Entry requirements


Charles Darwin University offers a range of undergraduate degree courses from nursing and science through to business and law.

If you need advice about your course selection, contact Student Central for referral to the relevant study area.

School leavers

The minimum entry requirement for undergraduate degree courses is met by successful completion of the Northern Territory Certificate of Education (or equivalent) and a Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR) of 60 or higher.

What if my ATAR is not high enough?

If your ATAR is lower than 60 and you want to study for a degree, there are other pathways you can follow to meet the minimum admission requirements.

Pre-requisites, assumed knowledge and quotas

There are no pre-requisites for CDU courses.

This has been replaced by assumed knowledge for some courses.

Assumed knowledge indicates the minimum level of knowledge for students considering a course and should be used as a guide to subject choices for students undertaking year 12.

All courses have a quota, i.e. a maximum number of places available each year. For some courses, the number of eligible applicants exceeds the number of places available so applicants must be ranked in order of merit to enable selection to take place.

Adult learners

Not everybody goes straight from school into higher education. In fact, many mature age students would argue that life experience makes the tertiary experience all the more rewarding.

Charles Darwin University has a large number of mature age students entering the university through a number of different pathways. If you do not meet the minimum entry requirements (below) and would like to discuss your options, feel free to contact Student Services or call into Student Central, located at both Casuarina and Alice Springs campuses.

Am I classified as an adult learner?
To be a mature age student you must be 19 years or older at the start of your first semester and fulfil other general entry requirements.

The minimum entry requirements for most undergraduate degree courses are:

Postgraduate study

Charles Darwin University offers a range of postgraduate courses specialising in Indigenous cultural studies, resource management, governance, health and education. Go to the HE Course Guide for more information on postgraduate courses.


School leavers

As a general guideline, most certificate courses do not have specific entry requirements but presume a satisfactory level of literacy and numeracy.

Diploma courses generally require successful completion of final year secondary schooling (year 12), completion of a certificate IV, or relevant experience.

Check CDU courses for particular admission requirements for individual courses.

Adult learners

If you wish to study for a diploma but did not complete year 12, you may be interested in a Tertiary Enabling Program (TEP) or Preparation for Tertiary Success (PTS) for Indigenous students.

These programs are designed to prepare you for enrolment in an undergraduate degree course or VET diploma course.

Have a look through the VET Student Guide for more details.

What if I need help with English?

If you are a domestic student, speak English as a second language and need help preparing for VET study, contact the Office of VET Business Improvement and ask about the Adult Migrant English Program.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students

Charles Darwin University aims to ensure that Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander people have access to all the skills they need to achieve their aspirations.

If you have the desire to study we will help you find a course that suits your qualifications and ambitions, and support you through the learning process.

International students

There are more than 600 international students who choose to build their skills by studying at CDU.
Find out what you can study and what it is like to be a student at the University.

Finance and assistance


CDU scholarships are sponsored by individuals, businesses, government, community groups and the University, to assist students with the financial burden of studying. A number of the scholarships offer students the opportunity to participate in paid work experience during semester breaks and graduate positions on completion of study.

Find out if you can apply and what for.


Learn more about the fees for your course.

If you have any questions contact Student Central on 1800 061 963 or email enrolmenthelp@cdu.edu.au.

Read all about it

More information about CDU courses, fees, pathways and entry requirements can be found on the Student Prospectus and guides site.