Positives: Helped me see it wasn’t what I thought I wanted to do
Negatives: For me personally it didn’t make me want to complete my course
My advice to future students is: Make sure Uni is really something you want to do, not feel obliged to do, and look at how much overall the course will cost you
Positives: Students and some units are super interesting
Negatives: Some teachers can’t do communicate properly in English, assignments aren’t set out well and hardly give assignments back by the turn around date, some subjects could only be a couple of weeks through a more interesting unit?
My advice to future students is: That a psyc degree is 6 years not 3 and honours is competitive to get into
Positives: Flexible hours, professional lecturers
Negatives: Large amount of content, exams
My advice to future students is: Work consistently, have a good work ethic
Positives: I enjoy the classes and the lecturers are really good. The topics are also interesting and relevant to what I want to do after uni
Negatives: It can be hard to balance uni work with a job and social life. Also, if you wanted to try a larger range of units, there’s only two general electives in the course
My advice to future students is: Don’t leave assignments to the last minute and make sure you enjoy what you study because that’s the best motivation
I majored in media & communications.
Positives: The teachers were pretty good. The lessons we were taught were quite valuable. There was a lot of practical work which is great for people who learn by doing.
Negatives: There was not much of a social scene in the course or the uni itself. Not to say people weren't nice but people generally went to their class, and then went home.
My advice to future students is: I would do this course if you are a person who learns by doing, we did a lot of activities that were practical like making our own videos, writing articles and making a live TV show.
Positives: The individual teachers are fantastic and work hard to support students. In particular, the course on professional ethics was very thorough and the lecturer did an incredible job of explaining complex subject matter. The course was delivered in conjunction with USQ, and the USQ lecturers delivered amazing classes - if I could go back and do it again, I would just enrol at USQ.
Negatives: The biggest problem is that the university straight up forgot to register the course with Centrelink. Considering that you have 2 full days working in a clinic, plus a half day of case conferencing, plus a full day of classes, trying to hold down enough hours at work to pay the rent AND keep up attendance (not to mention time spent studying or writing assignments outside of class) was almost impossible. ACU in general really appears to stop caring about its students as soon as the course is paid for, but this was particularly ridiculous. Further, the course was delivered across two campuses over 40 kilometres apart - there was no option to study at one campus, take the other courses online, or to get any flexibility in when and how you attended. There were very few choices in electives, and courses were delivered as discrete entities, with little to no attempts to build on previous knowledge or deliver a holistic education.
My advice to future students is: Stay away from ACU completely. If you want to do this course, enrol at USQ; they actually care about their students.
The first thing that grabbed me about this particular course was its subject offerings. I was looking for Arts and Sciences, with particular interest in Psychology, Youth Work (counselling, social work, ethical research, etc.) and Drama. This university was the only institution in central Melbourne that offered both of these areas as face-to-face units on campus in the single Arts course.
The location of the university and it's small campus allows for a tight-knit community culture, and as an undergraduate, this was wonderful. The drama subjects were run by knowledgeable and experienced professors, and provided me with challenging, social and practical experiences that I have taken into my profession as a Drama.
Some of the subjects were similar, however. For example, I took ""The production process"" in my first year, and then ""Theatre production"" in my third year. One was meant to be an introduction to devising and applying stagecraft in the pre-production, production, and post-production process, and then by third year, we were meant to be able to independently plan a public theatre event. It was a thoroughly enjoyable and intense experience. Some of the subjects I took seemed to be fillers that year.
In my third year of drama, I had to elect film studies, which was basically a first year media subject, and in second year I had to opt for something called ""Art and Culture"" which was interesting but not a drama subject. As for Psychology, everything was much more established and on point! I took ""learning and behaviour"", ""social psychology"", ""abnormal psychology"" which was AMAZING, ""Statistics"" (which you need to take in any psychology course, by the way), and ""lifespan development"", just to name a few. They built upon what I had learned in VCE Psychology but also, these were high pressure subjects and there was A LOT of churning out reports and working very hard. I would still recommend it, though, especially if you are like me and want to do two very different majors!
Youth Work was just fabulous. I took a minor and have made lifelong friends with those doing the Bachelor of Youth Work. The subjects have truly helped me to better understand wellbeing, active support and protection of young people of different cultures and experience which directly influences my career as a secondary school teacher. One stark negative I have with the course I completed was that they had a compulsory core set of units that nursing and Arts students had to do and these were based around Catholic values. The ones I elected weren't explicitly about the religion, but there were some that were! I recall one unit called ""What Christian's believe"", but I took ""Music and Spirituality"" which turned out to be a lot about sacred architecture and art/icons related to the Christian Church. They also have a program called ""Our World, Community and Vulnerability"", which is all about human dignity, human flourishing and social justice. Because I had to take this, I had no room for a 12th psychology unit, which would have gotten me a ""Psychology specialisation"", ie: Bachelor of Arts (Psychology).
You also need to do a unit on community engagement (this happens to align with the Catholic side of the uni but it wasn't explicit) which includes 120 hours of community engagement. I did mine at a local school playground created to give low income refugee background families a backyard to play in as most of the locals lived in government housing and high rise flats with no playing area. Others did there's at the Brotherhood of St Lawrence op shop, African Reaading Club with Save the Children Australia, or some other place that involved engaging with the community. It was actually fabulous and gave me some much needed work experience on the resume!
The administration at ACU is average (I found the course outlines and marking rubrics inconsistent, which I now notice a lot more after completing a Master of Teaching) and the food is OK. There isn't much in the way of social groups/societies, but they have a good gym and it is a lovely place to be. They focus on cultural respect, human dignity, research and compassion. I loved the course and I have made lifelong friends and colleagues.
My advice to future students is: Consider your travel, and make sure you check out the subject structure and unit offerings as well as the outlines or overviews to make sure you chose what is right for you! Do the units that you are most passionate about!! Pack your lunch and don't waste too much money. Enjoy your time at university and document it well. It will fly by.
Positives: The lecturers are really good and the subjects are really interesting.
My advice to future students is: Make sure you understand what's required to be a psychologist (6 yrs of study) if that's what you're wanting to study.
Positives: Passionate supportive teaching staff with real world experience in various areas of the industry
My advice to future students is: Look into what the subjects within your chosen course actually entail.
Positives: The course is flexible, knowing I can bend it into basically any major I want.
Negatives: Some units are boring
My advice to future students is: Don’t think of an arts degree as the lowest degree, BOA is actually one of the best courses
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