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Frequently Asked Questions

Applications & Admissions

Will you have an Open Day or Information Evening?

Dates for our 2018 Open Nights have been announced, bookings can be made through Eventbrite at the below link.

Our Open Night and Information Evenings will be held at our Hawthorn Campus, 391-393 Tooronga Road, Hawthorn East, VIC 3123.

You will be welcome to arrive from 4:30pm to have an informal chat with our academic and selection staff, with formal proceedings starting at 5:00pm. We expect to finish the presentations by 6:30pm followed by further opportunity to have direct conversations with selection teams as well as light refreshments.

Additional Open Nights will run in 2019 for our mid-year Bachelor of Psychology (honours) intake. Keep an eye on our Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts for more information.

If you are unable to attend the open night for your course/s of interest then you can use the form at the bottom of this page to send us additional questions. We cannot offer one-off tours or pre-application meetings with applicants, but we will try to respond to any questions which are not already answered on this page or the Course Pages.

How many offers do you make?

Entry to all Cairnmillar programs is competitive. The entry requirements listed are the minimum to be considered for entry. We take into consideration a number of factors in addition to academic results, in particular performance in the interview and academic references.

Most programs take 20 to 30 students through two to four rounds of offers. The Counselling and Psychotherapy courses may take more students where resources allow.

How do I calculate my Average Grade or Weighted Average Mark?

A guide on how to calculate your averaged result can be found here.

  • For Graduate Diploma of Psychology applicants, it is important that you only provide the WAM for your 2nd and 3rd year level Psychology subjects.
  • All other Psychology applicants should provide the total WAM for all subjects in their most recent APAC accredited qualification.
  • Counselling applicants should simply provide the total WAM for all subjects in their most recent qualification.

If your current or most recent institution is one of the few in Australia which does not provide exact marks on your official academic transcript, we will require an additional document from you in order to process your application. See the answer below for more information.

My current institution does not list final marks out of 100 on my transcript (e.g. Fed Uni or ACU), what should I do?

Unfortunately, because your current or most recent institution is one of the few in Australia which does not provide exact marks on your official academic transcript, we will require an additional document from you in order to process your application.

We will need a formal letter from your Head of School or Head of Department of Psychology, or from your Course or Year Coordinator, which states your marks out of 100 for all APAC accredited units of study in psychology and your current weighted average mark (WAM) out of 100. Your Psychology Department or School should be familiar with providing these letters as WAM on entry is an APAC requirement.

Once you have obtained the letter please attach it with your application or send it to we can append it to your application for you. It is likely that other institutions you have applied to will also require this information and we suggest you keep a copy once you have the letter.

If your university asks to send the document directly to us (in the case that some of your marks are still provisional, for example) then it can be sent by them directly to

When will interviews be held?

Dcotor of Psychology (Clinical Psychology)
TBC: Interviews will be held in a number of rounds starting in early November and early December 2018. A second round of interviews may be held in January 2019.

Master of Psychology (Clinical Psychology)
TBC: Interviews will be held in a number of rounds starting in early November and early December 2018. A second round of interviews may be held in January 2019.

Master of Professional Psychology
TBC: Interviews will be held in a number of rounds starting in early November and early December 2018. A second round of interviews may be held in January 2019.

Bachelor of Psychology (Honours)
The Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) program does not normally interview. If required an interview will be held informally by phone.

All Counselling and Psychotherapy Programs
TBC: Interviews will be held in a number of rounds starting in early November and early December 2018. A second round of interviews may be held in January 2019.

Can I have my interview by Skype?

Yes, if you are overseas or out of state for the offered interview time it is possible to hold an interview via Skype. Check your interview invitation for more details on how to request this. The interview will normally be held at the originally offered time.

I have another qualification, can I get RPL/Advanced Standing/Credit Transfer?

