University of South Australia

University of South Australia

University of South Australia Details

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UniSA is Australia’s university of enterprise and is a globally-focused, locally-engaged institution established on the dual principles of equity and excellence.

With more than 32,000 students, the university is South Australia’s largest and was ranked 25th in the QS World University Rankings for institutions under 50 years old in 2015.

UniSA offers degree programs across a wide range of subjects including business, law, education, arts and social sciences, health sciences, information technology, engineering and the environment. A total of 88 per cent of UniSA graduates surveyed in 2014 were satisfied with the quality of their program.

On average over the past five years 90 per cent of UniSA graduates going on to full-time work  are employed in a professional occupation within four months of completing their degree

We believe a university’s reputation is determined largely by the quality of its graduates, and are proud that more than 90 per cent of our graduates now in full-time work are employed in professional occupations within four months of completing their degrees.

Committed to accessibility

UniSA remains strongly committed to ensuring the opportunities offered by our programs are available to a diverse range of students and the ideas and discussions generated during our world-first online consultation initiative unijam were vital in the production of ‘Crossing the Horizon’, our strategic action plan 2013-2018, which has informed our consolidation and growth.

Committed to excellence
Our commitment to excellence is also reflected in the calibre of our academics and researchers. The number of UniSA staff with a doctoral qualification has grown remarkably and 73 per cent of our academic staff now hold a PhD.


UniSA’s vision, detailed in Horizon 2020, is that it will be a leading contributor to Australia having the best higher education system in the world, supporting the world’s best educated and most innovative, cohesive and sustainable society.

It is our aim that in 2020, UniSA will be defined by its:

  • Outstanding learning outcomes and the quality and richness of the student experience
  • Graduates’ readiness for work, their adaptability, and their contribution as globally capable professionals
  • Commitment to equity and excellence, reinforcing each other in an environment characterised by uncompromising high standards
  • Strong nexus between teaching and research
  • World-class research clusters, and an exciting, research-intensive culture
  • Innovative solutions to social, economic, political and technological challenges
  • Considerable and creative contribution to the prosperity and well-being of the nation
  • Agility and adaptability in building and maintaining productive partnerships with industry, business and the community
  • High-performing staff and prestigious national and international partners
  • Enduring and mutually beneficial relationships with its global alumni
  • Strong sense of collective purpose.

Schools / Colleges / Departments / Courses / Faculties

Division of Health Sciences

  • School of Health Sciences
  • School of Nursing and Midwifery
  • School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences
  • School of Population Health

Division of Education, Arts and Social Sciences

  • School of Art, Architecture and Design
  • School of Communication, International Studies and Languages
  • School of Education
  • School of Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy

UniSA Business School

  • School of Commerce
  • School of Management
  • School of Marketing
  • School of Law

Division of Information Technology, Engineering and the Environment

  • School of Engineering
  • School of Information Technology and Mathematical Sciences
  • School of Natural and Built Environments


The University of South Australia was formed in 1991 with the merger of the South Australian Institute of Technology (SAIT) with three of the campuses (Magill, Salisbury and Underdale) of the South Australian College of Advanced Education (SACAE). The two other SACAE campuses, City and Sturt, were merged with the University of Adelaide and Flinders University respectively. To the former SACAE campuses of Magill, Salisbury and Underdale, SAIT added to the merger its three campuses at City East, The Levels (now known as Mawson Lakes) and Whyalla.

Salisbury campus was vacated in 1996, but its sale was held up for many years by litigation. In 1997, a new campus was opened at City West. In 2005, the campus at Underdale was closed as part of the Blueprint 2005 project, and its programmes were moved to other campuses. Some services still reside at Underdale such as Document Services. Blueprint 2005 also involved a number of new buildings, in particular at City West and Mawson Lakes.

The South Australian School of Arts can trace its history back to 1856 and the pioneering work of Charles Hill and H. P. Gill, through an unbroken succession of titles and changes in emphasis. It can claim to be one of the oldest art schools in Australia, and the oldest public art school. See South Australian School of Design for more detail.

The South Australian School of Arts, an established school within the Division of Education, Arts and Social Sciences, provides the most prestigious and valuable visual arts scholarship in Australia, the Gordon Samstag Scholarship.

he South Australian College of Advanced Education was formed in 1982 with the merger of five Colleges of Advanced Education. Adelaide CAE, Hartley CAE, Salisbury CAE, Sturt CAE and Torrens CAE respectively became the Adelaide (adjacent to Adelaide University), Magill, Salisbury, Sturt (actually in Bedford Park, adjacent to Flinders University) and Underdale CAE.

Hartley CAE was in turn formed from the 1979 merger of Murray Park CAE and Kingston CAE.

The South Australian Institute of Technology was an educational institution with 3 campuses in Adelaide, SA. Under a government reform to education in 1991 it was given the option of merging with the newly formed TAFE SA or the South Australian College of Advanced Education to form the University of South Australia. It had a broad range of topics making it a clear fit with neither institution.

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