Monash courses explained

In our experience, different students want – and need – different things from a university. You may want to undertake a broad education before choosing a specific career; you may have difficulty deciding between two strong areas of interest (or want to keep both alive); or you may know exactly what you want to do career-wise and want to focus on that goal from day one.

Whichever category you fall into, Monash can help. We provide a variety of courses that lead to different professional outcomes and, in some cases, offer different courses that lead to the same career. Whatever route you take, you will graduate with an internationally recognised qualification and well prepared for your chosen career.

Monash University organises its undergraduate courses into two types: comprehensive and specialist.

Comprehensive courses

These courses allow you to select from a wide range of subjects within a broad field of study.

You can choose a Monash Comprehensive course in five broad fields: arts, business, commerce, information technology or science, and then customise your course to make it uniquely yours.  You study a range of subjects from across the field broadening your knowledge to suit your personal needs while also deepening your knowledge of at least one subject that will become your major.

You have the option to choose your major immediately or later. You try a range of subjects in your first year at university, then narrow your focus in year two – while still having the opportunity to try new things – before finally committing to your major area of study. In some comprehensive courses, you will be required to complete a minor in a second subject.  

At the end of your course you will have a sound understanding of your broad field of study with in depth expertise of at least one specialised field within it.

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Specialist courses

With a specialist course at Monash you begin study in your area of interest from day one. If you have a specific career goal or more specific field of study firmly in your sights, this may be the option for you. These courses are designed to ensure you have the right combination of skills needed for your professional field.

Some specialist courses prepare you to practise in a regulated profession such as law, physiotherapy, architecture, and engineering. Others – for example our undergraduate courses in fine art, biomedical science and pharmaceutical science – develop expertise relevant to a focussed field of study that may lead to a range of professional positions within that field.

All our four-year specialist courses lead to an honours degree, this means that you can develop a deeper knowledge in your chosen field and usually complete an expert master's degree in just one additional year.

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Double your options with a double degree

In a double-degree course, you study towards two degrees at the same time – for example commerce and engineering, or science and law – graduating with two separate qualifications. Studying towards two degrees at the same time allows you to keep your options open, to develop expertise in different but complementary areas, or simply to pursue two areas of interest in-depth.

A double undergraduate degree course at Monash will take two years less than if you completed the two degrees consecutively and makes you highly employable, distinguishing you in today's crowded job market through your combination of skills.

Monash offers one of the most extensive ranges of double degrees in Australia, with more than 140 double-degrees combinations across all major study fields.

Remember, though, that double degrees are not the only way to tailor your qualification to fit your diverse interests and talents. If you choose a comprehensive course, you can combine major and minor areas of study to prepare yourself for possible alternative careers.  You can also use free electives in many courses to select minors or even majors from across the university to meet your particular needs.  

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Honours and postgraduate qualifications

Every undergraduate Bachelor course – comprehensive or specialist – offers clear pathways into postgraduate qualifications.

Firstly, Monash offers two types of honours degree courses.

Unlike other universities, all our four-year specialist courses lead to an honours degree. This means that you can usually complete an expert master's degree in just one additional year. This could be immediately following your degree or after you have worked in your chosen field for a while. Some three-year courses also offer a four-year advanced-honours version that offer the same benefit.

In addition, Monash offers one year honours programs that can be studied after completing our three year comprehensive or specialist courses.

Secondly, even if you decide not to take an honours course, at the completion of your Bachelor degree course you can study an expert Masters course in your field of interest, it will take just a little longer (usually six months) than if you had an honours qualification.

You may also consider a postgraduate research qualification. Monash University is a world-leading research university and conducts ground-breaking research in many fields. After your honours year, you can undertake a research master's course, or work toward completing a PhD.