9. Equivalent full-time student load

Equivalent full-time student load (EFTSL) is a measure of a full-time student’s annual study load [HESA section 169-27].


At University X, an annual full-time student load is equivalent to 8 x 6 unit courses, or in other words, one EFTSL is equal to 48 units of study.

9.1 - Determining EFTSL values for units of study

A provider must, for each unit of study it provides or proposes to provide for a period, determine the EFTSL value for the unit of study [HESA subsections 169-25(1) and 169-28(1)].

If the unit can form part of multiple courses of study, the provider may determine different EFTSL values for the unit for each course of study [HESA subsection 169-28(2)]. If a unit is offered over different periods, it is taken to be a different unit of study in respect of each period [HESA subsection 169-25(1)] and may, therefore, have different EFTSL values. When reporting EFTSL to the department, providers much give such units different unit of study codes.

For further information on requirements a provider must meet when determining EFTSL values for units of study, see chapter 7 of the Administration Guidelines.

EFTSL values for postgraduate research units

A provider may determine the EFTSL value for research units of study undertaken by higher degree research students based on the days or weeks that a student is enrolled in a given period. This is the consumption model. Each student is enrolled in their own unique unit of study, although a provider may determine a common unit of study code for particular groupings of these units.

A provider must comply with the standard EFTSL provisions in HESA for postgraduate coursework units of study.

9.2 - Publishing EFTSL values for units

A provider must publish on its website the EFTSL value for each unit of study that it provides or proposes to provide, on or before the earliest enrolment date for units of study [Administration Guidelines section 6.10.5].