Postgraduate coursework

Graduate Diploma of Psychology (Pre-Practice)

Further your psychology studies with a Graduate Diploma of Psychology (Pre-Practice) at Deakin. Find out more about the opportunities on offer here.

Domestic student information

Key facts


2 years full-time or part-time equivalent

Course information

Complete the equivalent of a psychology undergraduate and Honours degree in two years full-time instead of four.

If you are interested in a career in psychology and you have already completed an undergraduate degree in another field, this course gets you on the fast track towards your dream job.

In year one, you will complete the equivalent of a three-year psychology sequence. This includes units in social psychology, cognition, research methods, development, personality, psychopathology and neuropsychology, giving a broad understanding of psychology.

In year two, you will undertake the Honours program. You will also undertake coursework designed to support your skills in research.

Once you graduate from this course, you can apply for provisional registration as a psychologist and to pursue entry into postgraduate courses.

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Course structure

To complete the Graduate Diploma of Psychology (Pre-Practice) students must attain 16 credit points. All units in the course are core (these are compulsory) and must be completed; there are no elective units.

Students need to achieve an average grade of 60 across all year one units of the degree to gain entry into year 2.

Core units

Year 1 - Trimester 1

  • Research Methods in Psychology A HPS771
  • The Human Mind HPS773
  • Human Social Behaviour HPS774
  • Brain, Biology and Behaviour HPS775
  • Year 1 - Trimester 2

  • Child and Adolescent Development HPS772
  • Research Methods in Psychology B HPS781
  • Psychopathology HPS788
  • Personality HPS791
  • Students undertaking the final year of the degree part-time must complete the coursework units before the thesis units HPY720 and HPY721 (see Table below for a list of units).

    Year 2 - Trimester 1

  • Psychological Assessment HPS715
  • Research Methods in Psychology C HPS742
  • Research Project A HPY720
  • Year 2 - Trimester 2

  • Case Management and Professional Issues HPY710
  • Research Methods in Psychology D HPY712
  • Research Project B HPY721
  • Part time students wising to deviate from the recommended structure should consult the course director.

    Key information

    Award granted
    Graduate Diploma of Psychology (Pre-Practice)
    2018 course information
    Deakin code
    Postgraduate (Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma)
    Approval status
    This course is approved by the University under the Higher Education Standards Framework.
    Australian Quality Framework (AQF) recognition
    The award conferred upon completion is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework at Level 8.

    Campuses by intake

    Campus availability varies per trimester. This means that a course offered in Trimester 1 may not be offered in the same location for Trimester 2 or 3. Read more to learn where this course will be offered throughout the year.

    Trimester 1 - March

    • Start date: March
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne)
      • Waurn Ponds (Geelong)^
      • Cloud Campus

    Trimester 2 - July

    • Start date: July
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne)
      • Waurn Ponds (Geelong)^
      • Cloud Campus

    Trimester 3 - November

    • Start date: November
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne)
      • Waurn Ponds (Geelong)^
      • Cloud Campus

    ^Students enrol at Waurn Ponds (Geelong), however the second year of the course is taught at Waterfront (Geelong). Students commencing in Trimester 2 or Trimester 3 must start their second year in Trimester 1.

    Additional course information

    The current requirements for registration as a provisional psychologist include the completion of four years of academic study of psychology that is recognised by the Psychology Board of Australia. The academic program usually consists of an approved undergraduate psychology sequence followed by an approved fourth-year of study, such as Deakin’s Graduate Diploma of Psychology or honours in psychology.

    Following successful completion of an approved fourth-year of psychology study, you may apply for provisional registration with the Psychology Board of Australia and associate membership of the Australian Psychological Society (APS). In order to gain full registration, provisional psychologists must then complete either two years of supervised practice, or a minimum two years of further study, which may include: Master of Psychology, Doctor of Psychology or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) (with supervised practice completed outside the degree).

    Course duration - additional information

    Course duration may be affected by delays in completing course requirements, such as accessing or completing work placements.


    As a student in the Faculty of Health you can expect to participate in a range of teaching activities each week. This could include classes, seminars, practicals and online interaction. You can refer to the individual unit details in the course structure for more information. You will also need to study and complete assessment tasks in your own time.

    Entry requirements

    Entry information

    To be eligible for admission into this new course, applicants will need to:

    1. Have a recognised Level 7 undergraduate degree qualification (from a discipline other than psychology).

    2. Have completed the two pre-requisite first year units HPS111 and HPS121 (or equivalent from another professionally accredited psychology program). These two units can be undertaken as single non award study at Deakin in all three trimesters. Information about applying for single unit study is available at

    Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories.

    In all categories of admission, selection is based primarily on academic merit as indicated by an applicant's previous academic record.

