The Open Foundation pathway program provides you with a range of course options to facilitate your entry into an undergraduate degree.

Open Foundation

What's in the program?

To successfully complete Open Foundation and qualify for university entrance you must complete 40 units of study within one calendar year. The academic year consists of two semesters. We recommend you review the university semester dates before enrolling so that you can be certain you can commit to the Open Foundation program.

Open Foundation courses are designed to develop skills up to university standard by the end of semester two and you must demonstrate that you are able to successfully complete two courses concurrently at the tertiary preparation level before you can be considered for university entry.

If you know which undergraduate degree you would like to study, take a look at the Open Foundation recommended courses as it will guide you in choosing a study program that best prepares you for your undergraduate degree.

Our aim is to provide the best possible support throughout your Open Foundation studies. We appreciate that studying at university requires time and energy and that flexibility is important when balancing life and study. With this in mind, we have developed some program alternatives that allow you to choose a delivery method that suits your lifestyle.

If you're uncertain about what degree program you'd like to study or where it might lead you, the University's Careers Service can help with information about the jobs that are available to graduates and the best degrees and courses to help you get there.

The on-campus part-time Open Foundation program is a 40 unit program conducted over the course of a full academic year.

The program has been designed so that students with work and family commitments can choose between day or night classes (or a combination of both) each week.

Throughout the program you will need to attend classes for 6 hours per week, spread across 1-2 weekdays. During lectures your course lecturers will present and explain the course content for that week. During tutorials you will take part in further discussion and have the opportunity to re-visit topics you've had trouble with.

To successfully complete the program, you will need to allocate a further 10-14 hours per week for preparation, assignments and out-of-class study.

The table below outlines the Part-time Open Foundation program structure for semester one. Choose 20 units from these courses. For course descriptions, and timetables click on the course code.

Course Code
Course Name
Campus
Units
EPHUMA158Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies 1Callaghan only10
EPHUMA131Australian History 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPMANC120Business Organisation and Management 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA138Classical Studies 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPGEOS141Earth Science 1Callaghan only10
EPBIOL140Environmental Studies 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPMATH153Extension Mathematics 1
(not to count with EPMATH134 or EPMATH135)
Callaghan only10
EPCHEM137Foundation Concepts for Chemistry and the Life Sciences (not to count with EPHLTH170)Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPMATH135Intermediate Mathematics 1
(not to count with EPMATH134 or EPMATH153)
Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPMATH134Introductory Mathematics 1
(Not to count with EPMATH135 or EPMATH153)
Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA144Literature and Film 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA150Philosophy 1Callaghan only10
EPPHYS152Physics 1Callaghan only10
EPHLTH170Science for Nursing and Midwifery 1
(not to count with EPCHEM137)
Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA154Social Enquiry 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA147Studies in Law 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA149The Study of Language 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPARTS156Visual Art 1Callaghan/Ourimbah10

The table below outlines the Part-time Open Foundation program structure for semester two. Choose 20 units from these courses. For course descriptions, and timetables click on the course code.

Course Code
Course Name
Campus
Units
EPHUMA258Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies 2Callaghan only10
EPHUMA231Australian History 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPMANC220Business Organisation and Management 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPCHEM237ChemistryCallaghan only10
EPHUMA238Classical Studies 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPGEOS241Earth Science 2Callaghan only10
EPBIOL240Environmental Studies 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPMATH253Extension Mathematics 2
(not to count with EPMATH234 or EPMATH235)
Callaghan only10
EPMATH235Intermediate Mathematics 2
(not to count with EPMATH234 or EPMATH253)
Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPBIOL259Introduction to the Life Sciences
(not to count with EPHLTH270)
Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPMATH234Introductory Mathematics 2
(not to count with EPMATH235 or EPMATH253)
Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA244Literature and Film 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA250Philosophy 2Callaghan only10
EPPHYS252Physics 2Callaghan only10
EPHLTH270Science for Nursing and Midwifery 2
(not to count with EPBIOL259)
Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA254Social Enquiry 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA247Studies in Law 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPHUMA249The Study of Language 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10
EPARTS256Visual Art 2Callaghan/Ourimbah10

The Intensive Open Foundation program is a full-time pathway into university study, and as such, it is recommended for people who are not working or who only work part-time. Open Foundation is offered at both the Newcastle (Callaghan) campus and the Central Coast (Ourimbah) campus. All classes are held during the day.

