Associate Degree of Arts

Undergraduate degree

Study the Associate Degree of Arts and on successful completion you'll be offered guaranteed entry into the Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Criminology with course credit.

Domestic student information

Graduate with a pathway into select Deakin degrees

Top 1% of universities worldwide*

Be supported by dedicated teaching staff

Key facts


2 years full-time or part-time equivalent

Key dates

Direct applications to Deakin for Trimester 2 2020 close 10 July 2020
Direct applications to Deakin for Trimester 3 2020 close 1 November 2020

Current Deakin Students

To access your official course details for the year you started your degree, please visit the handbook

Course information

University can be a challenge, which is why we’ve designed a course that offers you a supported learning environment and a guaranteed pathway into Deakin's Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Criminology. The Associate Degree of Arts teaches you the learning skills you need to be successful at university, including communication, digital literacy, critical thinking and teamwork skills. From your first trimester, you’ll also complete units from your target degree (depending on which stream you choose). 

Are you interested in studying at university but not sure you meet the entry requirements for a bachelor degree? 

Deakin’s Associate Degree of Arts is the perfect stepping stone to university study. You’ll benefit from supported entry into tertiary study, while building your confidence and skills to complete your target degree.

Choose the general or criminology stream and learn how to navigate university in a supportive learning environment. You’ll experience smaller class sizes with world-class teachers in our state-of-the-art facilities, and get a taste of what it takes to become a successful university student. In addition to foundation units, you can follow your passions by choosing from a range of electives including:

  • advertising
  • anthropology
  • children’s literature
  • creative writing
  • design
  • history
  • international relations
  • journalism
  • media studies
  • public relations
  • sociology
  • visual arts.

If you’re choosing the criminology stream, you’ll learn the core theories and knowledge around crime, as well as having the opportunity to select a range of electives to complement your studies.

From day one you’ll be a part of the Deakin community and campus atmosphere. Studying an associate degree prepares you to successfully complete further university study.

Read More

Course structure

To qualify for the Associate Degree of Arts students will be required to complete 16 credit points of study, comprising:

  • 4 credit points of foundation units
  • 12 credit points of units taken from the General stream or the Criminology stream
  • a maximum of 10 credit points at level 1
  • Academic Integrity AAI018
  • Academic Integrity (0-credit-point compulsory unit)


Foundation units


General or Criminology units


Total units

Foundation units

  • Communication Skills for Study and Work EAD110
  • Digital Literacy: Finding, Evaluating and Interpreting Information EAD111
  • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: Using Analysis to Develop Solutions EAD112
  • Teamwork: Working Constructively with Others EAD113
  • Criminology stream

  • Introducing Crime and Criminology ACR101
  • Introducing Crime and Criminal Justice ACR102
  • Issues in Criminal Justice ACR201
  • Criminology Theory ACR202
  • Crime, Victims and Justice ACR203
  • Crime, Media and Justice ACR204
  • Plus 6 electives at level 1 or 2 *

    Maximum of 10 credit points at level 1

    * Electives may be taken inside or outside the Faculty of Arts and Education. Electives in year 1 are recommended to be level 1 only.

    General stream

    Major Sequence areas to be chosen from the Bachelor of Arts (A300). Please read the A300 course entry carefully for details of which major sequences are available at each campus location.

    2 units from a first major sequence at level 1

    2 units from a second major sequence at level 1

    2 units from first major sequence at level 2

    2 units from second major sequence at level 2

    2 additional units from either the first or second major at level 2

    2 electives at level 1 or 2 *

    Maximum of 10 credit points at level 1

    * Electives may be taken from inside or outside the Faculty of Arts and Education. Electives in year 1 are recommended to be level 1 only.

    Key information

    Award granted

    Associate Degree of Arts


    2020 course information

    Deakin code
    Approval status
    This course is approved by the University under the Higher Education Standards Framework.
    Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) recognition
    The award conferred upon completion is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework at Level 6.