We do not assess Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) applications untilafteran offer of place is made.
Students who are offered a place can apply for RPL and, where previous studies are directly comparable to our accredited units of study RPL may be granted for up to 50% of the course. More information on the RPL process will be available when offers are made.

For Psychology courses, RPL and credit can normally only be granted if your prior studies were in an APAC accredited program or the same or higher level than the one you are applying to. This means you cannot get credit for 4th-year psychology units in a 5th-year course.

I have a specific qualification am I eligible for one of your courses? Can you pre-assess my application?

Because all of our courses are competitive entry we do not offer pre-assessment of applications. It is the responsibility of applicants to ensure that they are eligible to apply.

The minimum requirements for each course are listed on this website on the relevant Course Pages.

Any requests for pre-assessment or specific eligibility will not normally be responded to.

I have an overseas qualification, am I eligible and how do I apply?

We do not pre-assess applications and cannot assist you with specific enquiries about overseas degrees.

Psychology Courses
Applicants applying to a psychology course with overseas qualifications will need to provide an assessment of overseas qualifications from the APS with your application. We recommend that you apply as soon as possible to the APS for assessment as time frames vary and your application for our programs will not be able to be considered without a valid APS assessment.

You can find more about APS assessments here:

Counselling Courses
If you are applying for a counselling and psychotherapy course your qualifications will be assessed once you make an application. We do not pre-assess applications and you will need to use your best judgement about the equivalency of your overseas qualification to the Australian AQF system.

You can find the entry criteria for all of our courses on their specific course pages here.

What is your IELTS requirement? Do you make conditional offers without or with lower IELTS scores?

Our IELTS requirement is 7 for all courses.

Psychology courses will not consider any international applicants with an IELTS lower than 7. All psychology applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements for AHPRA registration. See the AHPRA website for more information.

The Masters of Counselling and Psychotherapy may provisionally consider applicants who have an IELTS score of 6.5 or better where other factors are exceptional.

We do not consider international applications without an IELTS score or other evidence of meeting English language requirements, and we are unable to offer conditional places on these grounds. Applicants attending an English course in Australia or elsewhere are encouraged to apply at the end of that course once their IELTS score has been improved.

When will offers be made?

Applications are assessed on a case by case basis and we make several rounds of offers in some programs.

First round offers in most programs will be made in December 2018 or January 2019. Waitlisted and later round offers can be made at any time including up until the start of teaching in some cases.

We let applicants know as soon as possible once a decision is made however this is a long and fairly complex process. All rejected applicants will be contacted as soon as possible. All applicants should have a final outcome by the end of March 2019.

Please do not contact Cairnmillar to follow up on the status of your application – we do not currently have the capacity to respond to such requests and answering these slows down processing for all applicants. Any such queries will not be responded to.

Where can I find more information about Admissions Transparency Implementation and your Information Sets?

“The initial focus [of the Admissions Transparency Implementation] is to support the choices of prospective domestic undergraduate students, including applicants for diploma, advanced diploma, associate degree and bachelor degree courses.” (Admissions Transparency Implementation Plan)

Cairnmillar does not offer any undergraduate degrees. This means that we do not have any data for Admissions Information Sets and ATAR is not relevant for our entry and admissions processes. If you have further questions please contact for advice or clarification.

Do you work with Agents?

We do not currently accept applications or pay commissions to educational agents. We do not pay commission for enrolments. This policy is non-negotiable. We ask that education agents do not contact us or our staff.

Documentation & References

What documentation do I need to provide with my application?

All applicants will need to provide:

  • Your most recent academic transcripts
  • A current curriculum vitae
  • A 500 word statement on why you wish to study at Cairnmillar
  • Proof of residency/citizenship (e.g. passport, birth certificate, or citizenship certificate)
  • References through (see FAQ below for more detail)

International applicants will also need to provide:

  • Proof of IELTS score

Applicants with overseas qualifications will also need to provide:

  • Certified translations of any academic documents not issued in English.
  • APS certification for overseas qualifications (for Psychology courses only)

If you are using copies they must be certified, if you are scanning and uploading originals they do not need to be certified.

