Student Exchange and Study Abroad

Students on exchangeAll undergraduate Psychology students at UWA have the opportunity to apply to study overseas, and we welcome overseas students who choose to study with us.

For general information about Student Exchange and where you can choose to study, visit the University's Student Exchange website and/or contact the team at UWA Global Studio.

The information presented below is for UWA students who wish to go on exchange and require approval for psychology units to be taken at a host university.

The Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) has requirements relating to the content and standard of psychology study awarded by Australian universities, so the UWA School of Psychological Science needs to ensure that the courses you do overseas meet APAC requirements, as well as UWA requirements. This means that psychology units taken overseas must be assessed as equivalent to UWA psychology units in terms of content, assessment mechanisms, and lecture and tutorial/laboratory time. It is important that students consider this information before deciding upon a host university as there may be universities offering psychology units that do not comply with our accreditation requirements.

In selecting units to be taken on exchange, it is essential that you carefully read the information below.

Choosing when to go on exchange

To meet accreditation requirements for completing a psychology major(s) we would advise students to go on exchange in Semester 2 of the second year of their degree.  This allows students to complete core psychology units here at UWA, including the eight Level 3 psychology units (48 points) used for entry into our Honours program. 

It is important to note the years and semesters in which units are taught and the impact that exchange may have on course planning and course completion when a student returns to UWA.  Students should take into consideration the Level 2 and Level 3 psychology option units which are only offered every second year.

Semester 1:  PSYC2212/PSYC3312 Psychology and Social Behaviour

 PSYC2217/PSYC3317 Cognitive Neuroscience
Semester 2:  PSYC2208/PSYC3308 Psychology: Atypical Development

 PSYC2209/PSYC3309 Industrial and Organisational Psychology
Semester 1:
 PSYC2213/PSYC3313 Psychology: Lifespan Development
   PSYC2215/PSYC3315 Cognitive Psychology
Semester 2:
 PSYC2214/PSYC3314 Adult Psychopathology
   PSYC2218/PSYC3318 Perception and Sensory Neuropsychology

We would encourage students to complete a course plan to ensure that they can complete their degree with the units taken on exchange and the units available here at UWA upon their return.

Choosing your exchange units: Selection Advice

Although the School is unable to provide advice on specific units you should undertake, please refer to the tips and hints below to help guide you in choosing your overseas units.

If you are seeking "specified credit" (i.e. you wish to take an overseas unit in lieu of a specified unit within Psychology at UWA) you should carefully read the unit information for the UWA Psychology unit in the University Handbook and in the unit outline on UIMS, and select an overseas unit that you feel closely matches the UWA unit. If the content of the overseas unit is not sufficiently similar to the content of the specified UWA Psychology unit it is very unlikely that your application will be approved.

Alternatively, if you are seeking "unspecified credit" (i.e. the overseas subject will constitute a non-psychology elective within your degree) then it is not necessary for the content to resemble any of our units. Rather, it is only necessary that the content is judged to be of sufficient relevance to the discipline and that the unit is equivalent to our own unit in terms of overall workload.

Please note that as a School we can only make recommendations that the units are suitable for credit towards an accredited sequence of psychology study at UWA. It is your Allocated Advising Student Office that awards the credit and makes the final decision about what and how much credit you receive from your overseas study.

Your units must be a match for UWA units: Assessing the equivalency of Psychology units

In order to maintain compliance with Psychology Accreditation bodies, it is essential that any psychology units you wish to study overseas as part of your UWA degree are deemed equivalent to Psychology units offered here at UWA in terms of:

  • Content
  • Level (such as a Level 2 unit)
  • Delivery mode (such as appropriate number of lectures/seminars and labs/tutorials)
  • Assessment  (an appropriate mix of written assessment and exams)
To ensure that your Allocated Advising Student Office has all the information required for assessment we require you provide a detailed unit outline for each of the units under assessment.  The unit outline must contain the following information:
  • The level of the unit  (e.g. Level 2 unit)
  • The worth of the unit - How many units/credit points per semester do students study in a standard full-time enrolment at your intended exchange university? (e.g. 10 credit points, with a year of full-time study being worth 80 credit points at the overseas institution)
  • Prerequisites for the unit
  • Content information for each unit, including delivery mode information (e.g. 26 hours of lectures; eight hours of labs/tutorials)
  • Detailed assessment information including the weighting of each piece of assessment (e.g. 2000 word essay 30%; Oral presentation 20%; 2-hour exam 50%)
  • Marking scale used for the unit. Students must also agree to bring back a transcript for the marks (e.g. 69%) for each of the units taken on exchange as a grade only (e.g. distinction, credit, pass, fail) is not sufficient.

Are there units I could study overseas that I won't get credit for?

Yes, you should avoid psychology units that are very similar to units you will have already completed at UWA, as you may not be able to get credit for these. Similarly, if there is a unit you are keen to to complete at UWA when you get back, don't complete a very similar course on exchange.

Where do UWA psychology students go on exchange?

We are in the process of compiling a list of universities where our students have gone on exchange, and this will be updated regularly as new universities are added. Please note that this list should be used as a guide only, and you will still be required to get approval for psychology units to be taken on exchange. This is because content, assessment mechanisms, and lecture and tutorial/laboratory time may vary within a unit from one year to the next.