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Application to Enrolment

Higher Education Academic Credit Transfer Policy

Policy Code: LT2030


This policy governs the granting and rescinding of credit towards Federation University Australia’s Higher Education awards on the basis of prior formal learning, through the credit transfer process.

Credit can accelerate student progress, completion and mobility, however, the integrity of Federation University awards is paramount and credit will not be granted if it would impair the integrity of the award, or reduce a student’s likelihood of success in the program.


This policy applies to higher education students in undergraduate and postgraduate (coursework) programs at Federation University. This policy is for recognition of formal prior coursework learning.

This policy applies to credit arrangements made on the basis of:

  • Formal credit agreements within Federation University
  • Formal credit agreements between Federation University and other tertiary institutions
  • Formal agreements between Federation University and industry partners; and
  • Credit granted by Federation University in response to applications from individual students

This policy does not apply to students seeking credit transfer for higher degrees by research (refer HDR Candidate Selection Policy); nor VET students (VET Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer Assessment Policy). It does not apply to applications for shorter form credentials, or Workplace Recognition of Prior Learning relating to HE programs, which are not eligible for credit.

Legislative Context

  • Federation University Act 2010
  • Statute 2.2 - Academic Board
  • Statute 5.1 - Academic Awards and Courses
  • Statute 5.2 – Entry Quotas, Admissions and Enrolment
  • Regulation 5.2 – Entry Quotas, Admissions and Enrolment
  • Statute 5.6 - Admission to and Granting of Academic Awards
  • Regulation 5.6 – Admission to and Granting of Academic Awards
  • Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)
  • Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency (TEQSA) Threshold Standards 2015


A complete list of definitions relevant to this policy is contained within the Application to Enrolment Policy