It is a 40 unit program conducted in semester two each year, during which you will study two 20 unit subjects. You will attend class for 12 hours per week and to successfully complete the program you will need to allocate a further 20 hours per week for preparation, assignments and out-of-class study.

Exams take place during the University's formal examination period in November. Assessment is made up of 50% progressive assessment (assignments, essays and class tests) and 50% final exams. You will need to pass both 20 unit courses to pass the program.

The table below summarises the key features of the Intensive Open Foundation program. Don't forget that you can attend an information session for more detail about the program.

The table below outlines the Intensive (full-time) Open Foundation program structure offered in semester two Choose 20 units from these courses. For course descriptions, and timetables click on the course code.

Course CodeCourse NameCampus AvailableUnit
EPHUMA303Australian HistoryCallaghan/Ourimbah20
EPMANC320Business Organisation and ManagementCallaghan/Ourimbah20
EPHUMA304Classical StudiesCallaghan/Ourimbah20
EPARTS191
and
EPARTS192
Design in Society

Graphic Design Fundamentals
Callaghan only10

10
EPGEOS301Earth ScienceCallaghan only20
EPBIOL340Environmental StudiesCallaghan/Ourimbah20
EPMATH309Extension Mathematics
(not to count with EPMATH302 or EPMATH303)
Callaghan only20
EPMATH302Intermediate Mathematics
(not to count with with EPMATH303 or EPMATH309)
Callaghan/Ourimbah20
EPCHEM314Introduction to Chemistry and the Life Sciences
(not to count with EPHLTH370)
Callaghan/Ourimbah20
EPMATH303Introductory Mathematics
(not to count with EPMATH302 or EPMATH309)
Callaghan/Ourimbah20
EPHUMA306Literature and FilmCallaghan/Ourimbah20
EPHUMA307PhilosophyCallaghan only20
EPPHYS308PhysicsCallaghan only20
EPHLTH370Science for Nursing and Midwifery
(not to count with EPCHEM314)
Callaghan/Ourimbah20
EPHUMA310Social EnquiryCallaghan/Ourimbah20
EPHUMA311The Study of LanguageCallaghan/Ourimbah20

Learning online is usually more challenging than face-to-face study, and can take more time on a weekly basis. Most of your learning takes place through our online learning management system, Blackboard. You will be expected to visit Blackboard at least three times a week to access online course notes, participate in regular online discussions, tasks and other activities, and submit assignments online. You will also have to do a lot of work offline, preparing assessments and doing independent research and practise exercises.

To successfully complete the online program, students need to:

  • be able to work independently, without the benefit of weekly face-to-face classes with a lecturer or tutor,
  • be highly motivated and committed,
  • have sufficient time to devote approximately 20 hours per week  to reading, summarising, practising, researching and writing, and
  • have regular access to a computer and the internet

Have a look at this example schedule of one semester of online study. There will be regular deadlines to meet and weekly online tutorials to attend.

During the first week of your Open Foundation Online courses, Week Zero, we will guide all students through how to access and use the online learning environment. So don't worry - there will be plenty of help available if you aren't confident with your computer skills.

If you are not sure whether online study is for you, email the Online Support Coordinator for advice before applying to the program.

What if I don't have access to a computer or the Internet?

