Prepare for La Trobe

Get a head start at uni

Study three or six micro-subjects in Year 12 or VCAL (Senior), and we’ll use your average mark instead of an ATAR to lead you to your dream course.  It’s 100% free and online.


Your ATAR is just one way to get into university. At La Trobe, our research has shown that there are other ways to predict your success.

That’s why we’ve created Prepare for La Trobe: a pathway to La Trobe where you study micro-subjects that set you up for success in future study.

If you’re a VCE, HSC or IB student, you’ll need to complete three micro-subjects. If you chose VCAL (Senior), you’ll need to complete six micro-subjects. We’ll take your average mark across these subjects and use that to calculate a La Trobe ATAR equivalent.

And if you also receive an ATAR in 2020, we’ll look at your ATAR and at your average mark across your micro-subject and use whichever result is higher to assess your application.

Choose from subjects in writing, reasoning, digital literacy, thinking mathematically, world changing science and more. They’re taken from our Tertiary Preparation Program, - if your ATAR equivalence meets your course entry requirements you won’t need to do the full program. Instead, you’ll start right away on building the foundations you’ll need in your degree. It’s a great way to get ahead before you get here.

Do you want to know more? Contact our Future Students Centre on 1300 135 045, check our FAQs or talk to us via live chat for more information.

Am I eligible?

Prepare for La Trobe is available to all Year 12 students, including ungraded VCE, HSC, IB and VCAL students.

If your Year 12 studies do not include an English or literacy subject we may advise you to undertake more micro-subjects to meet this requirement.

Why is it right for you?

Prepare for La Trobe is an option which will get you on track to study at university. It helps you understand what is required for university study and supports you to make the choices that are right for you.

Our staff will support you every step of the way. And you’ll get access to online orientation, Studiosity and the Learning Hub.

What will it cost?

Prepare at La Trobe is completely free.

How is a micro-subject different from a standard university subject?

Micro subjects are short university preparation subjects. They provide discipline specific knowledge while teaching tertiary level academic skills. Each one consists of approximately 50 hours of learning (including time spent doing assessments) spread over seven weeks.

When can I study my micro-subjects at La Trobe?

Micro-subjects start every eight weeks, so you can study them in July, September, November or even January 2021. This gives you the flexibility to balance Prepare for La Trobe with your schoolwork or other commitments.

Depending on which Prepare for La Trobe pathway you are eligible for, and when you choose to complete your micro-subjects, you will be eligible to apply for entry into La Trobe University in either semester 1 or semester 2 2021.

What courses am I eligible for once I complete Prepare for La Trobe?

VCE, HSC or IB students

If you’re a VCE, HSC or IB student, to complete Prepare for La Trobe you’ll study three micro-subjects:

and two from your preferred stream:

The courses you’ll be eligible to apply for will vary depending on the two stream-specific subjects you select.

If you successfully complete your three micro-subjects in the online study periods commencing in July, September and/or November 2020, you will be eligible to apply for entry into La Trobe University in semester 1 2021.

If you complete some or all of your three micro-subjects in the January 2021 online study period, this may mean that you will not be eligible to apply for entry to La Trobe University until semester 2 2021.

VCAL (Senior) students

If you’re a VCAL (Senior) student, to complete Prepare for La Trobe you’ll study six micro-subjects:

and two from your preferred stream:

The courses you’ll be eligible to apply for will vary depending on the two stream-specific subjects you select.

VCAL (Senior) students who successfully complete the Prepare for La Trobe program by June 2021 will be eligible to apply for entry to La Trobe University for semester 2 2021.

How do I apply?

You should apply direct to La Trobe. You'll be asked to provide a personal statement as part of the application.

When you start your application you'll find that there are three PREPARE' options.

  • If you're a VCE, HSC or IB student looking for a pathway to science, health and engineering courses you should select 'PREPARE (SHE), course code: ETPPO_S
  • If you're a VCE, HSC or IB student looking for a pathway to arts, social sciences and commerce courses you should select 'PREPARE (ASSC), course code: ETPPO_A
  • If you're a VCAL (Senior) student you should select 'PREPARE (VCAL), course code: ETPPO_V
Important dates
  • Study period 5 commences on 7 September. Applications close on 30 August 2020.
  • Study period 6 commences on 2 November. Applications close on 25 October 2020.

Contact our Future Students Centre on 1300 135 045 or talk to us via live chat if you need help or for more information.