Policy Statement

  1. AQF Pathways Policy Principles

    1. Pathways for credit will be available into and between qualifications.
    2. Credit pathways may be horizontal across qualifications with outcomes at the same AQF level as well as vertical between qualifications with outcomes at different AQF levels.
    3. Such pathways will be clearly publicised on Course Finder.
    4. Credit is available for courses/subjects.
    5. Decisions regarding applications for credit will be fair, transparent and evidence-based.
    6. Credit can facilitate student progress, completion and mobility however, the granting of credit should not negatively impact the integrity of the award or reduce a student’s likelihood of success in the program.
  2. Credit Transfer and Admission
    1. The approval of credit does not guarantee admission to any Federation University program and needs to be applied for at the time of application.
  3.  Types of Credit
    1. In order to protect the integrity of awards and assessment, formal credit is only available for a course/subject as a whole, not parts thereof.
    2. Credit may be given in the form of:
      1. Block credit– granted for whole stages or years of a program, such as semester, year or credit point equivalent.
      2. Specified credit– granted for a course/subject deemed to be similar to that for which credit is sought.
      3. Unspecified credit – granted in the form of credit points where there is not an equivalent subject.
  4. Eligibility for credit
    1. A student is eligible for credit for learning that is:
      1. Relevant
      2. Equivalent (at least 80%) to current knowledge and/or practices; and
      3. Satisfies the current learning or competency outcomes of the course/subject
    2. Credit is only available for learning that is deemed current by the credit assessor and will not be granted for study completed more than 10 years before the application for credit is submitted. A shorter time limit for availability of credit may be set by the School and approved by the Higher Education Curriculum Committee (HECC) in disciplines where knowledge changes more rapidly and may also be shorter in post-graduate qualifications.
    3. Credit is only available towards course/subjects that meet the requirements of the approved program structure.
    4. Credit is available towards a Federation University award regardless of the location at which the program is taught.
    5. When considering overseas qualifications, the awarding of credit must be guided by the Program Coordinator in the relevant School, who may consult with International Office credits for advice. Credit will be granted at the appropriate AQF level.
    6. Learning will be measured against the learning or skills outcomes of the course/subjects for which the student has applied for credit
    7. Decisions regarding credit applications will be:
      1. Timely
      2. Evidence-based and transparent
      3. Fair and consistent
      4. Academically defensible
      5. Will take into account the student’s ability to successfully meet the learning outcomes of the qualification
    8. Credit will not be granted if it impinges upon the integrity of the award and requirements of the relevant discipline; and
    9. Students can only seek credit transfer for courses/subjects they have successfully completed (credit transfer is not dependent on the grades achieved in the formal study). Credit will not be granted for:
      1. A failed course/subject
      2. A conceded/School pass or equivalent
      3. Credit awarded towards a previous course/subject on the basis of credit transfer
      4. Shorter form credentials applications
      5. Workplace recognition of prior learning (RPL)
    10. In the following circumstances students will be eligible for credit transfer on the basis of a course for which credit has already been granted
      1. Program transfers (internal within Federation University and external from other institutions)
      2. Formal credit agreements
      3. Where a student discontinues a program without completing or graduating and instead enrols into another Federation University program that contains the same courses/subjects with the same course/subject codes as those for which the student has already received credit
      4. Where block credit is awarded on the basis of completed qualification as a whole
    11. Students must apply for credit at the same time that they apply for admission to a program. NOTE: Students who are awaiting course/unit grades to be finalised must supply evidence of this, including any assessment results received for those pending courses/units, with their application. Finalised results from those pending courses/units must then be provided to within five working days of receiving the finalised results. Failure to provide all relevant qualifications held at the time of application for which credit would be eligible may constitute a material omission and may result in withdrawal of the offer.
    12. Credit applications (including all documentation specified on the application form) must be submitted before the end of Week 2, enabling processing before census date in order to avoid:
      1. incurring financial liability for subjects/courses enrolled in for which credit is subsequently received and from which the student wishes to drop their subject/course enrolment, noting that students are liable for all fees associated with their course enrolments after the relevant census date.
      2. impacting a student’s study plan/program duration, noting that students are unable to enrol in new subjects/courses after Week 2. This may impact on study load and on academic progression, where there are pre-requisite and co-requisite progression requirements. This is particularly important for international students where maintenance of load and visa end date conditions apply.
    13. The University may, in some instances, request additional information from the student to supplement that specified on the application form. Failure to supply this additional information within the timeframe requested in writing by the University may adversely impact the progress of the credit application, including, but not limited to, the application being considered to have been submitted after week 2 of semester and the consequences outlined in xii. may apply.
    14. Once a student is enrolled in a Federation University program, they must obtain prior approval in writing from the relevant Dean (or equivalent) to enrol in courses/subjects offered by another institution in order to receive credit towards their Federation University program. In the absence of such approval, credit may be withheld.
  5. Articulation agreements and credit agreements
    1. The University may enter into articulation agreements and credit agreements with other tertiary institutions and with industry partners. Articulation agreements may include agreements to provide students with entry into and/or credit towards a program. To this extent, articulation agreements are considered credit agreements and the provisions of this policy governing credit agreements apply.
    2. A credit agreement may be made within Federation University. Such agreements are only valid if approved through the relevant Board/Committee and are valid for the period of the contract/agreement and then reviewed.
    3. A credit agreement must include terms establishing the following aspects of the agreement:
      1. The programs and courses/subjects between which credit is available
      2. Definitions of student eligibility for credit pursuant to the agreement
      3. The amount of credit and the nature of credit available pursuant to the agreement
    4. A domestic credit agreement may be made between Federation University and another Australian tertiary institution that issues AQF qualifications. Such agreements are only valid if approved by the relevant Board/Committee.