You must attach your documentation to your online application, you cannot always re-start an application once you get to this stage so please have your documents ready before you apply. If you miss something or want to update a document after you apply, you can provide the documents by email to

I do not have my final grades yet, what should I do?

Provide a current transcript and enter your current Weighted Average Mark (WAM) for the relevant course based on the results you do have. Your application will be provisionally considered and ranked based on current WAM. You must provide evidence of your current results, normally in the form of an official but incomplete academic transcript. Contact your current institution for advice about obtaining an Official Academic Transcript or similar official evidence before you have completed your course.

Once you have your final grades for all units or study you can re-submit your updated Official Academic Transcript and final WAM score to and your application will be updated at that time.

If an offer is made on a current and non-final WAM score then the offer will normally be conditional upon maintaining or exceeding a specific score.

I have submitted an application, can I check on my application, referee or document status?

Unfortunately, our application portal does not allow for checking application status beyond pending or incomplete status. Pending applications are under review and incomplete applications will require additional action (we will be in touch to let you know what to do). Any emails or queries regarding application status, receipt of documents or receipt of references will not normally be responded to.

It can take up to two weeks for new documents sent to to be processed and you will be emailed once your application is updated. We will email all applicants a confirmation of their application status after applications close. We will also send semi-automated emails to applicants with incomplete applications on a regular basis. Please do not contact Cairnmillar to follow up on the status of your application or documents – we do not currently have the capacity to respond to such requests and answering these slows down processing for all applicants. Please only contact us about your application status if you do not have a confirmation email by 10 November 2018.

Please use to check your referee and reference status. When used correctly this system works well and Cairnmillar cannot take responsibility for checking this for you.

How many referees do I need to provide? How do I provide my references?

References are provided through – a guide to the service can be found here.

The Doctor of Psychology (Clinical Psychology), The Master of Psychology (Clinical Psychology), the Master of Professional Psychology Practice and Master of Professional Psychology courses require two academic references and one professional reference.

The Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) course, one academic reference can be provided. This is optional, please note that a reference will be provided in your personal statement to ensure it is considered with your application.

The Graduate Certificate of Counselling and Psychotherapy, the Graduate Diploma of Counselling and Psychotherapy, and the Master of Counselling and Psychotherapy all require two references, we prefer at least one academic reference. However, if you have been out of higher education for more than ten years then two professional references or voluntary references will be sufficient.

There will be no exceptions to this. For fairness to all applicants, requests for alternatives to this service will not be possible. Please contact the service directly if you have problems or issues with using their system or their fees:

The HODSPA Reference System needs a student ID but I don’t have a Cairnmillar ID yet?

This is not a required field and refers to your ID from your previous institutions, not Cairnmillar. Please either leave the field blank or use your student ID from your last institution to help your referees identify you. Contact your referees if you are not sure if they require your old ID number for reference purposes.

Please do not contact CMI about ID numbers. New students will not be given ID numbers until after offers and enrolment are both processed in early 2019.

Who should my referees be?

You need to do your best to provide a strong application including choosing the referees who can best attest to your suitability for a professional career in psychology or counselling is part of that process.

An academic reference can be: a teacher, a tutor, a lecturer or a research supervisor. These referees need to be able to comment on your writing and research abilities as well as your suitability for a psychology or counselling career.

A professional referee can be: an employer, a volunteer coordinator, a representative from an organisation you volunteer for (e.g. a Lifeline team leader), or a professional counsellor or psychologist, or other relevant person you have worked with who can comment on your work ethic and your personal qualities with some authority.

Referees should not be close friends and should not be related to you.

We do not answer questions about the suitability of your choice of referees and do not pre-assess applications. If you need help in finding suitable references and making the best application possible we suggest that you speak to your current academic advisors, or someone you know in the field or counselling or psychology.