    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)

    Trimester 2 - July

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

    Trimester 3 - November

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

    Deakin splits the academic year into three terms, known as trimesters. Most students usually undertake two trimesters each year (March-June, July-November).

    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students can apply directly through the Institute of Koorie Education

    Additional course information

    Course duration - additional information

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

    Need help?

    Ask a question about studying at Deakin

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    Entry requirements

    Entry information

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

    All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements

    Please note that meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee selection, which is based on merit, likelihood of success and availability of places in the course.

    For more information on the Admission Criteria and Selection (Higher Education Courses) Policy visit the Deakin Policy Library

    Entry will be based on performance in:

    • a Senior Secondary Certificate of Education OR
    • a Certificate III OR
    • other evidence of academic capability judged to be equivalent, including completion of or enrolment in a Vocational Education and Training course and/or relevant work or life experience

    All Applicants must prepare the following for your application:

    • Personal statement of approximately 500 words including your name, highest qualification and outlining your motivation to study and future aspirations
    • Brief resume, including any work experience, volunteering and extra-curricular activities
    • Any other supporting documentation which would strengthen your application.

    Admissions information

    Learn more about this course and others that Deakin offers by visiting VTAC for more information. You can also discover how Deakin compares to other universities when it comes to the quality of our teaching and learning by visiting the ComparED website.

    Special entry access schemes (SEAS) enables Deakin to consider disadvantageous circumstances you may have experienced and their impact upon your studies. SEAS also allows us to identify if you're from under-represented groups when making selection decisions for some courses. SEAS does not exempt you from meeting any of the course entry requirements.

    You can also find out about different entry pathways into Deakin courses if you can't get in straight from high school.

    Finally, Deakin is committed to admissions transparency. As part of that commitment, you can learn more about our first intake of 2020 students (PDF, 581.6KB) - their average ATARs, whether they had any previous higher education experience and more.

    Recognition of 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.

    You can also refer to the Recognition of Prior Learning System which outlines the credit that may be granted towards a Deakin University degree and how to apply for credit.

    Fees and scholarships

    Fee information

    Estimated tuition fee - full-fee paying place
    Not applicable
    Estimated tuition fee - (CSP)?
    $6,859 for 1 yr full-time - Commonwealth Supported Place (HECS)
    Learn more about fees.

    The tuition fees you pay will depend on the units you choose to study as each unit has its own costs. The ‘Estimated tuition fee’ is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students undertaking the first year of this course. The cost will vary depending on the units you choose, your study load, the time it takes to complete your course and any approved Recognition of Prior Learning you have.

    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 that course. Eight credit points is used as it represents a typical full-time enrolment load for a year.

    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 could help you pay for your course fees, living costs and study materials. If you've got something special to offer Deakin - or maybe you just need a bit of extra support - we've got a scholarship opportunity for you. Search or browse through our scholarships

    Apply now

    How to apply

    Apply direct to Deakin

    Applications can be made directly to the University through the Applicant Portal. Please note that closing dates may vary for individual courses.

    Need more information on how to apply?

    For more information on the application process and closing dates, visit the how to apply page.

    How to apply

    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

    Students who successfully complete the A250 Associate Degree of Arts are guaranteed entry into A300 Bachelor of Arts (General stream students) or A329 Bachelor of Criminology (Criminology Stream students) and may receive up to 16 credit points of Recognition of Prior Learning into these courses. 

    Following successful completion of the Associate Degree of Arts, students may also apply to transition, with credit, into a selected range of other Bachelor degrees, including Communications, Psychology, Health Science, Nursing, Commerce, Management or Science (including Marine Biology). 

    Contact information

    Prospective Student Enquiry Centre

    1800 693 888

    Why choose Deakin

    Want a degree that’s more than just a qualification? Our industry connections, world-class facilities and practical approach to learning are just some of the reasons why Deakin students graduate confident and ready to thrive in the jobs of tomorrow.

