single degree

Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) - Science

A single four year undergraduate degree offered by the ANU College of Health and Medicine and ANU College of Science

PHB
  • Length 4 year full-time
  • Minimum 192 Units
Admission requirements
First year student? There’s more information about enrolling in your degree.
  • Mode of delivery
    • In Person
  • Field of Education
    • Natural and Physical Sciences
  • Academic contact
  • Length 4 year full-time
  • Minimum 192 Units
Admission requirements
First year student? There’s more information about enrolling in your degree.
  • Mode of delivery
    • In Person
  • Field of Education
    • Natural and Physical Sciences
  • Academic contact

Program Requirements

The Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) requires completion of 192 units, of which:

A maximum of 60 units can come from the completion of 1000 level courses


The 192 units must include:

144 units of which:

A minimum of 96 units must come from completion of courses from the Science course list

A minimum of 30 units from completion of 3000 level courses from the Science course list

36 units must come from completion of Advanced Studies, including:

A minimum of 18 units from the completion of Advanced Studies (ASC) courses from the following list which can include:

A maximum of 30 units of SCNC2101 Advanced Studies Course (can be taken multiple times)

A minimum of 6 units of SCNC3101 Advanced Studies Course (can be taken multiple times)

A maximum of 18 units from completion of Advanced Studies Extensions (ASE) courses


48 units from completion of one of the following Honours specialisations:

Astronomy and Astrophysics

Biological Anthropology

Biology

Chemistry

Computer Science

Earth and Marine Science

Environment

Mathematics

Medical Research

Physics

Physics of the Earth

Population Health

Psychology

Science

Science Communication

Statistics

Students must achieve a minimum 75% weighted average mark in Science courses in each period (Summer/First Semester/Autumn and Winter/Second Semester/Spring) subsequent to the first year of study in order to continue in the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours). Students who do not achieve a minimum 75% weighted average mark will be transferred to the Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Science (Advanced) (Honours).

Students must complete 144 units and achieve a minimum 70% weighted average mark calculated from the 36 units of courses in disciplines cognate to the Honours specialisation, excluding 1000-level courses, with the highest marks and satisfy all admission requirements specified in the Honours specialisation in order to commence the Honours specialisation. Students who do not achieve the 70% weighted average mark after 144 units or do not satisfy all admission requirements specified in the Honours specialisation will be transferred to the Bachelor of Science.

Students must achieve a minimum 80% final Honours mark in order to graduate with the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours). Students who achieve a final Honours mark from 50% to 79% will graduate with the Bachelor of Science (Advanced) (Honours). Student who do not successfully complete the Honours year with a final mark of at least 50% will graduate from the Bachelor of Science.

Specialisations

Elective Study

Once you have met the program requirements of your degree, you may have enough electives to complete an additional elective majorminor or specialisation.

Study Options

Year 1 48 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Elective Course 6 units
Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course including Advanced Studies Extension 6 units Elective Course 6 units
Year 2 48 units Science 2000 level Course 6 units Science 2000 level Course 6 units Advanced Studies Course 6 units Elective Course 6 units
Science 2000 level Course 6 units Science 2000 level Course including Advanced Studies Extension 6 units Science 2000 level Course including Advanced Studies Extension 6 units Elective Course 6 units
Year 3 48 units Science 3000 level Course 6 units Science 3000 level Course 6 units Advanced Studies Course 6 units Elective Course 6 units
Science 3000 level Course 6 units Science 3000 level Course 6 units Advanced Studies Course 6 units Elective Course 6 units
Year 4 48 units 4000 level Honours Course 24 units 4000 level Honours Course 4000 level Honours Course 4000 level Honours Course
4000 level Honours Course 24 units 4000 level Honours Course 4000 level Honours Course 4000 level Honours Course

Admission Requirements

Admission to all programs is on a competitive basis. Admission to undergraduate degrees is based on meeting the ATAR requirement or an equivalent rank derived from the following qualifications and including any eligible adjustments:

- An Australian year 12 qualification or international equivalent; OR

- A completed Associate Diploma, Associate Degree, AQF Diploma, Diploma, AQF Advanced Diploma, Graduate Certificate or international equivalent; OR

- At least one standard full-time year (1.0 FTE) in a single program of degree level study at an Australian higher education institution or international equivalent; OR

- An approved tertiary preparation course unless subsequent study is undertaken.


