taken from the appropriate Specialisation Area in the Bachelor of Science (Honours).

Broadening Experience

The broadening experience requirement can be met by any of the following:
Study abroad or exchange


Courses to the value of at least 3 units from the following:


courses chosen from outside the major area of study.

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Last updated: Thursday, 6 Jun 2024