Inherent Requirements

Inherent Requirements

Inherent requirements at Macquarie

Macquarie University is committed to provide a learning environment that complements and enhances the University experience for all students. To help students to make informed choices about their study, we have identified the inherent requirements for courses or programs offered by the University.

If there are program specific inherent requirements they will be listed under the award in the Handbook.

What are inherent requirements?

Inherent requirements are the essential activities, capacities and academic requirements necessary for a student to successfully achieve the core learning outcomes of a course or program. Students must meet the inherent requirements to complete Macquarie University course or program and graduate.

Compulsory Course Requirements

In addition to inherent requirements, there are also compulsory course requirements. These are broader and can include both compliance with the policies, procedures and regulations, which are applicable to all students at the University and the mandatory requirements associated with a program of study (eg. attendance, completion of assignments).

Reasonable adjustments

Students with a disability or chronic health condition may have reasonable adjustments made to enable them to meet these requirements. Reasonable adjustments could include such things as flexibility in assessments, changed exam conditions, provision of adaptive equipment, participation support, and flexible teaching material.

Reasonable adjustments:

  • must not fundamentally change the nature of the inherent requirement
  • be reasonable
  • and cannot compromise the academic integrity of the course.

Why are inherent requirements important?

Inherent requirements ensure students are given the opportunity to make informed decisions:

  • as to whether a course or program is suitable and relevant for them, and
  • the type of reasonable adjustments that could be put in place to allow them to complete the course without compromising the academic integrity of the course.

How does this affect you?

To successfully complete a course at Macquarie, you need to be able to meet all the inherent requirements. If you are applying for a course, you should read the inherent requirements carefully to ensure you are able to meet them.

If you have a disability or chronic health condition, you are encouraged to register with the Accessibility Service to meet with a member of the Accessibility team who can assess your needs and identify what support you may need at University. The staff will work with you and your faculty to determine the reasonable adjustments to assist you to meet the inherent requirements. In the case where it is determined that inherent requirements cannot be met with reasonable adjustments, the Accessibility Service can provide guidance regarding other study options.

Pre-enrolment advice can also be sought through the Accessibility Service to support students with a disability or health condition to learn more about the inherent requirements of a course and to provide advice and information regarding your enrolment choices.

If you have any other concerns about your ability to participate in aspects of the course you should contact your course convenor.

You can contact the Accessibility Service at Student Wellbeing on 9850 7497 if you have any questions relating to the assessment and implementation of disability supports, reasonable adjustments or inherent requirements.

All students with a disability and/or health condition are encouraged to register with the accessibility service via the online Accessibility registration form.

The inherent requirements framework

Each inherent requirement is made up of the following three levels:

  • Level 1 - Definition
  • Level 2 - Justification
  • Level 3 - Program specific examples

To provide clarity and consistency, the inherent requirement statements have been grouped under four categories:

  • Physical
  • Cognition
  • Communication
  • Behavioural
Category Definition

Category 1: Physical


The physical inherent requirement is to have the physical capacities to safely and effectively perform the activities necessary to undertake the learning activities and achieve the learning outcomes of a degree.

  • Work Health and Safety legislation requires that students do not place themselves or others at risk
  • Students may need to complete specific tasks in a timely manner and sustain performance over time.
  • Some programs include physical activities that require use of specific faculties, motor skills and capacities

Category 2: Cognition


The inherent requirement for cognition is possessing the intellectual, conceptual, integrative and quantitative capabilities to undertake the learning activities and achieve the learning outcomes of a degree.

  • Students need the capacity to read, comprehend, analyse and integrate complex written materials
  • Students need the capacity to reason and to synthesize knowledge in order to solve problems
  • Students need the capacity to identify and apply important information to relevant situations
  • Students need the capacity to prioritize and to complete tasks within the required timeframe
  • Students need the capacity to use basic quantitative and other research skills to gather, interpret and evaluate data as relevant for the program of study

Category 3: Communication


The inherent requirement for communication is the capacity to communicate information, thoughts and ideas through a variety of mediums and with a range of audiences.  MQ is an English speaking university although students may be required to communicate in other languages in accordance with their program of study.

  • Students need to be able to understand and participate in verbal and non-verbal exchanges in informal, formal and professional contexts.
  • Students need to be able to clearly understand and follow instructions and/or tasks.
  • To  demonstrate their learning, students need to convey their own thoughts and understanding using various communication mediums such as writing, presentations, tutorials etc.

Category 4: Behavioural


The behaviour inherent requirement is the capacity to sustain appropriate behaviour over the duration of units of study to engage in activities necessary to undertake the learning activities and achieve the learning outcomes of a degree.

  • Some programs require students to interact with fellow students, university staff, or external parties (eg. organisational representatives, hospital patients,   primary and high school students) in order to achieve learning outcomes in environments that may be sensitive, demanding or dynamic
  • Students need to function and adapt effectively and sensitively and manage their own emotions in an academic, clinical or placement environment
  • Students need to be open and responsive to constructive feedback
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