UWA Staff

Overload policy


The Overload Policy of the Faculty of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences determines whether a student is permitted to enrol in more than a standard load.

A standard load in any academic year is 48 points, comprising two semesters of 24 points. However, the Faculty recognises there are occasions when students may need to overload in one or both semesters. You may also wish to see the University policy on full-time and part-time enrolment and overload, in particular section 4, governing this area.

Permitted to overload

Overloads are considered on the basis of past academic performance. As a guide, an average of 65 per cent across prior studies is required.

Students who have passed all units in a semester may enrol for units with a total value of up to 30 points in the subsequent semester. Students who wish to overload should contact the EMS Student Office for approval.


Intensive-mode units

Intensive-mode units are being trialed in the Faculty and students enrolled in intensive units are advised not to enrol in more than 24 points in the half-year that they are enrolled in intensive units.

Students enrolling for the first time and concurrent enrolments

Students who are enrolling for the first time at The University of Western Australia (UWA), either in the first academic year of a course or in a later year with advanced standing from another recognised institution, will not have passed all units in a semester at UWA and therefore cannot overload in their first semester. Subsequent enrolments must be in accordance with the overload policy.

Students enrolled concurrently in the last 6-12 points of their Bachelor's degree and an honours or postgraduate course are not permitted to enrol in more than 24 points across both courses. 

Exceptional circumstances

Students who have not passed all units in a semester may apply to overload in their final semester or final year if the overloaded enrolment would enable them to complete. They must have an interview with an adviser from the EMS Student Office.

All students who enrol in more than the standard load are advised that an overload will not be considered grounds for special consideration. Students who are having difficulty with an overloaded enrolment or unbalanced load are advised to see an adviser from the EMS Student Office immediately and to withdraw from the unit(s) as necessary to facilitate satisfactory progress.

Please note: Combined Course students apart from the BCompSc/BE, BE/BE and BCM/BE are not governed by this policy. However the following advice is provided for these students:

  • Always check to ensure that you comply with the overload policy of the faculty administering the non-engineering part of your combined course.
  • Do not overload in your first semester at UWA, if possible.
  • Give careful consideration to overloading in light of performance.
  • Do not overload by more than six points per semester.