    5. An international credit agreement may be made between Federation University and an overseas tertiary institution. Credit will be offered at the appropriate and equivalent AQF level (as determined by the FedUni endorsed assessor of overseas qualifications). Such agreements are only valid if approved by the relevant Board/Committee, and are in accordance with the articulation agreement with the institutional partner.
    6. When negotiating credit agreements with other organisations, the University will consider whether the following aspects of programs involved in the credit agreement are comparable and equivalent:
      1. The learning outcomes of the qualification
      2. The volume of learning
      3. The AQF level
      4. The program of study and the content of the program
      5. Learning and assessment approaches
    7. All credit agreements with other institutions are valid only for the duration of the contract / agreement and are then reviewed to ensure the ongoing alignment of curriculum/learning outcomes; or state the process whereby the institution will notify Federation University of changes to programs/courses/subjects for which credit is to be available.
    8. Eligibility for credit towards a program on the basis of an articulation agreement does not guarantee entry into the program.
    9. Students entering a Federation University program on the basis of an articulation agreement may be required to complete prerequisite course/subjects where their enrolment in the previous program has not included content equivalent to these prerequisite courses/subjects.
  6. Register of Credit
    1. The University will maintain a public register of credit granted, which is the credit precedence system. Information is entered and updated into the credit precedence system after each HECC meeting.
  7. Restrictions on Credit Transfer
    1. In order to preserve the integrity of the University’s awards, learning outcomes and graduate attributes, no student shall be exempted from passing assessments from more than 66% of the program, but must achieve a minimum number of credit points in their program through study in the program.
    2. These requirements do not apply where a Federation University student:
      1. Transfers internally to another Federation University program without completing or graduating from the original program.
      2. Is part of a cohort of students transferred into a new program through a program transfer.
      3. Is re-admitted to a program or closely related program following a lapsed enrolment.
    3. The University may deny credit towards the final courses/subjects in a program where these courses/subjects are considered to be the culmination of the program and are essential to the student’s achievements of the award capabilities or learning outcomes.
    4. Requests to rescind credit will not be accepted after the commencement of the last semester of enrolment. Requests for the rescission of credit should be identified as early as possible to allow time for review, approval and adjustments to study planning and should be received prior to the end of the first semester of enrolment.  Rescission will only be approved for legitimate academic reasons such as, but not limited to, the following:
      1. The course(s)/subject(s) are no longer required to meet program/accreditation requirements.
      2. The granting of credit will impact on the student’s ability to complete core program requirements.
      3. The student’s study plans have changed.
  8. Student Responsibilities
    1. Students are responsible for understanding the implications that the granting of credit will have on their visa and/or professional accreditation.
  9. Impact of credit upon grade point average
    1. A student’s grade point average (GPA) is calculated by results specific to the Federation University program enrolled in, and accordingly credits granted from other institutions and/or other Federation University programs, are not included in the GPA calculation.
  10. Appeal and Review
    1. A student may appeal a credit decision according to the process and grounds set out in the Student Appeal Procedure.
  11. Maintaining Quality of Credit Assessments and Agreements
    1. Credit assessments (including precedents), articulation, credit transfer and block credit transfer arrangements will be reported by School Boards to the HECC. Where a partner institution in a block credit transfer arrangement, or an award for which articulation, credit transfer or block credit is given, changes the curriculum substantially, the block credit transfer arrangement will be reviewed as soon as is practicable. At the latest, it will be reviewed within three months by at least one other academic within the discipline responsible for the course or a cognate area. School Boards will annually review these arrangements and report any variations to HECC.
    2. Academic judgment is required for assessing credit. Credit assessments are reviewed and assessed by Program Coordinators to preserve the integrity of the programs and meet legislative requirements relating to learning outcomes.
  12. Exceptions
    1. Applications for further credit received after the second week of teaching has commenced will only be considered under exceptional circumstances whereby the University accepts that there is a reasonable explanation for the student's failure to request credit before enrolment. The University includes information about students’ entitlement to credit and how/when to apply in its program information as well as its policies and procedures. It will therefore not accept a student’s unawareness of their right to apply for credit as an exceptional circumstance. Personal circumstances that arise are not grounds for exceptional circumstances and are dealt with in other policies and procedures.  Exceptional circumstances must involve the acquisition of formal recognised learning that was acquired post-application. Late applications must contain a detailed statement from the student outlining, with evidence, the new information.  Late applications require consideration for approval from the relevant School Board which then forwards a formal recommendation for approval by the Higher Education Curriculum Committee. Any decisions of the Higher Education Curriculum Committee approving exceptions must be reported to Academic Board for noting.
  13. Oversight and Investigation
    1. This Higher Education Academic Credit Transfer Policy overarches the Higher Education Academic Credit Transfer Procedure and Program Credit Application for International Students Procedure. Credit transfer matters requiring investigation relating to this suite of documents should be referred to the Chair, Academic Board.


  • Academic Board as Approval Authority is responsible for monitoring the implementation, outcomes and scheduled review of this policy and its accompanying procedure.
  • Chair, Academic Board as Policy Sponsor is responsible for maintaining the content of this policy as delegated by Academic Board.


This policy will be communicated throughout the University via:

  1. An Announcement Notice under ‘FedNews’ website and through the University Policy - ‘Recently Approved Documents’ webpage to alert the University-wide community of the approved Policy;
  2. Inclusion on the University Policy, Procedure and Forms website; and
  3. Distribution of e-mails to Head of School / Head of Department / University staff as appropriate


This policy will be implemented throughout the University via:

  1. Distribution of e-mails to Head of School / Head of Department / University staff as appropriate.
  2. Updating business process documentation.
  3. Training sessions and/or coaching of affected staff as required.