Indigenous Higher Education Pathways Program

University of Southern Queensland USQ

If students do not have the right school qualifications or it has been some time since they studied, USQ's Indigenous Higher Education Pathways Program (IHEPP) is the perfect way to start studying at university. This pathway program has been developed to give Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people the academic skills needed for university study. Students will study 3 or 6 courses (subjects), all with an Indigenous focus, to develop your writing, maths, general study and computing skills.

Entry Requirements:

To be eligible for admission, applicants must satisfy the following requirements: Applicants must have reached an age of at least 18 years in the year of the proposed enrolment and verify as being of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent. Applicants are required to complete a placement test and attend an interview. All students are required to satisfy the applicable English language requirements. If students do not meet the English language requirements they may apply to study a University-approved English language program. On successful completion of the English language program, students may be admitted to an award program.


3 or 6 courses (subjects)

Subjects you can Study:

Students will be guided into either a one-semester or two-semester strand based on entry assessment. The one-semester strand comprises of two compulsory core courses that are 4 SA equivalent, Walking the walk: applying tertiary skills and Academic conventions and Indigenous research methodologies and a third which is an approved course, Mathematics as Storytelling. The two-semester strand comprises, in the first semester, the preliminary courses Talking the talk: claiming your voice within Academia, Learning the lingo: academic writing and Keeping on track: academic skills. Successful completion of the preliminary courses provides a pathway to the compulsory core courses, Walking the walk: applying tertiary skills and Academic conventions and Indigenous research methodologies in the second semester. For students wanting to go into engineering, early childhood and primary education, construction, and surveying, the recommended enrolment pattern is Walking the walk: applying tertiary skills, Academic conventions and Indigenous research methodologies and Mathematics Tertiary Preparation 1 or Mathematics Tertiary Preparation 2.

Further information:

Students will be guided into either a one-semester or two-semester strand based on entry assessment. Students may undertake the program on a part-time basis. For students who are required to undertake preliminary courses, they must successfully complete those courses before undertaking the compulsory core courses. A condition of entry to particular undergraduate programs may also require the successful completion of (an) additional course(s) available through USQ's Open Access College (OAC). Enrolment in IHEPP requires students to attend a Residential School to complete the course requirements. It is highly recommended that students attend the Residential School. Financial support may also be available for ABSTUDY recipients to assist with travel expenses. Following the Residential School the remainder of the program is completed online. Students will attend class sessions every day during Residential School. All sessions are compulsory and are designed to assist students with their study and assessments during the Semester. Duration: 6-8 months full-time or 12-18 months part-time.


The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) is a single national, comprehensive system of qualifications offered by higher education institutions (including universities), vocational education and training institutions and secondary schools. Each AQF qualification has a set of descriptors which define the type and complexity of knowledge, skills and application of knowledge and skills that a graduate who has been awarded that qualification has attained, and the typical volume of learning associated with that qualification type. This program is at AQF Qualification Level 04. Graduates at this level will have theoretical and practical knowledge and skills for specialised and/or skilled work and/or further learning. The full set of levels criteria and qualification type descriptors can be found by visiting

Related Careers:

Education Aide,
Campus ATAR/OP Adjusted Mid Year Intake Study Mode Duration
Toowoomba No info Yes Online 0.5-1.5 years

Why study with us

Redefining flexible and online study, we are determined to prepare you for today’s competitive workforce. We make it easier for you to fit study into your life and will support you through the challenges that life and study bring. 

Study options

Studying on-campus at one of our three locations (Toowoomba, Springfield and Ipswich) is a rewarding way to undertake a university degree in an innovative and friendly environment. Or, you can join more than 70 per cent of our students who choose to study online with us. There is also the option to fast-track most degrees by studying over summer.

We offer degrees in:

  • Business and Commerce
  • Creative Arts and Media
  • Education
  • Engineering and Built Environment
  • Health and Community
  • Humanities and Communication
  • Information Technology
  • Law and Justice
  • Sciences. 

If you’re looking to gain the skills and confidence to prepare for university study, look no further than one of our pathway programs.  

Make this year the start of something great with Queensland’s number one university for graduates in full-time employment*. With the option to study online or on campus, full-time or part-time, we’re ready to help you on your path to become more. 

Good Universities Guide, 2018.


We develop research solutions that deliver global impact. Our researchers are found in the field, working alongside our partners to develop solutions that can be applied directly to industry and community. Our areas of research focus include:  

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Fax: +61 7 4635 9225 
Opening hours: 8.00am - 5.00pm (AEST) 
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