Course Planning

Course enrolment

Students should enrol in courses as stated in their program guide - this includes the actual courses in the program and when they occur. Students who have failed courses or who otherwise have disjointed programs should consult the School for enrolment advice. Students should not enrol in courses from outside their stated program without permission - such courses are counted as Non-Award and attract full fee payment upfront as their costs cannot be deferred to FEE-HELP. Students are responsible for ensuring that they are enrolled in the correct courses.

Discontinuation without failure

Students can discontinue from a course without academic failure and financial penalty prior to the census date in each session. Students can also discontinue from a course after this date, but before the end of the teaching period without academic penalty only. Both these discontinuation dates are specified in the UNSW calendar. To withdraw from a course after both the discontinuation dates have passed, you will need special permission, which is only granted in exceptional circumstances. Details can be found here.


Students who wish to overload (i.e. take more than 18 UoC in a term, or more than 12 UoC in Summer Term) must apply for permission.

Only students who have completed at least 48 UoC at UNSW and have a cumulative WAM of 65 or more, or are in their final year of study, will be allowed to overload. Students may only overload a maximum of 6 UoC (i.e. 24 UoC in total, or 18 UoC in Summer Term). Applications to overload are considered on a case-by-case basis and must be made using the Application to Overload form.

Program Leave

Program leave may be granted to enrolled domestic Undergraduate and Postgraduate students wishing to discontinue their current enrolment with the intention of resuming their studies at a later date. Leave is generally restricted to no more than three terms over the duration of a student's enrolment in a Program. Applications for leave in excess of three terms will be approved only in exceptional circumstances at the discretion of the Program Authority. Program leave is not usually available to international students.

Rules and Regulations for program leave and information about how to apply can be found at myUNSW.

Program transfers

Program transfers into or out of the School's program are done via the University's Program Transfer (IPT) process. Students transferring into any of the School's programs should consult with the School to have appropriate courses transferred from their old program. The School does not give permission for students to enrol in courses from outside their current program in anticipation of transferring to a new program. More information can be found here.

Academic Plan (declaration of major)

Students in the Bachelor of Engineering (Materials Science and Engineering) program must declare their Academic Plan before they commence Stage 3 (i.e. by the end of Term 3 of Stage 2) of their program and may change their specialisation up until the end of Term 1 of Stage 3. 

To declare your Academic Plan, you will need to complete and submit the Online Major Declaration Form.

For more information about choosing a major, click here.

Timetable clash approval

Students cannot enrol into courses which have a timetable clash. When two or more courses have a timetable clash, permission must be sought in advance from the course coordinator(s) of the courses involved, using the Timetable Clash Approval form.

Clashes are considered on a case-by-case basis taking into account the extent of the clash, the measures taken to minimise the impact of the clash and the student's overall academic performance. The student needs to obtain permission from the course coordinators of the clashing courses and then take the form to the School Office to organise enrolment in the courses.