Other requirements

A supplementary form and two referee reports are used in the selection of students and must be submitted by November 30 in the year of application. Click here to access the forms.

You must list the PhB (Hons) degree as a preference through the University Admissions Centre to be considered for admission. Interviews and school recommendations may also be used in the selection of students. Quotas may apply.


Entry requirements

Domestic School-leavers

Domestic students completing an Australian Year 12 or the IB program (November session) in Australia in 2019 apply directly to The Australian National University by submitting an Admission, Scholarships and Accommodation application here. All students will still need to meet the published entry requirements for the program they have applied for.

 In addition to meeting the published entry requirements, school leavers are required met the co-curricular or service requirement (CCS). The CCS functions as a threshold that is either met or not met, you can learn more about the CCS and check if you’ve met the CCS requirement here.

You will be directed to the appropriate application system when you select ‘Apply’.


Domestic Non-School leavers

Domestic non-school leavers (including students transferring to ANU, mature age applicants and students who are otherwise not a school-leaver) can apply to ANU via the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC).

 You will be directed to the appropriate application system when you select ‘Apply’


International applicant entry requirements

International applicants may view further information on admissions requirements at Entry Requirements for International Undergraduate Applicants.


Additional Information for applicants

More information about ATAR requirements for individual programs can be found on the ANU website.


The National Register of higher education providers is an authoritative source of information that will help you confirm your institution of choice is registered to deliver higher education in Australia.

The Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT) website allows you to do side-by-side comparisons of Australian universities, so you can find out more about the universities that interest you.


The University reserves the right to alter or discontinue its programs as required.

The admission requirements listed on this page are a guide to the entry level required for domestic applicants. Exact entry level will be set at time of offer.

ATAR:
99
QLD Band:
1
International Baccalaureate:
42

Prerequisites

There are no formal program prerequisites and many first-year science courses assume little specific knowledge. The exceptions are:

  • For many of the biology majors, chemistry is a requirement, therefore it is recommended that students have an ACT major in chemistry, or successful completion of a bridging course in chemistry, or multistrand science in NSW, or equivalent. Chemistry is essential for all later-year courses in the biological streams of biochemistry and cell biology, microbiology and immunology, molecular genetics, animal and human physiology, and some parts of botany and neuroscience. A bridging course is available in February details can be obtained through science.enquiries@anu.edu.au
  • CHEM1101: ACT major in Chemistry, or successful completion of a bridging course in chemistry, or multistrand science in NSW, or equivalent, is required. Chemistry is essential for all later-year courses in chemistry. A bridging course is available in February details can be obtained through science.enquiries@anu.edu.au
  • MATH1003: Assumed knowledge: ACT Mathematical Methods (major)/Further Mathematics/Specialist Mathematics (major)/ Specialist Methods or NSW HSC Mathematics or equivalent
  • MATH1005: ACT Mathematical Methods (major)/Further Mathematics/Specialist Mathematics (major)/ Specialist Methods or NSW HSC Mathematics or equivalent
  • MATH1013: A satisfactory pass in ACT Specialist Mathematics Major - Minor or NSW HSC Mathematics Extension 1 or equivalent. Students with a good pass in ACT Mathematical Methods or NSW HSC Mathematics or equivalent will be considered
  • MATH1115: A satisfactory pass in ACT Specialist Mathematics double major or NSW HSC Mathematics Extension 2 or equivalent. Students with excellent marks in either ACT Specialist Mathematics major-minor or NSW HSC Mathematics Extension 1 or equivalent may be permitted to enrol
  • PHYS1101: There is a corequisite of MATH1013/1115. See the entries above. There is no formal physics prerequisite but preparation is assumed and recommended. Recommended preparation is - NSW: a high standard in 2 unit physics or a multistrand science; ACT: a high standard in physics (major).

Adjustment Factors

ANU offers rank adjustments for a number of adjustment factors, including for high achievement in nationally strategic senior secondary subjects and for recognition of difficult circumstances that students face in their studies. Rank adjustments are applied to Bachelor degree applicants with an ATAR at or above 70. Points are awarded in accordance with the approved schedules, and no more than 15 points (maximum 5 subject/performance-based adjustments, maximum 10 equity-based adjustments and maximum 5 Elite Athlete adjustments) will be awarded. Subject and performance-based adjustments do not apply to programs with a minimum selection rank of 98 or higher. Visit the ANU Adjustment Factors website for further information.

Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP)

For more information see: http://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/costs-fees

Annual indicative fee for international students
$45,864.00

Scholarships

ANU offers a wide range of scholarships to students to assist with the cost of their studies.

Eligibility to apply for ANU scholarships varies depending on the specifics of the scholarship and can be categorised by the type of student you are.  Specific scholarship application process information is included in the relevant scholarship listing.

For further information see the Scholarships website.

Inspire your curious mind with the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours).

There’s no other degree like it in Australia. You’ll get to explore your interests by undertaking research as an undergraduate student, get one-on-one mentoring by leading academics… all while enjoying the camaraderie of a group of like-minded students.

The research you’ll do throughout your degree is excellent preparation for your fourth, or Honours year of your PhB. You will undertake a year-long research project under the guidance of an academic supervisor. This is where you can really indulge your passion and explore a topic in detail.

Find out more about the Bachelor of Philosophy, the degree structure, the university experience, career opportunities and student stories on our website.

Get the inside story on what it’s like to be an ANU student by visiting our student blog. 

Career Options

Graduates from ANU have been rated as Australia's most employable graduates and among the most sought after by employers worldwide.

The latest Global Employability University Ranking, published by the Times Higher Education, rated ANU as Australia's top university for getting a job for the fourth year in a row.

Employment Opportunities

Many of our graduates have used the PhB program as a pathway to completing PhDs in some of the best universities around the world, such as Cambridge, Oxford, Yale, UC Berkley and, of course, ANU.

The PhB can also provide a pathway to the Doctor of Medicine and Surgery (MChD) without having to sit the GAMSAT. Each year, 10 places are reserved in our medicine program for students who successfully graduate from the PhB program and undertake a successful interview.

See where a Bachelor of Philosophy could take you: our career wheel will help you turn your interests into a career in science.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Develop, apply, integrate and generate knowledge in educational and professional contexts:
  2. Develop and use a range of skills and methods to identify, analyse and respond to complex problems and issues;
  3. Identify and apply various research concepts, methodologies and methods
  4. Work and learn in both independent and collaborative ways with others to encompass diverse abilities and perspectives;
  5. Negotiate research projects considering their academic relevance, possible academic contributions, and ethical implications;
  6. Source and critically analyse research literature related to their topics of interest and research;
  7. Appraise concepts and arguments related to their topics of interest and research;
  8. Convey and relate professional and disciplinary information and ideas to diverse audiences in effective and appropriate ways;
  9. Develop high level project management skills as support for independent study; and
  10. Exercise personal, professional and social responsibility as a global citizen.

Inherent Requirements

Information on inherent requirements is currently not available for this program.

Other Requirements

Information on inherent requirements is currently not available for this program.

Further Information

Advanced Studies consist of individually tailored courses specifically designed to provide students with a strong base in research. Advanced Studies are available in two formats: courses that are inherently taught at a higher level and are entirely research focussed (Advanced Studies Courses, ASC); or in the form of an extension, assessed at a higher level, attached to a regular course (Advanced Studies Extension, ASE). Students must seek approval from the program and course conveners in order to enrol in Advanced Studies.

Back to the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) - Science page

Please note that if you are commencing your studies in semester 2 there may be restrictions on the courses available for enrolment. We strongly recommend that you make an appointment with an academic advisor (PhB.science.enquiries@anu.edu.au or phoning 6125 2809) to discuss your options. There will also be advisory sessions offered during the week before semester commences.

The Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) - Science or PhB is a unique degree  that allows intellectually ambitious students to explore their interests, develop their research skills and be mentored by leading academics, while enjoying the camaraderie of a group of like-minded students. The PhB degree has been offered in Science since 2003. Regardless of your main focus, there is room in the degree for you to explore other disciplines.

The four year PhB degree is designed with flexibility in mind - each PhB program is as individual as the student taking it. Each year, you will work with your mentor to tailor a program you will find stimulating and challenging, including courses from other Colleges for those who wish to pursue cross-disciplinary interests.

One quarter of the studies, in the first three years, consists of individually tailored Advanced Studies specifically designed to provide you with a strong base in research. In these courses you typically join a research team to conduct a hands-on research project under the supervision of an academic in your chosen science area. Other options include a theoretical project, for example in Mathematics, a reading course with a world-leading scientist or an external research project with CSIRO, industry or other organisations. In the fourth or Honours year of a PhB, you will undertake a research project for most of the year under the guidance of an academic supervisor.

