BlogUniversityUniversity Pathways: What is UTS College?

University Pathways: What is UTS College?

Although you have a degree in mind but haven’t met the ATAR cut-off, don’t fret because there are many alternate pathways! UTS College offers many pathway programs to popular UTS Bachelor programs such as its Communication, Engineering and Business courses. 

We’ve called upon the help of Marvin, a Communication graduate who started out studying a Diploma of Communication, to know what UTS College is all about.

Interested in knowing what programs are offered and what they’re like? Then, keep reading on! 

What is UTS College?
Why should you study at UTS College?
Other Programs Offered
What’s a Diploma of Communication Like?

What is UTS College?

UTS College is the part of UTS that offers pathway options, from diplomas that guarantee entry into Bachelor’s programs, English Language programs, Foundation studies to Pre-Masters programs. These study options are designed to fill any knowledge gaps students have, whether that’s in their Academic English, topics within their discipline or both! 

Why should you study at UTS College?

UTS College is a great option for anyone seeking a non-ATAR pathway to their desired UTS degree.

The diplomas introduce the same units as the first-year units of the relevant UTS degree, while allowing you to set your own learning pace and have more in-class engagement with the content. This works to really comprehend the subject material! 

UTS College - Quote


Most UTS Diploma programs guarantee entry into the second year of the relevant UTS degree, so long as you meet the required GPA for that degree.

With the option to study the diploma over 8 months, 12 months or 16 months, you can pace yourself and cater to your own learning speed. You’ll also get the advantage of studying in a small class size, where every Diploma class is capped to 20 students in one tutorial. 

To get into any Diploma, the only requirement is a HSC average of 67%. 

What Diplomas can you study?

UTS College - Diplomas

There are six diplomas offered at UTS:

While the Diploma of Communication, Diploma of Design & Architecture, Diploma of Engineering and Diploma of Information Technology fast-tracks you to specific UTS degrees, other diplomas offer various UTS courses.

A Diploma of Business offers entry to a Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Economics, Bachelor of Management and a Bachelor of Property Economics. 

In addition, a Diploma of Science offers entry to all its Life, Mathematical and Physical Sciences programs!

English Language Programs, UTS Foundation Studies and Pre-Master’s Programs (International Students only)

The English Language programs and Pre-Master’s programs are exclusively for international students, and they respectively offer pathways to designated Bachelor and Master’s programs.

For example, a student can study the Academic English for Diploma program in order to get into their Diploma program. The same goes for Pre-Master’s programs such as the Graduate Certificate in Accounting and Finance is studied to get into a Master of Finance or a Master of Professional Accounting

The UTS Foundation Studies is a great option for international students as it even offers entry into the UTS diplomas, health degrees, and even the UTS Law program! 

What’s a Diploma of Communication Like? 

A Diploma of Communication is studied by those who want to work in a field that mixes the creative with the corporate such as public relations, journalism, writing and film. As Marvin tells us, “It’s the best of both worlds.”

In this Diploma, you can choose to study the public relations “stream” or the digital and social media stream. 

If you continue to pursue those majors when studying the Bachelor of Communication at UTS, you can fast-track into the second year of the degree; however, if you decide to diversify into other majors, you’ll enter the first year of the degree but with a reduced study load. 

Core Units for this Diploma

UTS College - Core Units

Whichever your stream, there are five core units in the Diploma of Communication. These are: 

Citizenship and Communication and Digital Literacies introduce you to the basis of what communication is.

Citizenship and Communication teaches the fundamentals of what makes a society, the duties of a citizen and the possibilities of social change through civic participation. Digital Literacies is more creative, where you’ll learn the fundamentals of digital publishing, image production and compositing.

Further, Digital Communities explores the basics of target markets as well as how and why digital consumers act the way they do. 

What’s the Teaching Format?

The Diploma of Communication is studied in semesters. However, you can choose to finish the program in two semesters, stretch it out to four semesters, or meet in the middle by completing the program in three semesters. 

Since UTS Diploma offers a much more personalised learning approach, most classes are tutorials that are 2-hours long.

For Marvin, he especially enjoyed this learning style and comments, “They’re really hands on and thoroughly explain each concept — they don’t just read the slides, they actually have experience in the subject and try their best to relay that to the students.”

Activities can vary upon the unit. For example, Citizenship and Communication is more presentation-oriented where you create products related to content ideation. On the other hand, Digital Communities is more class-oriented where each student discusses their interpretation of the required readings.

Regardless of what you do in class, Diploma classes are structured in a way that provides students with a foundation, which is later built upon by learning more advanced courses in your degree! 


Most assessments are the same as assessments in first-year Communication units. The main two assessments include written assignments and projects.

Written assignments can include writing an annotated bibliography, essays, reflection journals or anything that engages with the theoretical side of the content. For example, an essay on a chosen issue relating to civic participation is written in Citizenship and Communication. They can often weigh 20% to 40%. 

Projects are usually the final assessment of the unit where students creatively apply their theory to a practical situation. For example, in Digital Literacies, students individually complete a student blog consisting of the unit content and creating digital images.

In Citizenship and Communication, you’ll create a board-game related to civic participation. These often weigh about 60%, but you are given most of the semester to work on them! 

Contact Hours

The contact hours for a Diploma of Communication varies slightly on your pacing option. However, when completing three units per semester, the contact hours are around 10 hours. 

What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?

While UTS does not have much of a society culture, you can meet a lot of like-minded people in your class, which is equally as enriching. The small class sizes make it perfect to form new and long-lasting connections (so long as you put in the effort to socialise!). 

As for the Communication teaching staff, Marvin tells us, “They not only treat you with respect but also tell you whether you can improve or straight up just do better.”

In addition, he recommends volunteering at UTS College, such as becoming student helpers, in-class peer helpers, or mentors for international students. 

There you have it!

UTS College offers an exceptional non-ATAR pathway to your dreams that takes off the stress of transitioning to university and ensures you’re introduced to an in-depth learning style to higher-level education.

As a final note, Marvin tells us, “UTS college offers more than just a Diploma at the end of the day. If you really put the time into it, you’ll see that it’s just as, if not more, beneficial to start off building yourself up to a Bachelor’s degree rather than rushing into uni fresh from high school.” 

If you’re thinking of applying to UTS College, you can learn more about the application process here!

Lynn Chen is a Content Writer at Art of Smart Education and is a Communication student at UTS with a major in Creative Writing. Lynn’s articles have been published in Vertigo, The Comma, and Shut Up and Go. In her spare time, she also writes poetry.

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