Gain essential industry experience to work in a range of healthcare settings with the Diploma of Nursing. Guided by a registered nurse, you’ll learn to administer and monitor medication and care for a range of clients with various needs. Taught online and on-campus, you’ll graduate with 440 hours of experience through supervised clinical placements.

This is a nationally approved vocational course that is recognised throughout Australia.

  • Nationally recognised training
    Nationally recognised training
  • TAFE Victoria
    TAFE Victoria
Midyear applications are now open.

Ready to apply for a midyear start? Go to the application portal. Still exploring your options at Swinburne? Meet us at Open Day.

Your industry experience

Bolster your CV with real industry experience. This course involves 440 hours of mandatory supervised clinical placements.

Skills you’ll learn

  • Health assessments
  • Monitor medication
  • Skills to work in a variety of settings
  • Effective communication skills

Your career opportunities

  • Acute Care Nurse
  • Mental Health Nurse
  • Rehabilitation Nurse
  • Aged Care Nurse
  • Palliative Care Nurse

Further education

Location options

  • Online

Professional accreditations

Swinburne’s Diploma of Nursing is accredited by the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Accreditation Council (ANMAC), which is responsible for the regulation of nurses and midwives.


Entry into this course is based on an applicant’s previous study, demonstrated knowledge and skills, and/or work history. It is recommended that all applicants attend a course information session.

For information on essential physical and behavioral abilities needed to perform assessment tasks and professional placements, please review the Informed Choices statement.

Course prerequisites

Academic requirements

You are required to complete VCE (within the past seven years), with a minimum score of 20 for English or 25 in EAL. You must also have a satisfactory score for Units 1 and 2 in Maths or ACSF Exit Level 3 (working at Level 4) or above in both Reading and Numeracy as determined by an online literacy and numeracy test issued by Swinburne Online.

English language requirements

The Diploma of Nursing has entry criteria set by the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Accreditation Council. All students entering this course must demonstrate the level of English language skills specified by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) prior to commencing the course.

You must demonstrate your English language competency in one of the following ways:

  • You completed your schooling in Australia or at a school taught and assessed in English.
  • You have achieved a specified minimum score in an approved English language test, such as IELTS, OET, PTE or TOEFL iBT. (For full English language requirements, please see the Diploma of Nursing Entry Criteria page.)

Other requirements

Additional requirements

  • Applicants must be 18 years of age at the time of placement
  • NDIS Worker Screening Check
  • National Police Check*
  • Working with Children Check (Volunteer or Employee) for the duration of the program.

*If a candidate believes there would be a disclosable issue on their National Police Check, a confidential conversation will be required prior to enrolment to determine suitability for work within the healthcare environment.


This course requires up-to-date evidence of immunisations. If you are not willing to provide up-to-date evidence, you may not be eligible to complete this program.

Immunisation requirements include the following:

  • COVID-19 Vaccination – full course required after 15 November 2021
  • Measles / Mumps / Rubella
  • Diphtheria / Tetanus/ Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
  • Varicella (Chickenpox)
  • Hepatitis B
  • Influenza (Annual requirement)
  • Tuberculosis Screening – QuantiFERON Gold test.

For more information about the minimum immunisation requirements please download the Vaccination for healthcare workers information.

Additional immunisations may be required in response to any changes in Government policy or the specific requirements of the organisation you attend for your clinical placement. Further information will be provided at the commencement of the course.

Informed Choices Statement

View the Informed Choices statement, which provides information about the inherent requirements of nursing, specifically the essential physical and behavioural abilities needed to perform assessment tasks and professional placements in nursing and progress to a career in this field. This information is intended to assist you to choose whether you can successfully participate in and complete a course.