If you would like to complete Open Foundation online but do not have regular access to a computer or a reliable internet connection, it is essential that you email the Online Support Coordinator before you apply (or if your circumstances change after you apply). We still want to give you the opportunity to complete Open Foundation, and will endeavour to make special arrangements for you if you are in this situation so that you can still undertake the program.

Face-to-face components

Even though Open Foundation Online is an online program, there are opportunities to meet and take classes with your Lecturers, Study Advisers, and fellow students face-to-face. While optional, these are highly recommended. Students who attend tend to do better in their assessments and final exams. There are two types of face-to-face events which we encourage you to attend:

  • Face2Face Days, with your course Lecturers at the Callaghan Campus in Newcastle, and
  •  Face2Face Evenings, with Study Advisers in various locations around NSW

Similar to on-campus Open Foundation, courses in Open Foundation Online involve compulsory end-of-semester exams worth 50% of your overall mark in each course. These exams are not online. They are arranged in major cities and towns in Australia within a two hour drive of where you live. Online students must be a resident in Australia for the duration of their studies and can not sit exams in overseas locations.

When does Open Foundation Online start?

Commencing Open Foundation Online students should keep the following two dates in mind and, if possible, plan to begin their studies on 3 February, 2014.

Monday 3 February 2014: This is the start date of a three-week online UoN Prep Bridging course called Academic Survival Skills Online. It is strongly recommended that Open Foundation Online students prepare for their studies by completing this course. It is designed to introduce you to the academic skills required at university. Enrolment instructions will become available here in early December. If you are unable to commence Academic Survival Skills Online on 3 February, please contact the Online Support Coordinator for advice.

Monday 24 February 2014: After you have completed Academic Survival Skills Online, you will be ready to begin your courses. Open Foundation Online courses commencein Week Zero on 24 February. During Week Zero you will need to log in to Blackboard for 1-2 hours each day to complete daily information and activities designed to guide you in to your course materials. Your letter of offer will include instructions about logging in to Blackboard in Week Zero. If you are unable to commence Week Zero on 24 February, please contact the Online Support Coordinator for advice.

SEMESTER ONE COURSES

Choose 20 units from these courses. For course descriptions click on the course code.

Course Code
Course Name
Units
EPHUMA131Australian History 110
EPMANC120Business Organisation and Management 110
EPGEOS141Earth Science 110
EPCHEM137Foundation Concepts for Chemistry and the Life Sciences10
EPMATH134Introductory Mathematics 110
EPHUMA147Studies in Law 110
EPHUMA149The Study of Language 110
SEMESTER TWO COURSES

Choose 20 units from these courses, i.e. part 2 of the pair of courses studied in semester 1. For course descriptions click on the course code.

Course Code
Course Name
Units
EPHUMA231Australian History 210
EPMANC220Business Organisation and Management 210
EPGEOS241Earth Science 210
EPMATH234Introductory Mathematics 210
EPBIOL259Introduction to the Life Sciences10
EPHUMA247Studies in Law 210
EPHUMA249The Study of Language 210

Program Assessment

In most of the Open Foundation courses, 50% of your final mark is made up of progressive assessments during the semester and 50% of your final mark comes from an end-of-semester exam.

Note: In the part-time study program you will take part one of two courses in semester one and part two of those same courses in semester two.

Progressive Assessment

Assessments will be very similar to those in university degree programs. They might include completing written assignments such as essays, oral presentations, in-class or online quizzes, and mid-semester exams.

End-of-semester exams

The end-of-semester exam is a formal examination held during June in semester one and November in semester two. These examinations are compulsory and you must sit them in order to pass your courses. You must allocate two days for exams in each exam period (this may require planning for leave from work commitments or arranging child care).

The final exam schedule, which gives the dates of the exams for your courses, is usually provided around six weeks before each exam period. This is why you need to keep the entire examination period free in each semester.

Online students should remember that their end-of-semester exams are not online. They will be scheduled in major cities and towns within two hours drive of your home residence. Online students cannot sit exams overseas.