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Associate Degree of Allied Health

2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018

About this course

The Associate Degree of Allied Health is a two-year (full-time or part-time equivalent) entry-level course that provides students with the opportunity to prepare to study for a professional career pathway in allied health. 

The Associate degree provides a pathway for eligible graduates into the Southern Cross University Bachelor of Health ScienceBachelor of Occupational Therapy; or the Pedorthics pathway in the Bachelor of Clinical Sciences. There is also a generic pathway into the Bachelor of Clinical Sciences with credit (advanced standing) of up to 12 units.
The Associate Degree of Allied Health is offered through SCU College.

Career opportunities

Graduates of the Associate Degree of Allied Health who also have a Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance, have the opportunity to seek employment in Allied Health Assistant (AHA) roles within the health sector, and supplement their income whilst studying for a Bachelor’s degree.

Allied Health Assistants work under the direct supervision of health care professional to provide therapeutic and program-related support in a variety of assistant roles such as occupational therapy, physiotherapy, pedorthics, podiatry, speech pathology and nutrition.

Graduates may find work in a wide range of settings, including:

  • Public and private hospitals
  • Medical rehabilitation units
  • Community health settings
  • Community home care services
  • Residential aged care facilities (high and low care).

Professional placement

 Some units may involve a placement within an allied health environment.

Major areas of study

Core studies include human anatomy and physiology, communication skills for the health sciences, and introductory science, psychology and sociology for health professionals.

The Associate Degree of Allied Health includes units in first year that enable students to prepare for further study at Southern Cross University, to pursue professional career paths at the Bachelor level in speech pathology, podiatry, occupational therapy or pedorthics. Many units of the Associate degree align with first year units in these degree pathways.

The Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance is integrated into the Associate degree course framework, and equips graduates with the skill-set sought by employers in this field.

Assessment methods

Assessment tasks vary from unit to unit and can include essays, reports, audio or video presentations, class participation, individual and group work, online quizzes, case analyses, and examinations. Assessment items are in accordance with learning outcomes and designed to ensure that all the graduate attributes are assessed throughout the course. The performance criteria, grading standards and due dates for assessment tasks are included in each Unit Information Guide. Students receive timely feedback on their assessment submissions.

Teaching methods

On-campus students experience a variety of teaching approaches including lectures, tutorials, online activities and video-linked or podcast virtual classes. The method of teaching may vary from unit to unit.

Advanced standing

Your previous learning experiences relevant to one or more units in this course may help you reduce the duration of your degree.

  • Recognition of formal and non-formal learning
    Credit may be awarded to a student for formal learning (gained through full or partial achievement of an accredited qualification or course) or non-formal learning (that takes place through a non-accredited course or program of learning) completed at Southern Cross University or in other learning settings in Australia and/or overseas.

To help you identify how much credit you may receive for your related prior learning visit SCU Pathways.

An application for advanced standing must be submitted so we can assess your prior learning. Please apply for advanced standing at the same time as you apply for admission into this course, because the amount of credit awarded will determine the sequence of units you will study.

 Go to course structure to see if specific advanced standing rules also apply to this course.

Learning support

Learning resources

MySCU is a student's point of entry to a range of online services and resources that support study and student life. The portal includes unit learning sites and information sites where students can access resources, communication tools and useful links that are integral to their studies.

The web-based study environment Blackboard Learn delivers an advanced online learning environment for students and lecturers to communicate and collaborate through virtual meeting spaces, classrooms, and discussion boards. They can share files, presentations and applications. If a tutorial or lecture is recorded, students can view it afterwards.

Learning materials include the provision of unit information guides, study guides and readings. Students may need to purchase or access prescribed text books.

The SCU Library provides a wide range of services that include face-to-face and online help, and access to print and electronic resources. To find out more, see the Library Toolbox.

The Academic Skills team supports student learning by offering online and on-campus academic skills workshops, assignment reviews and small group or one-on-one face-to-face, phone or Skype consultations during business hours 9am to 4.30pm. Appointments can be made via the MySCU Hub ‘Connect Now’ button or on the Academic Skills home page. Students can also book appointments online in Career Hub.

The YourTutor service provides online after-hours study support for SCU students. This service is available from 4pm to midnight Sunday to Friday via the 'Connect Now' button on MySCU Hub or from a link in nominated unit learning sites. The YourTutor service offers generic writing feedback and live online chat assistance for foundational concepts and study skills.

Equipment and facilities

Southern Cross University provides students with modern well equipped teaching spaces such as lecture theatres, classrooms, and studios or laboratories tailored to meet the needs of specific study disciplines. Contemporary audiovisual equipment is standard in most teaching venues, and students have access to computer labs for individual study purposes.

Course structure

See the University’s Rules Relating to Awards, in conjunction with the Specific Award Rules listed below.

Table of contents

Course requirements

  1. To be eligible for the award of Associate Degree of Allied Health a candidate shall successfully complete the equivalent of sixteen (16) units (or 192 credit points) comprising:
    1. Completion of National Training Package Qualification: Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance
    2. All units listed in Part A and Part B of the Schedule of Units
    3. A group of two (2) units from Part C of the Schedule; and
    4. Two (2) elective units from Part D of the Schedule.
  2. Candidates are required to successfully complete Rule (a)(i); all units in Part A; and two (2) electives from Part D, before proceeding to Part B or Part C.

Schedule of units


How to apply

Domestic students

The information on this page may be subject to change over time. Please check this page again before acting and see our disclaimer.

From the 1st of June, 2017, the term 'Distance Education' has been replaced with 'Online'