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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Students

At ECU, we help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their communities to achieve their dreams and aspirations through further education. Our Centre for Indigenous Australian Education and Research, Kurongkurl Katitjin, is committed to assisting students with choosing a university entry pathway and in understanding and adapting to university life.

Why ECU?

  • QILT logo

    ECU top in teaching quality

    For the fifth year in a row, ECU has received the top undergraduate teaching quality ranking of all 37 public universities in Australia.

    ECU was also the top-ranked public university in Australia for undergraduate skills development for the sixth year in a row.

    View QILT results.

  • The Good Universities Guide 2021

    Good Universities Guide

    In the 2021 Good Universities Guide, ECU graduates have given us a 5-star rating for teaching quality, skills development, student support, learning resources, learner engagement and overall student experience.

    The 5-star rating for undergraduate teaching quality has now been achieved for 14 straight years.

    Read more about the Good Universities Guide.

  • THE Impact Rankings

    THE Impact Rankings

    ECU has been ranked in the top 50 for Gender Equality (24th), Good Health and Wellbeing (24th) and Quality Education (41st) in the 2021 Times Higher Education Impact rankings, showing how universities are working towards the achievement of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

    Read more about the THE Impact Rankings

  • THE World University Rankings 2020 Top 100 Young

    THE Young University Rankings

    ECU has been ranked in the world's top 100 universities under 50 years old in the 2020 Times Higher Education (THE) Young Universities Rankings, THE World University Rankings.


There are a few different ways you can enter university. Whether you didn't get the ATAR score you were aiming for, or you’ve completed other qualifications, or even if it’s been a few years since you’ve studied, you have some options.

Aboriginal University Readiness Assessment

The Aboriginal University Readiness Assessment (AURA) used to be known as the Aboriginal Student Intake Test (ASIT). It allows someone who has completed a Certificate II or lower to be considered for university entry.

It includes a self-assessment of your skills, knowledge and lifestyle to enable you to make informed decisions about entering university and thriving here as a student.

If you haven’t completed at least a Certificate III qualification, AURA may be the simplest way for you to gain entry to enabling or undergraduate study.

Read more about AURA.

UniPrep pathways

Another option for students is one of our bridging courses called UniPrep – short for University Preparation.

UniPrep comes in a few flavours – some are short, intensive courses, while others take longer to complete.

Whichever one you choose, if you complete it successfully, you’ll be ready to apply for entry to a whole range of undergraduate courses across our eight study areas.

Read more about UniPrep.

Not sure about your options?

If you'd like to chat about your pathway options, please email us at:

Need some help deciding what to study?

Our future student events include a mix of on-campus and online sessions designed to help you decide what to study at ECU.

Download a guide

If you prefer paper over pixels, please download one of our guides.

Become World Ready

Experience Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Students at ECU.

As an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander student you may be eligible for different kinds of Government or ECU student loans. The Aboriginal Tutorial and Mentoring Program also covers the cost of a tutor to help you with academic and study skills assistance.

You could also be eligible for a scholarship to help with the costs of studying.

Commonwealth Scholarships

For example, there are different kinds of Commonwealth Scholarships that cover higher education costs:

  • The Indigenous Commonwealth Education Costs Scholarship
  • The Indigenous Enabling Commonwealth Education Costs Scholarship

And some provide additional financial support if you’re from a rural or remote area:

  • The Indigenous Commonwealth Accommodation Scholarship
  • The Indigenous Enabling Commonwealth Accommodation Scholarship

More about Commonwealth and other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander scholarships.

"We are committed to walking with you on your university journey."
Kurongkurl Katitjin Building, ECU Mount Lawley campus

Kurongkurl Katitjin building

ECU Mount Lawley Campus

ECU’s Centre for Indigenous Australian Education and Research, Kurongkurl Katitjin provides support services and programs to help meet the academic and cultural needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. These include:

  • Dedicated Student Success Officers
  • Nala Karla Student Rooms and facilities
  • Tutorial Assistance
  • Elder-in-Residence Program

More about Kurongkurl Katitjin.

Student stories

  • Cassandra Catley

    Cassandra Catley

    Indigenous University Orientation Course and Bachelor of Sport, Recreation and Event Management graduate

    "My ECU studies have taught me that hard work pays off"

    My study experience has been amazing and I am grateful for the connections I have built with friends from my futsal team, who I now consider my family.

    I first began my journey with ECU through the Indigenous University Orientation Course. This pathway gave me the guidance and time to help me pick a career I am passionate about.

    The lecturers offer great support and will always do their best to help you out when you need.

    My ECU studies have taught me that hard work pays off and I am proving that more and more each semester, as I get closer to the end of my studies.

  • Jarni Lee

    Jarni McGuire

    Bachelor Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations

    "ECU offers a high level of support for my studies"

    The skills I have developed throughout my time at ECU have been invaluable. I was fortunate enough to complete an internship within the ECU’s Corporate Marketing and Events Team, which gave me the opportunity to apply my learnings from my studies in a real world environment.

    Balancing family, work and study has been the biggest obstacle during my studies, however ECU offers a high level of support to enable me to keep pursuing my studies and move forward with a smile on my face.