Associate Degree in Public Health (specialisation) - CC44

Discover a rewarding career in health promotion or environmental health and make a difference in the community with the Associate Degree of Public Health. Tailor your studies and prepare yourself for a career in public health with the Associate Degree of Public Health (Specialisation). Benefit from the support of experienced public health lecturers and authentic assessments to graduate work-ready.


Online, On Campus


SR:60 ATAR:60




2 years full-time, 4 years part-time


Bundaberg, Cairns, Rockhampton, Townsville, Online


No pre-requisites required


Senior English and a Science subject

Public health refers to a collection of disciplines that share a common aim, to:

  • prevent disease,
  • promote health and
  • improve wellbeing among the population as a whole rather than focusing on individuals.

Public health interventions help advance health and address risks in our local and global communities. The eradication of smallpox, improvements in workplace safety, reduced morbidity from cholera, and decreased trends in tobacco smoking are all examples of public health interventions.

In this course you will develop a broad understanding of evidence-based strategies to address a range of health risks and achieve higher standards of health. Your study emphasises participation, prevention and partnership with the community. Your core units introduce you to foundations of health, the environment, chronic disease and public health interventions. And, you'll have the option to choose a major in health promotion, environmental health or public health nutrition.

Health promotion major

This major sees you gain skills and knowledge of health promotion activities. You'll study topics such as drugs in society, health promotion strategies, indigenous studies and community needs assessment.

Environmental health major

You'll learn to monitor environmental health issues. This includes assisting in conflict resolution between agencies, regulated parties and the communities. Your study topics in microbiology, food safety, environmental science, law and communicable disease control.

Public health nutrition major

In this major you'll build your skills and knowledge to take part in food and nutrition interventions. You'll study topics such as nutrition, community needs assessment, chronic diseases and health promotion.

As a graduate, you'll have relevant skills and knowledge to work in emerging roles in non-traditional public health areas. Your training also prepares you for technical and project support positions. These positions may be within government, non-government and private industry.

You will also have the option to continue your studies and complete the Bachelor of Public Health (Specialisation), allowing to further enhance your future career prospects.

Core Units 7 Major Units 7
Electives None Minor Units None

Course structure

You are required to complete seven core units and either one seven-unit major in environmental health or health promotion, or a nine-unit major in public health nutrition.

Unit information

For information on the units, you could study as part of this course, visit the Handbook and select the "Course Structure" tab.

Credit transfer information

If you have already completed study relevant to the course you have enrolled in, you may be eligible for credit transfer.

Become a leader in improving the health of communities and the wider population with a public health course at CQUniversity.

You will experience the latest in learning technology, and through simulations, real project work and enhanced work-integrated-learning opportunities to ensure you have the skills, knowledge and experience to make real change and prevent disease in populations.

You will be supported by experienced public health lecturers who are invested in providing you with authentic, work-based learning opportunities so that you graduate work-ready. Gain real insights and knowledge from a teaching team with recent and relevant experience in the many facets of public health. Our public health teaching team have industry experience having worked as health promotion officers, environmental health officers and public health nutritionists in Queensland Health, local government, not-for-profits and private industry.

Your career in public health

A public health course at CQUniversity will open the door to diverse careers across Australia and internationally.

Health Promotion

If you choose to study health promotion you will work with community, industry, business and government to educate people to make healthy choices. You will have the skills, knowledge and experience to work on projects and programs in a range of areas and settings such as infant feeding, maternal health, child health, chronic disease prevention, Aboriginal health, food supply, food security, or overseas development and more.

Environmental Health

As an environmental health graduate, you will be able to work in local, state and federal government, in overseas aid, the military (including the army and air force as an environmental health officer) as well as in private industry. You’ll work on projects related to the environmental impacts on human health such as safe drinking water, safe food, clean air, healthy housing, disaster management, areas impacted by changing environments, and settlement planning to improve health, to prevent injury and disease.

Public Health Nutrition

Students majoring in Public Health Nutrition will learn to apply relevant theoretical knowledge and participate in food and nutrition interventions through working under supervision in accordance with relevant industry competencies. Studies will include topics in nutrition, community needs assessment, chronic diseases and health promotion.

On-Campus Availability

Term 1 - 2024Bundaberg, Cairns, Rockhampton, Townsville
Term 2 - 2023Bundaberg, Cairns, Rockhampton, Townsville
Term 2 - 2024Bundaberg, Cairns, Rockhampton, Townsville

Online Availability

Term 1 - 2024Available Online
Term 2 - 2023Available Online
Term 2 - 2024Available Online
Environmental Health7

Currently there is no accreditation available for an environmental health course at Associate Degree level. The curriculum has, however, been designed to meet the requirements of the enHealth Skills and Knowledge Matrix and will be eligible for accreditation should it become available through Environmental Health Australia in future.

Health Promotion7
Public Health Nutrition9
Unit NameCodeDescription
Community Engaged LearningHLTH12031This unit is compulsory for Health Promotion majors only. HLTH12031 is a service-learning unit, where students spend 25 hours volunteering in the community. The content and assessment are highly reflective, with the aim being to help students build an understanding of a salutary approach to health.
Compulsory residential schools are required for students enrolled in the following units: - ENVH12001 Food Safety - MBIO19012 Microbiology - PBHL12001 Communicable Disease & Public Health Some electives may have compulsory residential schools. Students are advised to check the handbook and Unit Profile prior to enrolment.

Rank Threshold

A rank threshold is the minimum competitive rank that applications will be considered for entry to this course. 

