BlogUniversityWhat It’s Like Studying a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU

What It’s Like Studying a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU

ACU Bachelor of Nursing Degree Fact Sheet

Are you considering studying a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU? Could you be the next friendly face patients will look up to see as their nurse?

We’ve compiled all you need to know about the degree, including info about requirements, subjects, uni culture and more! 

Have a read below!

What is a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU?
Core Units for this Degree
How to Get into a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU
What’s the Teaching Format?
What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?

What is a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU?

A Bachelor of Nursing at ACU is a degree that will gives students the skills and knowledge to become a well-rounded nurse. The delivering of this course combines both practical and theoretical elements to provide students with a holistic experience of what nursing entails. 

Taking on a nursing degree at this university is highly beneficial, as ACU boasts being Australia’s largest supplier of nurses. Students engage in clinical practice every semester throughout the course of their studies within the Integrating Practice unit, which imparts a better understanding of the theory absorbed.

Who should study a Bachelor of Nursing?

There’s often a misconception that nursing is a role that is only carried out by females, but this is a dated stereotype that should be quelled! If you are passionate about providing hands-on care and an advocate for health and wellbeing, you will thrive within a nursing degree. 

Can you study this degree in conjunction with another?

The Bachelor of Nursing at ACU can be studied as a dual degree. Popular additions to the Bachelor of Nursing include Paramedicine or Business Administration.

The Bachelor of Nursing also has the potential to be explored as Honours. Find more info about Double Degrees and Honours here

What are the options for postgraduate courses?

Once students have completed a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU, they’ll have the opportunity to apply for graduate entry programs, such as a Bachelor of Midwifery.

Units from the prior studied nursing degree can move across as credit points for the Bachelor of Midwifery! This means that with an additional two years of study, students will be able to have this qualification

ACU Nursing - Student Quote

Check out more about postgraduate nursing study specialisations here

Career Paths

Career paths for this degree are wide and varied within the nursing industry. This degree can lead to jobs within:

  • Aged care nursing
  • Community care nursing
  • Medical/surgical nursing
  • Mental health nursing
  • Paediatric nursing

Learn about what it’s like working as a registered nurse here!

Core Units for this Degree

Compulsory Religious Units

ACU is different from most mainstream universities as it is a Catholic university. You don’t need to be Catholic or even religious to study here, but it should be noted that there are two compulsory core unit subjects taken in the first and third year that have a focus on religion. 

Students also have the opportunity to study these subjects in Rome as an exchange as an intensive over four weeks, rather than doing it over the whole semester! ACU understands religion and religious study are not everyone’s cup of tea. 

Nursing Core Units

There are units you have to take specific to a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU, such as Health Care Ethics. In this unit, students learn to ensure the wellbeing of future patients or clients, building upon the understanding of the notions of human dignity and the common good, as well as interpret the idea of ethical integrity.

Additionally, you’ll have to study Principles of Nursing: Mental Health. In this subject, the role of the Registered Nurse will be considered across a variety of mental health settings and include study across the lifespan, legal and ethical issues, the impact of mental health conditions and vulnerability for individuals who experience a mental health-related illness.

Other core units for the degree include, Transition into Nursing, Indigenous Health and Culture and Human Biological Science. 

Are there built-in placements?

Each semester, students will embark on a placement in a medical facility. Placements are organised by facilitators, who have student’s addresses and will accommodate students by assigning them as close to home as possible.

Students can be assigned in a wide variety of placements. Clinical placement areas include:

  • Aged care
  • Community nursing
  • High dependency nursing
  • Medical/surgical nursing
  • Mental health nursing
  • Paediatrics
  • Palliative care
  • Perioperative nursing

Facilitators will be able to answer any questions or assist you in any way while on placement. They are generally there every day.

How to Get into A Bachelor of Nursing at ACU

The ATAR cut off for this degree is an ATAR of 63. However, there are alternate pathways to get into this degree at ACU!

There are a range of different admissions schemes to help students achieve their goals of studying. Some of the schemes include the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Entry Program, Community Achiever Program, ACU Guarantee and Schools Recommendation Scheme

Find more information about all of these admissions schemes here

Are there any prerequisites?

