Science (CDF) - 4463

Program Summary

Faculty: UNSW Canberra at ADFA

Contact: UNSW Canberra, Student Administrative Services

Campus: UNSW Canberra at ADFA

Career: Undergraduate

Typical Duration: 3 Years  

Typical UOC Per Semester: 24

Min UOC Per Semester: 6

Max UOC Per Semester: 24

Min UOC For Award: 144

Domestic Entry Requirements: See Domestic Entry Requirements

International Entry Requirements: See International Entry Requirements


Bachelor of Science (Major)

View program information for previous years

Program Description

The Chief of Defence Force Students (CDFS) Programs in Arts, Business, Engineering, Science and Technology - Aeronautical offer the opportunity for students entering UNSW Canberra with a high Entrance Rank, and who maintain a high level of performance in their studies, to undertake research in a range of disciplines that will develop their critical thinking and independent research skills beyond that available in the standard Bachelor Degree programs.

The range of CDFS Programs, described in detail in the following sections, is characterised by the inclusion of specialist courses in critical analysis and/or research methods appropriate to the area of study. All programs also include discipline-specific research projects. The research projects will be supervised by academic staff from the relevant discipline. With the approval of the relevant Heads of Schools, multi- or cross-disciplinary projects may be undertaken. Students in the research courses may work independently or as part of a team, depending on the nature of the project undertaken, though all students will submit individual assessment. Final assessment will be based on a written paper or report and oral presentations.

Throughout the program, and in addition to completing the courses given in the following schedules, students will be engaged with cohort activities so as to develop and maintain their interest and continuing involvement in the program via invited lectures, seminars, general reading and social events.

The CDFS Programs are of three-years’ duration in Arts, Business, Science and Technology - Aeronautical.

A separate honours year may be undertaken. The programs in Engineering are all of four-years’ duration and are awarded with Honours.

Program Objectives and Graduate Attributes

Each of the CDFS Programs has objectives and learning outcomes in common with the standard Bachelor degree in the same area, but extends the educational principles embodied in the standard degree to a higher level. In the programs, students will be exposed to courses in critical analysis and/or research methods in the discipline(s) of their chosen program, which will offer significant extensions to the ideas and analysis normally available in the standard degree program. This will allow all CDFS to successfully undertake research-oriented courses at the appropriate level through their program, thereby integrating research into their studies in a way that is not available in the standard degree. The individual projects undertaken in close association with academic staff on research topics of mutual interest underpin the CDFS Programs and give students the ability to develop their full potential.

Program Structure

The following disciplines are available in the BSc (CDF):
  • Aviation
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Science
  • Geography
  • Mathematics
  • Oceanography
  • Physics
Major 1
Major 2
Electives/ Prescribed Electives
General Education
Yr 1 S1
(free elective)
Yr 1 S2
ZPEM1901 or ZEIT1901
Yr 2 S1
ZPEM2312 or ZINT2100 (prescribed elective)
Yr 2 S2
ZPEM2901 or ZEIT2901
Yr 3 S1
12 UOC
ZPEM3901* or ZEIT3901*
Yr 3 S2
12 UOC
ZPEM3902+ or ZEIT3902+
42 *
42 +
* This course will be counted towards Science Major 1.
+ This course will be counted towards Science Major 2.

Academic Rules

Faculty Regulations for Undergraduate Students

A student must comply with the Faculty Regulations for Undergraduate Students. In the event of a conflict, the rules for the Bachelor of Science (Chief of Defence Force) program take precedence over the Faculty Regulations for Undergraduate Students.

Transfer to CDF Students Programs

A candidate enrolled in a standard Bachelor of Science program may, at the discretion of the relevant Head of School, transfer to the CDF Student Program in the same degree area upon completion of a minimum of 24 UOC in either semester of the Year 1 program with a semester-based Weighted Average Mean (WAM) equal to or greater than 85. The latest date by which candidates may transfer to the CDF Student Program in the same degree area is for the commencement of Semester 1 of the Year 2 program.

Progression through CDFS Program

To continue as a candidate in the CDF Student Program, a candidate shall normally achieve a semester-based Weighted Average Mean (WAM) equal to or greater than 85. Candidature shall be reviewed at the end of each academic semester. The relevant Head(s) of School may exercise discretion in decisions relating to candidature.

Credit Transfer

A candidate transferring between the CDF Student Program and the standard Bachelor of Science program in the same degree area will be granted credit for all courses successfully completed.

Degree Requirements

1. To qualify for the degree of Bachelor of Science (CDF), a candidate shall normally be enrolled for a minimum of six semesters and gain a minimum of 144 UOC, normally 24 units in each full-time semester.

2. A candidate completing the program shall complete courses, in the years prescribed as set out in the relevant schedule.

3. Before a candidate’s enrolment will be accepted for any course, the candidate must have completed the relevant pre-requisite courses shown in the Course Catalogue, except where the Course Authority for the appropriate course approves otherwise.

4. A candidate for the BSc (CDF) shall complete courses as set out in the Program Structure below.

Program Rules

1. The BSc program must include courses totalling no less than 144 UOC.

2. Students must select two Science discipline areas in which they will major. Each major consists of courses totalling 48 UOC with at least 36 UOC from Level 2 and 3 courses, and with at least 18 UOC at Level 3.

3. Students must complete four designated CDF courses as identified in the Program Structure below.

4. Students must complete at least one of the prescribed elective courses ZPEM2312 Fundamentals of Data Analysis or ZINT2100 Introduction to Cyber-Security: Policy and Operations. These two courses do not count towards the students’ 96 UOC for their Science discipline area.

Exclusion: Students who complete ZPEM1301 Mathematics 1A or ZPEM1303 Engineering Mathematics 1A will be exempt from ZPEM2312, and must complete ZINT2100 in semester 1 of their second year of study.

5. Students are able to include a course from Business, Engineering or Arts in the program, subject to timetabling constraints in Semester 1 of their first year of study.

6. Students are required to include 12 UOC of General Education courses, taken in the second year of study.

7. No more than 48 UOC may be gained for Level I courses.

8. At least 96 UOC must be taken from Upper-Level courses.


For information regarding fees for UNSW programs, please refer to the following website:  UNSW Fee Website.

Faculty Regulations for Undergraduate Students

Related Program(s)

4410 Science
4513 Science (Honours)