The rank threshold for this course is: SR 60 | ATAR 60.0

Student profile

If you would like to know more about entry scores for applicants with recent secondary education and the student profile for this course view our Course and Entry Score Profile for Term 1, 2022.

Institute profile

To find out about CQUniversity's Undergraduate Profile for Term 1, 2022 view our Institute Profile.

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement

The COVID-19 vaccination is mandatory to be eligible to attend a WIL placement for this course. Students will be required to provide evidence of having completed a COVID-19 vaccination schedule by the closing date prior to a WIL placement. The vaccine received must be a vaccine approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) of Australia.

Entry Requirements

English Language Proficiency Requirements

If you were not born in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Ireland, South Africa or United States of America, you are required to meet the English Language Proficiency requirements set by the University.

Applicants are required to provide evidence of completion of:

  • A secondary qualification (Year 11 and 12, or equivalent), or
  • An Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) diploma level qualification, or
  • Bachelor level qualification study for a period of at least 2 years fulltime with a minimum overall GPA 4.0

completed within Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, South Africa, Ireland, or United States of America, which will meet the English proficiency.

If you do not satisfy any of the above, you will need to undertake an English language proficiency test and achieve the following scores:

  • An International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic) overall band score of at least 6.0 with a minimum 5.5 in each subset; or
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) - Requires 550 or better overall and minimum TWE score of 4.5 (Paper Based Test), or 75 or better overall and no score less than 17 (Internet Based Test); or
  • Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic) - Requires an overall score of 54 with no sub-score less than 46; or
  • An Occupational English Test with Grades A or B only in each of the four components.

English test results remain valid for no more than two years between final examination date and the date of commencement of study, and must appear on a single result certificate.

If you are an international student, visit our international student information for more details.

Each student will be assessed individually.

Security Requirements

No requirements

Health Requirements

No requirements

Assumed Knowledge

Senior English and a Science subject.

Completion of the Associate Degree of Public Health (Specialisation) will prepare you to pursue employment opportunities in public health such as:

  • Environmental Health Officer
  • Health Promotion Officer
  • Environmental Health Technical Officer.

This degree may also be of interest if you are currently working in administrative support roles in the public health field and wish to advance in the profession. As a graduate of the Associate Degree in Public Health you may like to pathway into our Bachelor of Public Health (Specialisation).

Professional recognition is not applicable to this course.
2023 Indicative Fees
Fee TypeFees
Commonwealth Supported Place – Indicative First Year Fee$8,734.00

Indicative first-year fee

The fees listed are indicative only and based on enrolling in a full-time study load for one academic year for a Commonwealth Supported Place. Your fees may vary depending on the units you select and the number you study per term. Fees are reviewed annually and are subject to change. Understanding your fees.

Commonwealth support and government assistance loans

Commonwealth Supported Places (CSPs) are subsidised by the Australian Government, meaning you are only required to pay the student contribution rather than full tuition fees if you meet eligibility requirements. If offered a CSP, you may be eligible for a HECS-HELP government loan. HECS-HELP is an Australian Government loan scheme that assists you in paying your student contributions. Provided you meet the HECS-HELP eligibility criteria, you may use HECS-HELP to defer part or all of your student contribution fees.  Learn more about paying for university.

Other study costs

Part of your course costs includes Student Services and Amenities Fees (SSAF). There may also be additional costs as part of your studies, such as textbooks, technology expenses, travel expenses, professional certifications, uniforms, or vaccinations. Explore other study costs.

At CQUniversity, we believe higher education should be for everyone. No matter your situation, we know that everyone needs a helping hand from time to time, and we are proud to offer a wide range of scholarships, bursaries and stipends.
Our scholarships could help you pay for things like relocation, living on campus, laptops and technology, childcare, study and living expenses, travel and more. 

VictoriaONL: 1700110451
New South WalesONL: 160601
QueenslandONL: 851445; TVL: 801441; ROK: 851441; CNS: 821441; BDG: 811441
Western AustraliaONL: 150601

If you apply via a Tertiary Admissions Centre (TAC) listed under 'How to Apply', please use the relevant TAC code listed above to complete your application.

If you have decided what you would like to study and are ready to apply, we’re here to help you along the way. Before you apply, you will need to have a Unique Student Identifier (USI). If you do not have a USI, creating one is quick and easy. Simply visit to create one.

Want to know more about application dates and other admission information?
View our important dates information and read about other admission considerations such as information for domestic students with overseas qualifications, indigenous support, and elite athlete, coach and performer support.

What’s the best way to apply?

  • Option 1: Ideal for most situations, whether you have completed high school recently or some time ago.
  • Option 2: Ideal if you have previously studied with CQUni.

Option 1: Ideal for most situations, apply via a tertiary admission centre

View the table below for the best application option based on where you live.

If you live in Tertiary Admissions Centre (TAC)*
Queensland Apply via QTAC
New South Wales; Australian Capital Territory Apply via UAC
All other states Apply via ApplyCQUNI

*Please note that you may be required to pay a fee when applying via a TAC.

Option 2: If you have previously studied with CQUni, apply direct.

As a past CQUni student, you may be eligible to apply directly to CQUniversity for this course. To apply direct, your prior study with CQUni must be a completed or partially completed CQUni course or unit including:
  • CQUni’s Skills for Tertiary Entrance Preparatory Studies (STEPS), Tertiary Entrance Program (TEP), or Start Uni Now (SUN) units.
  • A CQUni certificate, diploma, advanced diploma, associate degree, bachelor degree, graduate certificate, graduate diploma, master or research higher degree, or a unit within these courses.
Apply direct