Academic year dates in Australia

The academic year in Australia varies depending on the type of study you are undertaking.

The academic year in Australia varies depending on the type of study you are undertaking.

Many institutions also offer a mid-year, or second semester start. Start dates and the number of semesters vary by course and institution, so please check directly on your institution’s website for details.

Below is a general guide on the academic year for the different levels of study in Australia:

Schools

  • Length - 13 years in total (Kindergarten/Preparatory to Year 12)
  • Semesters - 4 (usually called terms')
  • Starts - Late January/early February

English

  • Length - From 5 weeks to 1 year
  • Semesters - The year is split into weeks
  • Starts - Throughout the year

Foundation

  • Length - 1 year (some may be longer)
  • Semesters - The semester breaks will depend on your course
  • Starts - February but can vary by course and institutions

Vocational Education and Training

  • Length - 1 to 4 years
  • Semesters - Two
  • Starts - February, but can vary by course and institutions

Undergraduate

  • Length - Typically 3 years (4 years for honours degree)
  • Semesters - Two, although some institutions offer three semesters (trimesters)
  • Starts - Typically March, but can vary by course and institution

Postgraduate

  • Length - 1 to 2 years
  • Semesters - Two, although some institutions offer three semesters (trimesters)
  • Starts - Typically March, but can vary by course and institution

Doctoral

  • Length - 3 years (plus 1 year for review)
  • Semesters - As most doctoral candidates do not attend class, there are usually no formal semesters
  • Starts - Start dates are negotiated with PhD supervisor

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