ANU Science - Bachelor of Philosophy

Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours)


There is no other degree like it in Australia. In the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) you’ll get to explore your interests by undertaking research as an undergraduate student, get one-on-one mentoring by leading academics… all while enjoying the camaraderie of a group of like-minded students.

The research you do throughout the first years of your degree is excellent preparation for your honours year. During honours you will undertake a year-long research project under the guidance of an academic supervisor. This is where you can really indulge your passion and explore a topic in detail.

Honours year

  • A fourth year of study that is a continuation of an undergraduate degree focused on a research project
  • Identify a supervisor and an area of research
  • Full-time for two consecutive semesters and includes research training
  • Honours extends the knowledge and skills developed during the Bachelor degree and provides a solid foundation in the practice of research suitable for entry to a broad range of careers or to a PhD.

Program details

The PhB program is a four year research intensive undergraduate degree designed with flexibility in mind. Each year you will work with your mentor to develop a program that is individually tailored to be stimulating and challenging.

Some of the study areas in science, health and medicine include:

  • astrophysics
  • biology, biotechnology, botany, life sciences, microbiology and parasitology, molecular biology and zoology
  • chemistry
  • computer science and software engineering
  • earth science and geology
  • environmental science and geography
  • mathematics, mathematical physics and bioinformatics,
  • medical science, biomedical science, human sciences and neuroscience
  • physics and materials science
  • psychology.

You also have the option to explore disciplines outside of science.

Key facts

  • 4 years full-time

  • Semester 1 & 2 intake

  • Pathway to Doctor of Medicine and Surgery

  • #1 in Australia for graduate employability (Times Higher Education)


A smiling woman

Zelda Smith

"Studying science is a fantastic way to have a broad university experience, explore a range of topics, and interests, and have the opportunity for field trips, research, and high-level coursework. And at ANU, studying science is an incredibly unique experience due to the university's focus on research! My science degree has given me a strong scientific framework as well as the flexibility to explore topics including science communication, parasitology, and genetics through the undergraduate research experience. This degree is incredible!"

A man wearing medical scrubs and a stethoscope around his neck. He is leaning on the banister of a curved staircase.

Atul Sharma

"I had a unique experience during my Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours). It was broad, flexible, and in retrospect, more applicable even now as a third year Doctor of Medicine and Surgery student. The ability to slip into research projects was the key highlight. Research is the bedrock skill in many academic prospects, and a valuable experience when you reach the (daunting) job application seasons." 


Graduate research pathways

Many of our graduates have used the PhB program as a pathway to completing PhDs in some of the best universities around the world, such as Cambridge, Oxford, Yale, UC Berkley and, of course, ANU.

The PhB can also provide a pathway to the Doctor of Medicine and Surgery (MChD) without having to sit the GAMSAT. Each year, 10 places are reserved in our medicine program for students who successfully graduate from the PhB program and undertake a successful interview.

The Australian National University has been ranked as the top university for graduate employability in Australia in the Global University Employability Ranking 2022. As a student at ANU, you gain access to the ANU CareerHub – an online career development and employability tool that includes a jobs board and careers resources. You also have access to drop-in chats with a career consultant and to attend our career fairs to meet potential employers.

“Even from first year, I was exposed to cutting-edge technology here at ANU," says PhB graduate Marika Niihori. Marika has now been awarded a prestigious Gates Cambridge Scholarship.

Read about Marika's research

Field trips

Put scientific theory into practice through one of our many exciting fieldwork trips. Study the environment in Vietnam, natural disasters in Japan or the biology of the Great Barrier Reef.



As an intern, you will get hands on work experience that will put you ahead of the competition when it’s time to graduate. And did we mention you’ll get credit towards your degree?

Find out more

World class facilities

Our new $240-million science precinct on the ANU campus has state-of-the-art biological and chemical research laboratories, as well as a teaching hub.

Learn more

Learning experience

Lachlan Arthur in Swiss

My marathon exchange

Lachlan Arthur went on exchange to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) and it was nothing short of amazing.

Read Lachlan's story
Science communication

Ask a science educator: What makes a good Questacon experience?

Questacon Learning Programs Coordinator Kristi Chisholm tells ANU student Ziang Jia all about her career and how she got there. Find out how Kristi went from studying psychology to working in an iconic science museum.

Watch the video

Flexibility and opportunity: the PhB experience

“I’ve tried languages, physics, anthropology, chemistry, and mathematics, but biology is what I discovered I love the most, particularly genetics.”

Find out how Laura's research is helping put food on your table

Fees & scholarships


Please visit the Programs and Courses website for information about fees.

View fees


Whether you are looking for financial support to start your studies at ANU or help to move away from home for the first time, we have scholarship opportunities for you and your situation.

Science precinct at ANU at twilight

360 Virtual tours

Ever wondered what the science buildings and facilities at the ANU look like from the inside? Take yourself on a 360 tour and find out.

Choose a tour


Professor Jodie Bradby

Professor Jodie Bradby, Physics PhB Discipline Coordinator

Professor Jodie Bradby

Jodie leads a group on high pressure physics at the ANU Research School of Physics. She is also the current President of the Australian Institute of Physics. Jodie's research looks at the physical response of materials to pressure. Her recent successes include making a diamond that’s harder than a jeweller’s diamond and also a new type of silicon which can be used in more efficient solar cells.

Dr Giel Van Dooren

Dr Giel Van Dooren, Biology PhB Discipline Coordinator

Dr Giel Van Dooren

Giel is the leader of the van Dooren Group, researching cell biology and metabolism of apicomplexan parasites at the ANU Research School of Biology. He also teaches experimental modules in the Australian Society for Parasitology Concepts in Parasitology course. He currently serves as the ACT representative on the Australian Society for Parasitology council.

Dr Tegan Cruwys

Dr Tegan Cruwys, Psychology PhB Discipline Coordinator

Dr Tegan Cruwys

Tegan is a Clinical Psychologist with expertise in health, clinical and counselling psychology, social and community psychology, and mental health. She is a recipient of the Australian Research Council’s Discovery Early Career Research Award. Currently Tegan is leading a trial of a program to improve social connections, run in partnership with Australian Rotary Health and Headspace.

How to apply

Determine the best way to apply

There are different ways to apply to ANU, the best way for you to apply depends on your circumstances.

Direct applications to the ANU are for school leavers only, if you are a mature age student, non-school leaver, or transferring from another university you will need to apply via UAC by the 30 November and please remember to attach your supporting documents.

Understand the entry requirements

Meet the co-curricular or service requirement

In addition to meeting academic requirements, we have introduced a compulsory co-curricular or service requirement.

Make sure you have met the co-curricular or service requirement and provide the appropriate documentation.

Gather supporting documents

All students applying to the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) will need to provide a completed Supplementary Form and two referee reports.

Submit your application

Tick your application off your list so it's one less thing you need to think about. There are different ways to apply to ANU, the best way for you to apply depends on your circumstances.

Direct applications to the ANU are for school leavers only, if you are a mature age student, non-school leaver, or transferring from another university you will need to apply via UAC by the 30 November and please remember to attach your supporting documents.

Application assessment

Direct applications and UAC applications will be assessed after the 30 November deadline.

Accept your offer

Accept the offer and enrol at ANU!

Understand the entry requirements

Prepare entry requirements & support documents

All students applying to the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) will need to provide a completed Supplementary Form and two referee reports.

Submit your application

Visit the International applications - ANU Undergraduate.

Application assessment

All applications will be assessed after the deadline date.

Accept your offer

Accept the offer and enrol at ANU!


Need more information?

Send us an enquiry and we'll get back to you within 48 hours