We are a small school and cannot provide tailored support to all applicants. Ultimately applicants are responsible for finding suitable referees who know them well enough to comment on the relevant areas of their ability.

What should I write in my personal statement? How long should it be?

Your personal statement should address why you wish to study at Cairnmillar and should be 500 words long. Up to 10% either side is normally acceptable should your statement be a sentence or two under or over the limit.

Do I need to provide a Working With Children Check or Police Check in order to apply?

No, you do not need to provide your police check or WWCC to apply for any Cairnmillar programs but you will need to be able to pass and provide both checks if you take up a place to study with us.

If we make an offer of place we will send you detailed information about what kind of checks are required and when and how you must provide them.

Do my documents need to be certified?

If you are scanning your original documents they do not need to be certified. If you are scanning a copy then it needs to have been certified.

International students making a paper application should have all copies certified.

Can I add additional documents or amend the documents I uploaded after my application was submitted or left incomplete?

Yes, but not online.

If you need to add or amend documents or information for an existing application please email them to and we will attach them to your existing application.

I am a former or current student and need a transcript or other official letter, who do I contact?

You can use the Online Transcript and Official Letter Request form here:

If there is a postage or re-print cost for your request, you will need to pay this via PayPal. Some requests are free, full details of relevant costs are on the form.

Offers & Enrolments

What happens if I accept an offer and later change my mind?

When you accept an offer using the Offer Acceptance and First Time Enrolment Form you will also be officially enrolled in the program. You will be liable to pay or arrange to pay the standard tuition fees by their relevant due dates. If you choose to withdraw you will need to do so before the relevant Census Date. You can find the relevant Census Dates on the Academic Calendar.


The withdrawal form can be obtained here or through the Moodle LMS if you have been granted access. Email the form to for processing.

Can I apply to defer an offer until next year?
Due to the highly competitive nature of our programs each year, deferral is normally only possible on compassionate grounds. Each case would be looked at on its individual merits. If you have been made or have accepted an offer and you think you may need to defer please contact your Course Coordinator or email for further advice.
I have a question about Orientation or O-week?

Details for the 2019 orientation week are still being finalised. The following dates have been reserved for orientation activities. You will have at least one compulsory Welcome Day event prior to classes starting. Other optional events will also run during the weeks prior to classes starting.

Orientation & Welcome Days 2019
MPP/P and Clinical: TBC
Standard, BPsych(Hons) and C&P: TBC
Reorientation & Midyear BPsych(Hons): TBC

RSVP links or ticketing info will be emailed to enrolled students closer to the time.

How much are the tuition fees for each course?
Tuition fees are charge by teaching period on a per unit basis and are subject to reasonable variation each year.





You can find more information about our current and prior years tuition fees on our Fees page.

Can I get FEE-HELP loans for your courses?
Yes, if you are eligible. All of our Higher Education courses are accredited by TEQSA and we are a registered HELP provider meaning that FEE-HELP is available to eligible students who have not reached their FEE-HELP limits.





For more information on the FEE-HELP program and eligibility criteria see

Do you offer CSP places or HECS-HELP?
No, we do not have Commonwealth Supported Places (CSPs). We are a non-university higher education provider accredited through TEQSA. As such we are not eligible for CSP funding.





However, we are a registered FEE-HELP provider. The FEE-HELP loan scheme works in a similar way to the HECS-HELP loan scheme. We suggest that you check out to find out more about FEE-HELP.

For more details about our fees and fee structure, click here.

When will my tuition fees be due?

First time fees for 2019 Semester 1 tuition fee payments or FEE-HELP application forms will be due on 1 March 2019 or one week after your offer acceptance date for waitlisted offers.

Students who are enrolled in the intensive classes, tuition fee payment or FEE-HELP application forms will be due on 15 February 2019.

2019 Semester 2 tuition fees will be due on 26 July 2019.

For more information about tuition fees, click here.

How do I get a FEE-HELP form?

