Tertiary pathways

University pathways

Where do I start?

The Good Universities Guide will help you find courses at Australia’s top universities, TAFEs, and training colleges. Whether you are looking to study a degree, enrol in an Master ofBusiness Administration (MBA) program or searching for more vocational training, you will be sure to find a course to suit you. View the e-Book here.

University / Tertiary Admission Centres   

Tertiary Admission Centres (TACs) receive and process applications for admission to courses on behalf of many of the tertiary institutions in each state and territory. 

They do not select applicants or make decisions regarding their qualifications, but instead act as a central agency for all applications and advise applicants of the result of their application. They typically process applications for those entering undergraduate courses at public universities in the February enrolment period, but in some cases may also process applications for postgraduate courses, VET courses, mid-year entry and courses at private universities and other private providers. 

If you’re applying for a course that is in another state or territory, you will typically need to apply through that state or territory’s TAC. 

The University or TAFE course information should specify whether you need to apply through a TAC. If you’re not sure, or if you have special circumstances (e.g. you are a non-school leaver), contact the institution for advice. 

Vocational education and training (VET)

VET is designed to teach you the knowledge and specific practical skills to help you in the workplace. It’s delivered in a number of ways – through schools, dual-sector universities with VET courses, TAFE institutes, private registered training organisations and community colleges.

A VET qualification or program can be a: Certificate I, II, III or IV; Diploma; Advanced Diploma; Apprenticeship; Traineeship; Graduate Certificate; or Graduate Diploma.

University applications

Applications are directed to the following institutions in each state or territory:

TASMANIA: the University of Tasmania (UTAS). Find out more here.

VICTORIA: the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC). Find out more here.

AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY AND NEW SOUTH WALES: Universities Admissions Centre (UAC). Find out more here.

Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA) Degrees. Find out more here.

QUEENSLAND: Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC). Find out more here.

SOUTH AUSTRALIA AND NORTHERN TERRITORY: South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC). Find out more here.

WESTERN AUSTRALIA: Tertiary Institutions Service Centre (TISC). Find out more here.

Tertiary Information Service 

The Tertiary Information Service (TIS) is a collective of universities, TAFE institutes and independent tertiary colleges helping students prepare for the future careers through free events in Victoria. Prior to COVID-19, the TIS visited Tasmania each year with representatives from various tertiary providers, offering events and opportunities for St Mary’s College students to attend. Students will be informed of any such opportunities as they emerge.

Medical, dental and clinical science degree programs 


Students applying for a medical, dental or clinical science degree program are required to complete the University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT ANZ). This admissions test is used by the UCAT ANZ consortium of universities in Australia and New Zealand. Find out more here.

The test helps universities to select applicants with the most appropriate abilities and professional behaviours required for new doctors and dentists to be successful in their clinical careers. It is used in collaboration with other admissions processes such as interviews and academic qualifications. 


MedEntry is a University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) preparation provider run by specialist practising doctors and academics. Find out more here.

There are also other providers and students interested in preparing for UCAT are encouraged to research additional options.

Vocational pathways – traineeships

Apprenticeships and traineeships combine practical work with a course of structured training. This allows apprentices and trainees to acquire theoretical knowledge and gain a nationally recognised VET qualification, while working part-time in the industry.

Gap year pathways

There are many organisations and companies that provide gap year programs. Students who are seeking a gap year are encouraged to research options.

Preparing myself to participate independently one pace beyond Year 12

UTAS has shared a suite of useful online resources and guides for health and wellbeing practices while completing further study or training on their website here.

Visit various Australian university websites directly via the links below.






SMC Toolbox

Groving our love of learning

St Mary's College is located on the traditional lands of the muwinina people of the South East Nation. We acknowledge and deeply respect the palawa people, the Tasmanian Aboriginal Community, and all Elders past and present. We are committed to learning alongside our students and community in this place, nipaluna, and support the continued sharing of knowledge and culture.