To get into a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU, there are no prerequisite subjects or prior exams to gain admission to this course.

What scholarships are available?

The university offers a range of scholarships for many of their courses and disciplines! Before you apply for a scholarship at ACU, they ask you to consider your eligibility thoroughly.

However, they do encourage applicants and don’t want this to stop you from having a go! Find out what’s on offer, how to apply and more here

Learn about the top universities for a Nursing degree in Australia here!

What’s the Teaching Format?

ACU North Sydney follows the semester teaching format, meaning that there are two teaching period blocks each year with breaks in-between. 

Class Structure

ACU Nursing - Class Structure

In a lecture, you can expect to be presented with theories and concepts elaborated upon by your lecturer. The auditorium may be filled with more than 100 students and you’ll be taught 2 hours worth of content.

Tutorials typically happen after the lecture and run for 1 to 2 hours, with tutors reinforcing the information presented in the lecture. With 25 students to a class, students have the chance to ask more questions, collaborate with other students, complete activities and class work! 

Practical classes, with up to 25 students, teach nursing students actual skills required within the industry. They increase in difficulty as the degree goes on, starting with methods of cleaning patients to wound care and needle application! 

In addition to practical classes, students are taken out of the classroom for 2 weeks and get exposure to real life situations through their placement, so they can hone their skills learned in the classroom. Students will be placed with a ‘buddy’ nurse who shows them the ropes and helps them gain confidence in their skill area! 

In your classes at ACU, you can anticipate that it will be super hands on. With small classes, you will be able to get a really good one on one experience with your tutors throughout your study.

What are assessments like?

The type of assessments vary from class to class. However, these are some types of assessments you can expect from a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU: assignments, essays, online quizzes weekly, and exams at the end of the semester.

Assignments can be on many different topics, ranging from the body, ethics of patient care, to even legalities of treating a patient! There is a large scope of acquired knowledge crucial for a nurse needs to understand.

Quizzes can have a practical element, where students have to show off their skills on other students or even dummies. Exams can involve writing about content learned in that semester!

Skills That You Refine and Learn


Skills that you will develop as a student of a Bachelor of Nursing at ACU are ones that will not only aid you as a nurse, but can be applied to day to day life as well.  

When commencing your studies as a nurse, you will quickly learn the importance of critical thinking. To be able to make split decisions while remembering the correct protocol is essential for the safety and well-being of patients. 

To be a nurse, you must be able to empathise and have compassion with patients – even if they have been bugging you all day with seemingly menial requests, you must uphold a professional and kind attitude. 

Communication and teamwork are imperative as a nurse as you need to be able to communicate updates on a patient’s condition to family members, doctors, and even nurses relieving you on shift. Accidentally forgetting to tell someone or document something like doses of medications can cause an upset to your team and even put patients in danger! 

What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?

The culture between the staff and students are very tight-knit and very personalised due to the smaller campus environment. 

At ACU, there is a relatively smaller community of teaching staff for the Bachelor of Nursing. The Nursing, Paramedicine and Midwifery cohort are all together for some subjects, with some tutors and lecturers interchanging between them.

The vibe exuded at ACU is warm and welcoming. Older students and alumni are more than willing to help out and teachers are just an email or phone call away!  


There are a number of societies that you can join to really make the most of the uni lifestyle. One society relevant to ACU Nursing is the ACU North Sydney Nursing Discussion Group, which is a Facebook group that encourages students past and present to share experiences, questions, tips and tricks with each other!  

The university also runs the ACU Life-Hacker Mentorship. This mentorship encourages first-year students on the Autism spectrum to be paired up and mentored by students in the grades above!

Through this program, mentors bestow their mentees a friend, tips, and help them achieve long term and short term goals! Not to mention, there are also board games and social gatherings often.

Interested in the pros and cons of this degree? Check out our article here!

Matilda Elliott is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and a Communication graduate with a major in Journalism at Western Sydney University. You can find some of her published work in a range of platforms including SBS World News, The Music Network and within her own creative exploits with her twin sister. Matilda is a lover of listening, helping people to tell their stories, making genuine connections, clowning around in her circus troupe and dancing like no one is watching at live music shows!

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