Students who have indicated that they will be paying by FEE-HELP when they accept an offer will be contacted with a range of times to come and collect the FEE-HELP forms from Cairnmillar.

If you are interstate or otherwise unable to collect the forms from the Hawthorn East Campus then it may be possible to post it to you. Instructions for arranging this will be sent out soon after offers close.

FEE-HELP forms for mid-year intakes will be due back in physical copy to Cairnmillar by a date TBC. You only submit the form once for the duration of your studies.

For information about FEE-HELP and FEE-HELP eligibility please see:

My application status is ‘pending’ but the application period is over, what does this mean?
Our system will not update and your application status will not change unless an offer is made. If you have been sent an email to advise that the application period is over or that you were unsuccessful on other grounds, then that outcome stands.

Academic Calendar & Timetable

Do you offer distance or online learning?
No, none of our programs are currently available by distance or online learning.


Some units may be taught or partially taught online but the majority of all programs are taught through on campus instruction with a minimum expectation of 80% attendance.

Do you have evening or weekend classes?
No, all of our classes are run during working hours.
When do classes start for 2019?

The academic calendar is available here

Most courses start on 4 March 2019, with orientation dates TBC during the week prior. Orientation and Welcome Day is normally compulsory, so you may need to start as early as 25 February 2019.

The Master of Professional Psychology (5th year) program starts with a two week intensive on 18 February 2019.

The Master of Psychology (Clinical Psychology) and Doctor of Psychology (Clinical Psychology) start with a 1 week intensive on 25 February 2019.

The specific course and class timetables are not yet available. A detailed provisional timetable will only be provided to applicants only if an offer is made. Most of our courses are full-time and students are expected to make arrangements to be available for classes during work hours.

We try to schedule classes to run on the same day or days of the week to minimise disruption, especially for courses with placements. This is not always possible as a range of factors impact the timetable. In general, you will have one 3-hour class per taught unit you are enrolled in, plus placement and thesis supervision as and if applicable on an individual basis to be arranged with your supervisor/s.  You can ask further questions about the classes for your course and program if you are invited to an interview.

How many classes, contact hours or days of classes will I need to attend?
Timetabling is a complex issue that relies on a number of considerations. If possible we try to ensure that classes are clustered so that students only need to attend the campus one or two days full per week. Courses with a placement or thesis requirement will have additional contact hours and each student timetable will vary.


It should be noted that the final class timetable is subject to change up until the first week of teaching. Course level details are not yet available.

A detailed provisional timetable will be provided to applicants only if an offer is made.

Requests for more information on specific courses or class times may not be answered. If you attend and open day or are shortlisted for an interview you will have an opportunity to ask these questions at that time or before accepting an offer.

Do you have a mid-year intake?

We will be offering a mid-year intake for the Bachelor of Psychology (Honours). Mid-year applications will open on a date TBC.

We are not currently expecting to offer mid-year intakes for any other programs in 2019. If this changes details will be posted here by April.

Where are your programs taught?
All of our Higher Education programs are currently taught in person, at the Hawthorn Campus: 391-393 Tooronga Road, Hawthorn East, Victoria 3123 in Inner East Melbourne.

General Questions

Do you offer 4+2 internship program in psychology?
No, we do not offer any 4+2 internship programs at Cairnmillar.

We do have an integrated 5+1 program starting with the  Master of Professional Psychology and with a potential option to articulate into the Master of Professional Psychology Practice to complete the +1 internship under that program.

What is the difference between the Master of Professional Psychology (5th year) and the Master of Professional Psychology Practice (5+1)?
Please see the Cairnmillar Professional Psychology Info Sheet for more information on our 5+1 programs and Dual Masters options.
Where are the Current Student FAQs?
FAQs for current students are available on Moodle.
I have another question not covered here?

If you have questions not answered above you can use the form below

Please note: if your questions is answered on our FAQ page you may get no answer or a form answer redirecting you to try this page.

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