Academic Life

Academic Excellence

Academic excellence is a vital element of the finest university residential colleges. Our College is committed to assisting all students to attain academic success.

Since 2015, the College has had a policy that each student must achieve and maintain an annual average mark of equal to or greater than 65, with no fails in any subjects. To assist students to achieve this goal, the College provides a range of additional academic support. Further details of these initiatives are provided below.

Read about our Academic Program, compiled by Alex Wright, Dean of Studies

Tutorial Program

St Andrew’s College tutorial timetable – Semester 1 – 2018

St John’s College tutorial timetable – Semester 1 – 2018

Please note this timetable may be subject to change; it is advised students check back regularly.

Tutorials are timetabled if there are 3 or more requests made for the same subject. If there are less than 3 requests made, students will be contacted regarding their tutorial arrangements.

If you are a St Andrew’s student and would like to request tutoring for a specific subject please complete the request form here.

An essential part of the College Life Program at St Andrew’s is our extensive tutorial program. The program is designed and managed by the College’s Senior Tutor and is tailored every semester to meet residents’ specific needs, including the needs of students at universities apart from the University of Sydney.

All students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of this excellent program. The College provides as much tutorial support as possible, with most students receiving weekly tutorials for their subjects.

College tutorials are run by Academic Area Tutors, other senior residents in College, and external tutors (such as PhD and post-doctoral candidates).

The tutorial program is free to current members of College and is open to residents of other University of Sydney residential colleges in consultation with the Senior Tutor. The program is also open to those external to College on application and payment of an administration fee.

If you would like to submit an expression of interest application for tutoring, please contact the Senior Tutor.

Key People



Senior Tutor: Elly Howse

The Senior Tutor is responsible for overseeing the academic program as part of the College’s Residential Life program. This includes tutorials, mentoring, academic honesty workshops, tutorials, and general academic advice. Tutorial subject areas: Health sciences, public health (including health policy and health promotion), epidemiology.

A Wright Head Shot

Dean of Studies: Alex Wright

The Dean of Studies assists the Senior Tutor and coordinates the mentoring program for students on academic probation. The Dean of Studies also runs the ‘Just Write!’ program, academic writing tutorials, other tutorials in the humanities, and offers general academic advice. Subject areas: Gender studies, cultural studies, sociology, film studies, politics.

Academic Area Tutors

In 2017 the College has appointed 22 Academic Area Tutors to help support and facilitate academic success in our community. These Area Tutors are high achieving senior undergraduate (3rd, 4th and 5th year) and postgraduate students who either live in residence in College or close by.

The Academic Area Tutors are responsible for:

  • Running subject tutorials at the College;
  • Organising peer-led study groups;
  • Mentoring a group of first year students in their degree or subject area;
  • Providing academic mentoring to students not yet achieving their academic goals; and
  • Engaging with the College’s intellectual life through the Senior Common Room

Academic Area Tutors are the first port of call for any academic-related queries, including subject-based questions. The list of Academic Area Tutors are available on a tab in the current St Andrew’s College timetable link below.

Academic Writing Program

The College also provides academic writing tutorials to assist students in developing writing skills, academic referencing and oral presentations in line with university academic honesty policies.

Students in the humanities and social sciences are particularly encouraged to request an academic writing tutorial. Please complete the request form if you would like an academic writing tutorial:

On Sundays from 3-6pm during semester, the Dean of Studies and Academic Area Tutors run the ‘Just Write!’ program in the College’s Dining Hall. The ‘Just Write!’ sessions provide an invaluable opportunity for students to work and study in a quiet environment, supported by their peers to avoid procrastination from study.

Mentoring Program

The College provides one-on-one academic support and mentoring for students who need further assistance in achieving their academic goals. Students who achieve under the College’s average annual mark of 65 are strongly encouraged to take advantage of academic mentoring.

Support for First Year Students

First year academic groups provide an opportunity for new students to meet their Academic Area Tutor and find ‘academic buddies’ to support them in achieving academic success at university. First year students are invited to complete a brief online form on arrival in College to help us determine specific academic support, including any learning or disability requirements.

All first year students are also required to attend an information session on academic honesty during Semester 1.

First year students are encouraged to contact the Senior Tutor, Dean of Studies or relevant Academic Area Tutor for academic advice and guidance.

 Thistle Awards

In 2007, the College introduced a new academic award based on first semester results. This award seeks to highlight Semester 1 academic achievement by the students of St Andrew’s College. Thistles were awarded in 2008 and continue annually.

Eligible students are presented by the Student Club Executive with a lapel pin at a formal dinner each October.  Students are eligible for either a bronze, silver or gold pin for either 1, 2 or 3 years of high academic merit based on Semester 1 results. Students are encouraged to wear their lapel pin on their academic gowns.

Congratulations to the most recent recipients who were awarded Thistles in October 2015 at our annual Valedictory Dinner. The full list of recipients can be found here.

Academic Prizes and Awards

Each year, the College awards a number of prizes to our highest achieving students based on the previous year results. The College awards prizes at the annual University & Schools Dinner (May) and the Valedictory Dinner (October).

Prizes include Bronze, Silver and Gold Thistles, which are awarded on the basis of first semester results. Eligible students are presented with a lapel pin in bronze, silver or gold for respectively 1, 2 or 3 years of high academic merit. The full list of 2015 Thistle recipients can be found here.

The College annually awards the St Andrew’s Medal to the student with the highest academic achievement over the first three years of their undergraduate study. This medal is awarded each year at the University and Schools Dinner (May).


 St Andrew’s Medal

This is awarded to the student with the highest academic achievement over the first three years of their undergraduate study. The award takes place at the University and Schools Dinner in May each year.