About your opportunity and choices

Engineering Pathways for Regional Australia (EPRA) is a partnership of Australian higher education institutions that provides opportunities for persons living in regional and remote areas of Australia to study for a university degree in engineering.  EPRA is funded by the Australian Government’s Office for Learning and Teaching.

The website is a learning platform and planning tool to allow you to explore all permissible combinations of subjects that you can study for the award of an Associate Degree in Engineering in your chosen field of engineering.

Because subjects offered by different EPRA Partners may not be identical in content or learning outcome, and their availability may change from time-to-time, there can be no guarantee that the EPRA Partner University will agree to your choice of units when you apply to enrol.  Once enrolled, you cannot change your selection of units without approval from your University (even though an equivalent unit may be listed on the EPRA website).

The learning platform is a framework of foundation, core and discipline-specific subject areas that, when you graduate, will satisfy the requirements for admission by Engineers Australia as an Engineering Associate (GradAIEAust).

Why should you apply to enrol through EPRA?

  • We recognise that not all applicants had the opportunity to complete high school.
  • You can choose the institution that best suits you.
  • The flexible structure of the Associate Degree in Engineering allows you to select subjects that fit your interests and maximise your job opportunities.
  • Once enrolled you are guaranteed a pathway to Engineering Technologist or Professional Engineer status.

To graduate as an Engineering Associate you will need to complete 16 subjects, or 18 if you need to do preparation mathematics and physical science subjects.  If you are able to study full time you can complete the degree in two years.

Many of the subjects are available fully on-line, or a ‘blended learning’ combination of on-campus and distance education.  Because engineering involves practical skills there are some subjects that require attendance for laboratory sessions, but in many cases these can be done in intensive mode over a one- or two- week period.

There are links to the web pages for every subject.  It is up to you to select subjects that best fit your location and life style.

When you enter the ‘PLAN YOUR PATHWAY’ page you will be asked for information on your High School studies, in particular whether or not you have completed Year 12 Mathematics and Physics. You will also be asked whether you have worked in an engineering-related industry or have studied at TAFE.  This information will determine which subjects you can choose.  You may also be able to choose ‘Recognition for Prior Learning’ for a subject area, but the award of RPL is entirely the decision of the university in which you choose to enrol.

The next step is to indicate your field of engineering.  You can see more information on each of the five areas by clicking on the ‘Disciplines’ tag at the top of this page.

The Associate Degree Course has a common structure of two foundation units, six core units, and eight discipline specific subjects as shown in the diagram.  If you go to the ‘Disciplines’ page you will see the subject categories for your discipline.  If you haven’t completed year 12 maths or physical sciences you may have to take one or both of the additional ‘preparation subjects’.

EPRA Course structure

The Associate Degree in Engineering is a pathway to further study at one of our partner universities to become an Engineering Technologist or a Professional Engineer.  Pathways may differ and it will depend on the subjects that you studied in the Associate Degree, but as a rough guide your Associate Degree in Engineering will give you between 1.5 and 2 years advanced standing towards a 3-year BEngTech or a 4-year BE(Hons) degree.

Learning outcomes

Your Associate Degree in Engineering is designed to meet the entry level or Stage 1 competencies of an Engineering Associate (AQF Level 6) and can be compared with the TAFE Advanced Diploma in Engineering. These competencies mirror those of the Engineering Technologist and Professional Engineer. They describe the knowledge and skill base competencies, engineering application ability, and professional and personal attributes required for a person to be called an Engineering Associate.


University of Tasmania scholarships are available across all areas of study including Academic Achievement, Access and Diversity, Special Talent and Specific Projects and Topics. The University of Southern Queensland has a website listing 25 scholarships awarded in the area of Engineering and Built Environment. There are also state and federal government schemes to support upgrading of skills and qualifications.

Job Opportunities

Australia’s resource and manufacturing industries are scattered all over the country.  Technical innovations such as robotics and ‘smart’ mining equipment calls for new skills in the workforce. Some industries are reluctant to provide training or release workers for study because of loss of productivity.  In many cases there is a preference to recruit skilled workers.  Employment in Australia in the professional, scientific and technical fields is expected to grow by 14.4% in the next five years. The projected employment growth for persons with a bachelor degree or higher qualifications is the highest (466,700 or 13.1%) followed by Advanced Diploma or Diploma (136,400 or 10.4%). By contrast, the projected growth of employment for applicants with Certificate 1 or secondary education is 117,200 or 6.0%. Source: Employment Outlook to November 2019, Career Industry Council of Australia.




About EPRA

A consortium of regional HE and VET providers will partner to create a Learning Platform for Engineering which aims to provide access to engineering pathways, to expand curriculum choice and coverage. It reduces individual campus delivery costs and cross-institutional barriers and improves the availability of engineers and associated para-professionals for regional resource and manufacturing economies.

Learn more