Skills for Tertiary Education Preparatory Studies (STEPS)

Studying STEPS - Testimonial from Student Katie Magill Transcript

Whether you are returning to study after some time away or need to meet prerequisite subjects for entry into your desired degree, CQUniversity's STEPS course is the perfect option to build your confidence and help you succeed at university.

STEPS is a free enabling course that provides a pathway for you to gain entry to and excel in higher education. For more than 35 years, our STEPS bridging course has helped students into a wide range of courses from our flagship health courses, nursing and paramedic science, to engineering, psychology, teaching and many more.

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Applying for STEPS

Your first step towards applying for STEPS requires you to submit your application online to CQUniversity. Once you have submitted your application, you will complete our diagnostic testing to gauge your literacy, numeracy and computing competence. Following this benchmark testing, a STEPS Coordinator will contact you to arrange an interview to finalise your application. Click on the tiles below to find more detailed information on the application process, eligibility and upcoming information sessions.

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STEPS is suitable for you if you want to undertake tertiary study and may:

  • be returning to study or work after some time away
  • need to meet prerequisite subjects for your desired diploma or degree
  • want some additional support to gain the knowledge, skills and confidence to successfully enter and undertake further study.

STEPS is designed for students who do not already hold an undergraduate qualification. If you already hold an undergraduate qualification, please contact the STEPS admin team who can advise you on possible study options.

If you were not born in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK, Ireland, South Africa or the USA, please note that STEPS does not meet the English Language Proficiency requirements for CQUniversity undergraduate courses. You will be required to meet the English Language Proficiency requirements set by the University prior to admission to an undergraduate course.

View the STEPS brochure.

Upon successful completion of STEPS, you can apply for entry to a CQUniversity diploma or degree course through the CQUniversity direct entry process (for those courses where direct entry is available). View the Requirements for Direct Entry. Alternatively, you can apply through the Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) or other state-based university admissions centres for courses at CQUniversity or other institutions.

CQUniversity students who are currently undertaking coursework degrees can also enrol in STEPS units to upskill in certain areas. Enrolment is established on the outcome of close collaboration between the student, the student's undergraduate unit lecturer(s), the relevant STEPS access coordinator and, in some instances, the student counsellor. The student's current or planned unit load as well as the student's particular upskilling needs will be taken into consideration when establishing an individual study plan.

STEPS can be studied at:

  • CQUniversity Brisbane, 160 Ann Street, Brisbane
  • CQUniversity Bundaberg, University Drive, Bundaberg
  • CQUniversity Cairns, Cairns Square, Corner Abbott and Shields Street, Cairns
  • CQUniversity Gladstone Marina, Bryan Jordan Drive, Gladstone
  • CQUniversity Mackay Ooralea, Boundary Road, Mackay
  • CQUniversity Rockhampton North, Bruce Highway, Rockhampton
  • CQUniversity Townsville, 538 Flinders Street, Townsville
  • Geraldton University Centre, 33 Onslow Street, Geraldton

STEPS can also be studied by online study.

  • Term 1 (On-campus, online study)
  • Term 2 (On-campus, online study)
  • Term 3 (online study ONLY)

For specific term dates, please see our Events and Key Dates

The course takes between one and six terms to complete, with two terms being average. Each term is approximately four months in duration. Completion time depends on the results of your diagnostic entrance assessment, the time you have available for study, and the requirements of the undergraduate course you wish to enter.

The STEPS course is FREE of tuition fees, however, there are minimal costs associated with textbooks, stationery, photocopying and printing.

STEPS is a Centrelink approved course. You may be eligible for various forms of financial support while undertaking the course. For more information visit their website (current link correct).

As a STEPS graduate you can apply for scholarships to assist with the financial cost of study. Find out more about CQUniversity’s scholarships.

The STEPS course aims to provide you with the confidence, knowledge and skills needed to begin a university degree. If you do need extra support while studying STEPS, your lecturers are available to offer assistance.

You also have the support of an access coordinator and a committed team of STEPS staff who will guide you through the course. You will learn to access CQUniversity's internet-based learning systems and make contact with other STEPS students, giving you the opportunity to discuss issues and make new friends. The Indigenous Student Engagement team also offers support to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students at CQUniversity.

Find out more about CQUniversity's full range of student support.

The best thing about studying STEPS is it really provided me all the key skills that I needed to get through my bachelor degree. It really prepared me for my time management, even essay writing.

Katie Magill

STEPS & Bachelor of Paramedic Science

STEPS was quite a big eye opener for how much study was going to be needed for the bachelor. I was glad they broke it down for me, so I wasn't overwhelmed.

Loran Ware

STEPS & Bachelor of Oral Health