After completion of your first year of study, the Conditions of Award Committee will determine each semester whether your level of performance is sufficient to remain in the degree program. It is possible to transfer to another undergraduate degree program and receive credit for work successfully completed in the PhB. To remain enrolled in the PhB degree, students must maintain an average mark of 75 percent in all their Science courses in each half-year-period.

To qualify for the degree the Honours year must be completed with first class honours.

Single degree

    • This degree requires 192 units
    • A maximum of 60 units of 1000 level courses
    • A minimum of 30 units 3000 or 4000 level Science courses
    • 36 units from the completion of Advanced Studies including a minimum of 18 units of Advanced Studies Courses (ASCs)
    • Other courses from Science or another ANU College (maximum non-science allowed 48 units)
    • An average of 75% in Science courses must be maintained in each half-year period to remain in the program.
    • 48 units from completion of a Science Honours research project
    • To qualify for the degree Honours must be completed with first class Honours

    About this degree

    In the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) - Science, PhB, degree you will study a total of 192 units.  Typically, you will take four courses per semester (total of 24 units) as a full time student giving you a total of 24 courses across the first three years of your degree, which is then followed by an Honours year.

    While you do not need to complete majors in this degree, the Science majors are helpful to give you an idea of possible areas you might like to focus on in your degree. In addition, you can choose up to eight elective courses  from right across ANU.  You can use these electives to try a range of courses or to take a cohesive group of courses, such as a language, philosophy or economics.

    The core of this degree is the opportunity for you to undertake research projects (known as Advanced Studies). You will probably not undertake an Advanced Studies in your first semester of first year because most PhB students like to use this semester to get used to university and find out about as many disciplines as possible. You will undertake an Advanced Studies (as an Advanced Studies Extension project most likely) in second semester of first year and then some kind of Advanced Studies in each semester of second and third year. You will have lots of help from the program convenor in helping you decide courses and showing you how to organise Advanced Studies.

    In your 4th year of study you will undertake the Honours year in a single discipline usually closely related to your main area of focus.

    Enrolment Status

    It is possible to enrol in fewer courses per semester, but it will take you longer to finish your program and get your degree. If you are an international student you must always be enrolled full-time in 24 units each semester, unless you have been approved for a reduced study load.

    When you enrol for the first time you will study ‘1000-level’ courses unless you already have some advanced levels of achievement in a subject.  These courses have ‘1’ as the first number in their course code, such as CHEM1101, MATH1013, BIOL1003 or PHYS1101.

    • You should enrol in courses for both First Semester and Second Semester.
    • You can’t study more than four courses (24 units) per semester, so normally eight for the year. (Some students choose to undertake an Advanced Studies Course research project over the summer just because they are fun, exciting and challenging – you don’t have to though.)
    • You need to enrol in courses for at least one potential Science focus.
    • You may take 1000-level courses later in your program.  But remember you can’t count more than ten 1000-level courses (60 units) towards your single degree.

    Majors and Minors

    See available majors and minors for this program

    Remember, you do not have to undertake a formal major or minor in this degree but you might like to check out the 60+ Science majors, minors and specialisations available for you to study. A list of these is available from the Bachelor of Science website: http://programsandcourses.anu.edu.au/program/Bsc.

    If you aren’t sure what you want to study for your whole degree, that’s fine. Use first year to explore lots of discipline areas and let your interests develop on the basis of this experience. The PhB Convenor and your academic mentor will ensure you are choosing something academically sensible and that will allow many paths of study in the later years of your degree.

    Because there are so many options available, you will need to take your time choosing what you want to study.

    Study Options

    Typical first year enrolment pattern for Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours):

    This is a typical study pattern for the first year of a student undertaking a Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) with a focus in courses from the College of Asia and the Pacific (CAP).

    Study Options

    Year 1 48 units CAP 1000 level Course in an Asian Language 6 units CAP 1000 level Course 6 units CAP 1000 level Course 6 units Elective Course 6 units
    CAP 1000 level Course in an Asian Language 6 units CAP 1000 level Course 6 units CAP 1000 level Course including Advanced Studies Extension 6 units Elective Course 6 units

    Typical first year enrolment pattern for Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours):

    This is a typical study pattern for the first year of a student undertaking a Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours).

    Study Options

    Year 1 48 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Elective Course 6 units
    Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course 6 units Science 1000 level Course including Advanced Studies Extension 6 units Elective Course 6 units

    Academic Advice

    For further information you can:

    Back to the top

    Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions