The ChallENG VIP Program offers real-world multidisciplinary projects

VIP extends project-based learning beyond a single semester. It allows time for students to gain a deeper insight into their field of study and is a wonderful opportunity in a safe environment to develop sought-after professional skills. Through VIP, students interact with the academic’s industry partners (potential employers) and receive course credit.

As students progress through the VIP courses (ENGG260036004600) their seniority on the project provides them with leadership, management, and mentorship roles that prepare them for the workforce. 

Students WAM and Academic Performance will be taken into consideration when applying for a VIP project.

Explore VIP Projects

VIP for Undergraduate Students

Most UNSW students can apply to a VIP project in their first year and begin in their second year and onwards at UNSW.

The application process is as follows:

  1. Select a Vertically Integrated Project here.
  2. Click on the 'Apply Now for 2022' on your selected project - you will need to login with your zID and zPass.
  3. After applying, your application is reviewed by the ChallENG Team if successful at this stage your application will progress to academic review.
  4. At the VIP academic review stage of the application process, selected students may be invited by the VIP academic to meet and discuss joining the team. If you are invited to a meeting with the academic this is an opportunity for you to ask questions about the project.
  5. If after reviewing your application the VIP academic decides not to progress with your application you will be notified via email that your application will not progress any further. 
  6. There are many reasons your application may not be accepted into a particular team. Please contact the ChallENG team via email to help guide you to a team that is still looking for members.
  7. If your application is successful you will receive an email confirmation if they have been accepted into the team.
  8. Once accepted into the VIP team the you will be notified by email when they can enrol into the course. Please follow the information below for this step. (NOTE: Course enrolment will take about a week to process after you have been made an offer to join the team)

Undergraduate students can join a VIP team for a minimum of one year. The courses run across three consecutive terms: T1, T2 and T3 (2 UoC per Term) for a total of 6 UoC, which enables students to extend their project-based learning experience beyond a single trimester. Students must enrol in the following VIP courses based on their year of study:

Second-year - ENGG2600

Third-year - ENGG3600 

Fourth-year - ENGG4600

You MUST enrol in the VIP course for all three terms, and remain in the same VIP project across all terms. 

Students can only apply for one team at a time and may withdraw their application at any time.

Students reapplying: Students can apply to continue their VIP project for the following year, provided there is enough elective space in their degree and can enrol in the VIP course for all 3 terms. Upon reapplication, students can change to another VIP project at the end of the chosen course

For more information on eligibility and where VIP fits within your degree, please visit the following links if you are:

UNSW expects students to spend a minimum of 150 hours to complete a 6 UOC course like VIP. You will have at least 1 contact hour per week of team meetings with your lead academic/s. It is suggested to use at least 4 hours per week devoted to collaborative working time, assessments, and working on your assigned deliverables.

Remember the courses are assessment based ... NO EXAMS! 

Please visit the UNSW handbook for more course details:

VIP is available to all UNSW undergraduate students from the beginning of their second year, who have completed a minimum of the following Units of Credit (UoC) by T1 2022:

Second-year - 42 UoC

Third-year - 72 UoC

Fourth-year - 114 UoC

Engineering students must have completed ENGG1000 to apply. This does NOT apply for Comp/Sci, Food/Sci or any student outside the Engineering Faculty.

VIP is 2 UoC per term.

Engineering Students Engineering students can enrol for up to 20 UoC per term if they wish without having to apply for overload approval. 
Other Faculties Students from other faculties who wish to overload may need to seek approval from their Faculty. Students may need to apply for an Overload Request here of 20UoC per term, to enrol in a VIP Project as their General Education elective.

The VIP Program is an assessment-based elective course.

You MUST complete assessment tasks each term to maintain your position on the team and for successful completion of the course. You will receive a numerical mark and grade on your transcript upon successful completion of the course.

Students are given assessment tasks each term. At the end of terms 1 and 2, if they are completing assessments and are on track to pass, the grade for VIP in those terms will be listed as EC, which stands for Enrolment Continuing. This does not have a mark but counts as a pass in terms of academic standing.

At the end of term 3 after all assessments are completed, a final mark is calculated and added to the VIP course in Term 3. The enrolments in Term 1 and 2 are also updated with the final mark as well (the EC grade will remain). 

VIP courses are weighted the same as other Engineering courses for Honours calculations (2x for Level 2, 3x for Level 3, and 4x for Level 4).

Overall, the assessments are equal to a standard 6 UoC course which has a mark and counts towards your WAM. Partial credits will not be given.

Special Consideration: If you need to apply for special consideration you should do the same as you would for any other UNSW course. If your application for special consideration is approved, the nature of the substitute assessment or extension will depend upon the project you are enrolled in.

As a year-long course, working out the relevant census date can be tricky – please contact us for advice on census dates.


UNSW charges tuition fees on a unit of credit (UOC) basis by individual units of study in a course. You will be charged 2 UOC in each term for each of the VIP courses.

how to withdraw your application from ChallENG

Important note: To successfully unenroll from the VIP Course you must get permission from the ChallENG program to unenroll via the email address.

Students follow the steps below:

1. Communicate with your lead academic that you intend to drop the course.

2. Officially withdraw from the Apply ChallENG Site. (See image)

3. To gain permission, email communicating you have contacted your academic and confirm you wish to drop the course.

4. After, you will be contacted by student services giving you permission to unenroll on MYUNSW from ALL three terms. (or all remaining terms you are enrolled in the course)

5. If you unenrolled before census, apply for Fee-RemissionAfter you apply for fee remission the VIP course will be removed from your transcript.

Note: You must unenroll from ALL remaining terms of your VIP course on myUNSW to have successfully drop the VIP Course, NOT just the current term.

Subject to approval from the VIP academic, you may be able to utilise a VIP Project as your undergraduate thesis project.

To do your Thesis with a VIP Project, you MUST have completed 120 UoC by the end of the academic year, before starting your thesis the following year. Plus, standard school and faculty thesis course codes, prerequisites and rules apply.

The thesis project would be structured according to the UNSW Engineering undergraduate thesis structure NOT the ChallENG VIP course codes. For more information, please visit the links below:

VIP for Masters Students - School permission required first

Masters of Engineering Science (program 8338 only) can apply to participate in The Vertically Integrated Project Course ENGG4600 with approval from their engineering schools postgraduate coursework coordinator. Engineering school contacts

Masters of Engineering (program 8621) and Masters of Information Technology (program 8543) cannot participate in VIP.

See how VIP fits within your degree HERE