Choosing a career

If you're not sure what you want your future job to be, think first about what you enjoy doing now. You’ll be happiest studying a course and working in a job that matches your interests and strengths.

Ask yourself:

  • what are my favourite subjects and activities at school?
  • what activities do I enjoy outside school?
  • what am I good at?

Your answers to these questions will give you a starting point for the kinds of courses and careers you could choose. Check out our quick guide to courses and careers if you need further help to decide what job would suit you.

You can also take the Job Outlook career quiz to help you understand what areas of work you may enjoy, then browse through a range of careers on the Job Guide website.

Volunteering or applying for work experience in the areas that interest you are other good ways to find out if you like them.

Find the right course

Once you have a better idea of your strengths and interests, you can search for university or TAFE courses that match.

For example, if your favourite subjects at school are science and physical education, and you love playing team sports in your spare time, you might want to study a Bachelor of Sport Science. This course could help you find work as an exercise physiologist or sport scientist for a professional sport team.

Our quick guide to courses and careers provides more examples of courses and the possible careers you might enjoy.

TAFE or uni – what's best for you?

At VU you can choose to study a university course, or a TAFE course through our TAFE division, Victoria Polytechnic.

There are several differences between TAFE and university study. The following comparison may help you decide which you would prefer:

TAFE courses

  • Types: certificates, diplomas and apprenticeships
  • Length: 6 months - 3 years
  • How courses are taught: classes, interactive workshops, practical training
  • How you learn: supported learning (more hours are spent learning in the classroom)

University courses

  • Types: bachelor degrees (with the option to continue studying a graduate certificate, graduate diploma, masters or PhD)
  • Length: 3 - 4 years
  • How courses are taught: theory-focused classes and workplace learning
  • How you learn: individual learning (for each hour in the classroom, students are expected to study 3 hours on their own)

You can also choose to first study at TAFE, and then at university. We make it easy for you to transfer from TAFE courses at Victoria Polytechnic to degrees at VU through our pathways program.

Getting into a course

Entry into your chosen course depends on whether or not you meet the admission requirements, which are different for each course. In most cases, this will be the study score (raw score) you obtain in prerequisite VCE subjects.

Once you have chosen the courses you would like to study, be sure to check the admission information for the prerequisite VCE subjects. By basing your VCE subject selection on these, you will give yourself the best chance of gaining a place in the course you want to do.

More examples of courses and corresponding VCE subjects are available in our quick guide to courses and careers.

Some courses at VU will also use your Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR) to determine your eligibility for entry. Your ATAR is based on the total of all your Year 12 subject scores and received at the completion of your VCE.

Certain courses at VU and Victoria Polytechnic also include an audition or interview in their entry requirements.

The specific entry requirements for each course are outlined on our course pages.

Ease into university study

Moving from secondary school to university can feel like stepping into a completely new world.

Not only are you expected to juggle several units and assignment deadlines all at once, but you may also want more time for work, travel and to explore everything life has to offer.

That's why we've developed our exciting First Year Model - to help you ease into university study and the pressures of adulthood, while making sure that you graduate industry and job-ready.

Our First Year Model offers:

  • more focused learning, as you take only one unit at a time
  • the chance to get to know your classmates better with smaller, more interactive classes
  • practical, hands-on learning
  • more support and guidance, with the same teacher throughout your unit
  • regular and ongoing feedback, so that you know how you're doing before completing a unit
  • flexible timetabling options to give you more time for work and life outside of uni.

Find out more about how our First Year Model works.