    For more information on the Admission Criteria and Selection Policy visit the Deakin Policy Library.

    Fees and scholarships

    Fee information

    Estimated tuition fee - full-fee paying place
    $25,712 for 1 yr full-time* - Full-fee paying place
    Learn more about fees and your options for paying.
    Estimated tuition fee - (CSP)
    Not applicable

    The available fee places for this course are detailed above.

    Tuition fees are determined by your enrolment:

    • If you are offered a full fee paying place, your tuition fees are calculated based on your course.
    • If you are offered a Commonwealth supported place, your tuition fees are calculated depending on the units you choose. Not all courses at Deakin have Commonwealth supported places available.

    The 'Estimated tuition fee' is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students completing the first year of this course. The cost will vary depending on the units you choose, your study load, the length of your course and any approved Credit for Prior Learning.

    * One year full-time study load is typically represented by eight credit points of study. Each unit you enrol in has a credit point value. The 'Estimated tuition fee' is calculated by adding together 8 credit points of a typical combination of units for your course.

    You can find the credit point value of each unit under the Unit Description by searching for the unit in the Handbook.

    Learn more about fees and available payment options.

    Scholarship options

    A Deakin scholarship might change your life. If you've got something special to offer Deakin – or you just need the financial help to get you here – we may have a scholarship opportunity for you.

    Search or browse through our scholarships

    Postgraduate bursary

    If you’re a Deakin alumni commencing a postgraduate award course, you may be eligible to receive a 15% reduction per unit on your enrolment fees. Your spouse and members of your immediate family may also be eligible to apply for this bursary.

    Learn more about Deakin’s 15% postgraduate bursary

    Course learning outcomes

    Deakin's graduate learning outcomes describe the knowledge and capabilities graduates can demonstrate at the completion of their course. These outcomes mean that regardless of the Deakin course you undertake, you can rest assured your degree will teach you the skills and professional attributes that employers value. They'll set you up to learn and work effectively in the future.

    Graduate Learning Outcomes

    Course Learning Outcomes

    Discipline Specific knowledge and capabilities

    Achieve a deep conceptual understanding of the major ideas, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings and historical trends in the core topics of psychology.


    Communicate effectively in a variety of formats and in a variety of contexts including with diverse ethnic and cultural partners and within teams.

    Digital Literacy

    Be able to understand, apply and evaluate basic research methods in psychology including research design, data analysis and interpretation and the appropriate use of technologies.

    Critical thinking

    Respect and use critical and creative thinking, sceptical inquiry, and the scientific approach to solve problems related to behaviour and metal processes. 

    Understand and apply psychological principles to personal, social and organisational issues.

    Problem Solving

    Respect and use critical and creative thinking, sceptical inquiry and the scientific approach to solve problems related to behaviour and mental processes.


    Understand and appreciate the core values of psychology (i.e. value empirical evidence; tolerate ambiguity during the search for a greater understanding of behaviour and knowledge structures ;act ethically and professionally; understand the complexity of sociocultural and international diversity and reflect other values that are the underpinning of psychology as a discipline).


    Communicate effectively in a variety of formats and in a variety of contexts including with diverse ethnic and cultural partners and within teams.

    Global Citizenship

    Demonstrate, report and apply ethical principles to understand how to work productively in the field of psychology within diverse social, cultural and environmental contexts by collaborating and communicating in a self-reflective and culturally sensitive manner.


    Application information

    How to apply

    Apply direct to Deakin

    Applications can be made directly to the University through the Applicant Portal if you are only applying for one course. For information on the application process and closing dates, see the how to apply web page. Please note that closing dates may vary for individual courses.

    Apply through Deakin

    Need more information on how to apply?

    For more information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply webpage. If you're still having problems, please contact us for assistance.

    Register your interest to study at Deakin

    Please complete the Register your interest form to receive further information about our direct application opportunities.

    Entry pathways

    The only means of entry into the course is when students have already successfully completed an undergraduate degree (Level 7) in a discipline other than psychology, from a recognised tertiary institution within the last ten years. Individual applications for specific credit for prior learning will be considered on an individual basis. Upon graduation, while students are eligible to apply for further study in psychology, they will not be able to automatically articulate into higher-level psychology courses.

    Credit for prior learning

    The University aims to provide students with as much credit as possible for approved prior study or informal learning which exceeds the normal entrance requirements for the course and is within the constraints of the course regulations. Students are required to complete a minimum of one-third of the course at Deakin University, or four credit points, whichever is the greater. In the case of certificates, including graduate certificates, a minimum of two credit points within the course must be completed at Deakin.

    Faculty contact information

    Health - Student and Academic Services
    Tel 03 9251 7777

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