    Choose your journey with unique cross-disciplinary learning

    5-star rated university^

    Study units in your target degree from your very first trimester

    #1 university in Victoria for student satisfaction#

    Career outcomes

    Upon graduation from the Associate Degree of Arts, you’ll have the opportunity to continue studying or use the degree as a standalone qualification. You’ll have guaranteed entry into our Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Criminology depending on which specialisation you take, plus receive credit that could put you straight into your second year.

    You’ll also have the opportunity to apply to transition into other bachelor degrees, including communication, design, psychology, health science, nursing, commerce, management or science.

    An associate degree equips you with the skills to succeed in both university and your career.

    For more information go to DeakinTALENT

    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.


    Deakin Graduate Learning Outcomes

    Course Learning Outcomes

    - Generic

    Discipline specific knowledge and capabilities

    Acquire broad theoretical knowledge of and academic skills in the Arts, with some depth in the underlying principles and concepts in one or more disciplines or areas of practice in the Humanities, Social Sciences and/or the Creative Arts.

    Develop cognitive, technical and creative skills to understand discipline specific language in the Arts and apply this knowledge in employment contexts or for further studies.


    Acquire skills in oral, written and electronic communication and the ability to use these skills to coherently present knowledge and ideas in a range or contexts. 

    Digital literacy

    Research, analyse and communicate information in using knowledge of, and technical skills in a range of digital technologies. 

    Critical thinking

    Use cognitive skills to identify analyse and critically evaluate information through the application of principles, concepts and techniques in one or more disciplines or areas of practice in the Humanities, Social Sciences and/or the Creative Arts. 

    Problem solving

    Apply cognitive, technical and analytical skills and knowledge of principles and concepts in the Arts to investigate and transmit responses to sometimes complex problems in the Humanities, Social Sciences and/or the Creative Arts. 


    Act with autonomy, responsibility and accountability in learning and working independently and in collaboration with others in professional, and scholarly contexts. 


    Work and learn collaboratively with others and as a member of a team. 

    Global citizenship

    Understand and appreciate international perspectives in a global environment and act with awareness of ethics, cultural diversity and social responsibility in academic and work environments. 

    Approved by Faculty Board 2014


    Deakin Graduate Learning Outcomes

    Course Learning Outcomes

    - Criminology Stream

    Discipline specific knowledge and capabilities

    Review and analyse major social science theories and key criminological concepts, theories and technical knowledge relating to crime and criminal justice issues, including the causes and consequences of crime, ways of responding to crime, and core debates in policing and security as well as broader issues of policy and politics, inclusion and exclusion, governing and governance, security, social justice, citizenship and human rights. 


    Effectively communicate the findings and analyses of criminological concepts, theories and technical knowledge, in a selection of written, digital and oral formats, to a range of audiences. 

    Digital literacy

    Employ a range of generic and specialist criminal justice-specific digital communication technologies to apply criminological knowledge, conduct research and deliver reports and presentations to a diverse range of audiences. 

    Critical thinking

    Analyse and critically evaluate theoretical approaches to crime problems and current policies and practices of governments and criminal justice practitioners and professions. 

    Problem solving

    Employ initiative and creativity in conjunction with accepted evidence-based criminological methods to identify solutions to sometimes complex problems in criminology. 


    Demonstrate autonomy, responsibility, accountability and a continued commitment to learning and skills development in the criminological field. 


    Work and learn collaboratively with others in the criminology field and from different disciplines and backgrounds while still maintaining responsibility for their own learning. 

    Global citizenship

    Analyse and address criminological issues in the domestic and global context taking into consideration cultural and socio-economic diversity, social and environmental responsibility and the application of the highest ethical standards. 

    Approved by Faculty Board 2014


    *ARWU Rankings 2019
    ^QS Stars University Ratings 2016–2017
    #Year on year, our undergraduate students are the most-satisfied students of all Victorian universities. Australian Graduate Survey 2010–2015, Graduate Outcomes Survey 2016–2019 (GOS), Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT).
    **Mid-year intake is not available for all courses and some courses have limited places, apply early to avoid missing out.
    * Application close dates vary. Some courses have limited places, apply early to avoid missing out.

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