Prior to applying

Please review the following additional requirements before submitting your application:

  • Applicants must be residing in Victoria, Australia, for the duration of the course.
  • You must maintain a current Police Check and Working with Children Check for the duration of the course.
  • The first unit of this course, HLTAID011 Provide First Aid, must be completed prior to your first placement. This requirement can be filled by providing evidence of your completion in an Accredited First Aid course. You can complete this through different providers, including St. John Ambulance Australia and Australian Red Cross.
  • This course requires up-to-date evidence of immunisations. If you are not able to provide up-to-date evidence, you will not be able to attend the clinical placement component of this course. For more information about the minimum immunisation requirements, please visit the health.vic website. Additional immunisations may be required in response to any changes in Government policy or the specific requirements of the organisation you attend for your clinical placement. Further information will be provided at the commencement of the course.
  • Applicants without formal qualifications but with significant relevant work experience are welcome to apply.
Admission requirements

Meeting the minimum entry requirements for the course does not guarantee an offer of a place. See admission requirements for general information about the admission process.

English language requirements

Satisfactory completion of one of the following:

Need to undertake an English assessment for entry?

A prerequisite for many courses, the Pearson Test of English (PTE Academic) can now be done at our Hawthorn campus.

Credit transfer

Credit transfer is the recognition of academic credits gained through formal study (i.e. units of competency) completed either at another institute or in another qualification. The total amount of credit will vary from individual to individual, based on the unit/s that have been successfully completed. 

Recognition of prior learning

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is the process of transferring the skills and knowledge that you have acquired over your lifetime (irrespective of how they were obtained) against the requirements of the unit.  

RPL is an assessment process that requires you to provide evidence that demonstrates how you meet the requirements of the unit/s. The amount and types of evidence you will need to provide will depend on the unit requirements.

Finding your fit

At Swinburne, we recognise that not one size fits all. If this course doesn’t meet all your study criteria, check out these alternatives.

Course structure

The Diploma of Nursing consists of 20 core units and 5 preferred elective units.

Core units
Elective units
Course hours are estimated and may change based on study mode, unit choice, credits, or enrolment adjustments, total indicative nominal hours: 1786

Your units

Units of study Unit code
Core units
Confirm physical health status
Core unit, 90.0 credit points
Analyse and respond to client health information
Core unit, 60.0 credit points
Apply basic principles and practices of infection prevention and control
Core unit, 35.0 credit points
Follow safe work practices for direct client care
Core unit, 25.0 credit points
Practise nursing within the Australian health care system
Core unit, 75.0 credit points
Apply communication skills in nursing practice
Core unit, 50.0 credit points
Perform clinical assessment and contribute to planning nursing care
Core unit, 50.0 credit points
Apply legal and ethical parameters to nursing practice
Core unit, 30.0 credit points
Implement, monitor and evaluate nursing care
Core unit, 110.0 credit points
Implement and monitor care of the older person
Core unit, 75.0 credit points
Administer and monitor medicines and intravenous therapy
Core unit, 275.0 credit points
Implement and monitor care for a person with mental health conditions
Core unit, 60.0 credit points
Apply nursing practice in the primary health care setting
Core unit, 80.0 credit points
Apply principles of wound management
Core unit, 60.0 credit points
Implement and monitor care for a person with acute health conditions
Core unit, 150.0 credit points
Implement and monitor care for a person with chronic health conditions
Core unit, 60.0 credit points
Provide end of life care and a palliative approach in nursing practice
Core unit, 70.0 credit points
Work with diverse people
Core unit, 40.0 credit points
Promote Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander cultural safety
Core unit, 25.0 credit points
Reflect on and improve own professional practice
Core unit, 120.0 credit points
Elective units
Provide First Aid
Elective unit, 18.0 credit points
Interpret and apply medical terminology appropriately
Elective unit, 60.0 credit points
Contribute to the nursing care of a person with diabetes
Elective unit, 80.0 credit points
Research and apply evidence to practice
Elective unit, 65.0 credit points
Manage personal stressors in the work environment
Elective unit, 25.0 credit points

2024 fees

Full fee* ($AUD)


Skills first government-subsidised place* ($AUD)


2024 fees

Fees are estimates only

Fees published on this page are estimates only and are subject to change depending on individual circumstances at the time of enrolment. The above fees apply for units studied in 2024 only and may change for units studied in future years. There may be additional costs related to learning material and equipment.

Fees are estimates only

The indicative course fees shown apply to international students for the relevant year only. They are based on a standard study load per year. However, please note that fees are assessed according to a student's study load in each semester, and variation to study load will result in an adjustment to tuition fees. International tuition fees are generally inclusive of Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF). All fees are subject to annual review and may be adjusted.

Skills first government-subsidised place

This training is delivered with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding. To qualify for a government-subsidised place, you must meet various eligibility criteria. The course you’ve applied for must also be offering government-subsidised places. Swinburne will determine your eligibility by conducting a full assessment of your eligibility during the course application process.

How do I pay my fees?

You can pay your Swinburne fees in person, via credit card, BPAY, or at Australia Post. Check to see if loans and employer sponsored training are also available.

International students need to pay tuition fees up-front by the relevant due date. You can find the due dates on your Statement of Account.

To pay your fees:

  • log in to My Financials
  • check your Australian bank account details are correct 
  • check your Statement of Account to see how much you owe 
  • pay using your preferred payment method.

Eligibility for VET student loans (VSL)

If you apply for a VET Student Loan, Swinburne must first verify your identity. If you are eligible, we will provide your enrolment information to the government so you can complete the application within their eCAF system.

The VET Student Loan amount for this course is capped. You must start repaying this loan once you earn above the compulsory repayment threshold.

Concessions rates for vocational students

Concession rates for Diploma and Advanced Diploma programs are also available if you self-identify as being of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent and qualify for a government-subsidised training place under the Indigenous Completions Initiative.

The eligibility criteria are set by the Victorian Government and assessed by Swinburne in accordance with government directives, which are subject to change at any time.

  • Portrait   Female Nurse  Scrubs  Hospital Work  Smiling  Happy  Clipboard

    Study this course for free in 2024

    You could have your tuition fees covered in 2024 thanks to the Victorian Government's Free TAFE for Priority Courses initiative. 

    Free TAFE for Priority Courses is available to any Australian citizen, permanent resident or New Zealand citizen.

    There are other factors, too. The best way to find out if you’re eligible is to apply!

Student services and amenities fee

This funding serves to improve the student experience at Swinburne. You may use many or just some of the services and amenities that the fee provides.

From 1 January 2024, all Diploma level and above courses will contribute to the Student Services and Amenities fee. Below is the capped amount for 2023 as a guide ahead of fees for 2024 being announced.

Please refer to the Student Services Amenities Fee page for more information.

This funding serves to improve the student experience at Swinburne. You may use many or just some of the services and amenities that the fee provides.

This amenities fee is included within your annual tuition fee listed above. The fee shown in the capped amount for 2024.

Please refer to the Student Services Amenities Fee page for more information.

SSAF fee* ($AUD)


SSAF fee* ($AUD)



Scholarship applications for 2024 are open. Scholarships at Swinburne are about providing opportunity, promoting equity and recognising excellence and achievement. We want you to reach your potential and achieve your life and career goals. 

Our handy guide will assist you to gather documents for your application.

When you apply for a Swinburne course, we automatically consider you for an international scholarship of up to 30 per cent off your course fees – no separate application required! Just apply for your Swinburne course of choice and when we review your course application, we will also assess you for an international scholarship.

Apply through an agent

Most international students use an education agent to help them through the application process. Swinburne has agents all over the world that can help you with your application to study. Search for a Swinburne representative in your country. If your country is not listed, please contact us.

Representatives and agents
Search for agents

Apply directly

Ready to take on a new challenge and reach your academic goals? If you already know which course you want to study and understand the entry requirements, what are you waiting for? Apply online! Remember, you cannot apply direct if you have an active VTAC application.

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