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Bachelor of Clinical Sciences

2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017

About this course

The Bachelor of Clinical Sciences has a strong clinical focus and provides students with a comprehensive grounding in biomedical science and health. During the course, students gain the knowledge and skills required to continue their health education with a graduate course in a professional area such as osteopathy (offered by SCU).

Career opportunities

This course provides a pathway into graduate entry osteopathy. It also prepares students for a variety of career directions in the health and education sectors, including at medical or health centres, resorts and retreats.

Professional recognition

For students interested in pursuing a career in osteopathy, five years of education and training is required (three-year Bachelor of Clinical Sciences majoring in Osteopathic Studies and Human Structure and Function; and a two-year Master of Osteopathic Medicine offered by Southern Cross University). In Australia, entry level training in osteopathic medicine is accredited by the Osteopathy Board of Australia and this course pathway has full accreditation. Registration in Australia gives mobility across all states and territories and New Zealand.

Professional placement

Students will have the opportunity to undertake a supervised professional placement. Professional placements provide students with experience in the practice of safe and effective manual therapy and the application of a wide range of treatments and management plans. Students have opportunities to work with a diverse range of patients in areas including rehabilitation, health promotion and illness prevention.

Professional experience placements require students to fulfil certain pre-requisites prior to attending any placements. Before applying for this course, it is important that you understand what these requirements are.

Major areas of study

Only the following majors will be available in 2016:

Human Structure and Function (taught at Lismore only) extends knowledge through the study of advanced levels of anatomy and physiology, particularly the structure and function of the muscular and nervous systems.

Osteopathic Studies (only available as a double major with Human Structure and Function and taught at Lismore only) introduces students to the philosophical and biological underpinnings of the osteopathic concept of health. The major develops students’ foundational skills in diagnosis and technique that are utilised in osteopathic clinical practice.

General study program (taught at Lismore or Gold Coast) provides the option to complete the course without a major. Students tailor the course by choosing from a wide range of elective units.

Please note:
Students interested in the Human Structure and Function, and Osteopathic Studies majors are advised to apply to study this course at Lismore, to commence in Session 1. Students interested in the general study program can apply to study at either Lismore or Gold Coast, to commence in Session 1 or 2.

Assessment methods

The assessment methods used in this course vary from unit to unit. Most units utilise progressive assessment with marks typically allocated across a combination of assessment tasks due at different times during the study period that often include a formal end of session examination. Assessment requirements for each unit are advised in writing to students at the commencement of each study period with clear guidelines, due dates, and the weighting for each assessment task.

Teaching methods

On-campus students experience a variety of teaching approaches including face-to-face lectures and tutorials. Some units offer online activities, classes, pre-recorded and/or live lectures. The method of teaching may vary from unit to unit.

The distance education study option is highly interactive and strives to promote collaboration and a sense of community. Students may receive online pre-recorded and/or live lectures, electronic study materials, workshops, online discussion forums and 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 cut months or years off 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.
  • Recognition of informal learning
    Credit may be awarded on the basis of current informal learning (that takes place through work, social, family or leisure activities).

To help you identify how much credit you may receive for your related prior learning, the University has evaluated the learning within some Australian and overseas qualifications/courses, visit SCU Pathways. If your previous study or educational institution is not listed, we still encourage you to apply for advanced standing because you might still be eligible.

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, email, phone, and one-on-one support.

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.

Specialist facilities include access to fully equipped and up-to-date scientific laboratories for clinical sciences, biomechanics and biochemistry, and state-of-the-art facilities for human anatomy. Visit scu.edu.au/healthlabs

Clinical practice-based learning is also undertaken at the SCU Health Clinics, located at the Lismore and Gold Coast campuses.

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 Bachelor of Clinical Sciences, a candidate shall successfully complete not less than twenty-four (24) units comprising:
    1. Eight (8) units from Part A of the Schedule; and
    2. one (1) eight-unit major selected from the majors in Part B of the Schedule plus eight (8) elective units from the School of Health and Human Sciences; or
    3. two (2) eight-unit majors selected from Part B of the Schedule of Units; or
    4. sixteen (16) elective units including those from Part B of the Schedule or any unit from the School of Health and Human Sciences.
  2. To be eligible for the award of Associate Degree of Clinical Sciences a candidate shall successfully complete not less than sixteen (16) units comprising:
    1. Five (5) units from Part A of the Schedule of Units:
      - BIO00307  Human Physiology
      - BIO00101  Physiological Pathology I
      - BIO00102  Physiological Pathology II
      - NUT00214 Food and Nutrition in Health
      - BIO01302 Human Anatomy; and
    2. eleven (11) units including those from Part B of the Schedule or any university elective.
  3. A candidate who, while enrolled in the Bachelor of Clinical Sciences, has successfully completed the requirements for the Associate Degree of Clinical Sciences may elect to be awarded the Associate Degree of Clinical Sciences following withdrawal from the Bachelor of Clinical Sciences.

Advanced standing

Candidates who have completed a Certificate IV, Diploma or Advanced Diploma at an AQF Registered Training Organisation (RTO) in the same or a related discipline, with similar learning outcomes, volume of learning, program of study (including content), and learning and assessment approaches, may be granted advanced standing of unspecified electives into the Bachelor of Clinical Sciences of up to 4, 8 or 12 units, respectively.

Schedule of units

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How to apply

Domestic students

International students

Confirm you meet the entry requirements including English language and academic entry and any specific pre-requisites.

Southern Cross University accepts applications directly through the International Application for Admissions form.

Additional information on how to apply is available at SCU International. Please note applicants from some countries need to go through an Education Agent.

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