Show us a selection of your strong creative work 

What is the BE Portfolio Entry?

At UNSW Built Environment, we recognise your creative potential. With BE Portfolio Entry, you can submit a portfolio of your best creative work to showcase your talent and boost your chance of admission. 

Your portfolio should demonstrate your ability and interest in studying your chosen degree. Assessors will review your portfolio and cover letter and may invite you for an interview to support your application.  

BE Portfolio Entry is optional. Online applications are open to local applicants and onshore international applicants (i.e. those currently studying in Australia). Applicants who don’t apply for BE Portfolio Entry are assessed on their ATAR (or equivalent).  

Submit your portfolio now 

  • Online applications will open on Monday 9 September 2019 to local applicants and onshore international applicants (i.e. currently studying in Australia). Submissions are due by 5pm, Friday 15 November 2019. 
  • After you submit your portfolio and cover letter, we will let you know whether you have been selected for an interview by Friday 29 November 2019. Interviews will take place between Monday 2 and Friday 6 December 2019.  
  • Offers will be made through the usual UAC process 

To be eligible, you must have your chosen UNSW Built Environment degree as a UAC preference. Depending on availability, applicants who have submitted a portfolio and are within 10 points of the cut-off will be re-ranked, based on a combination of the portfolio and interview scores and ATAR (or equivalent). Any offers will be made through the usual UAC process.

Crafting your portfolio

Your portfolio is the main part of your submission. It should be a summary of your best creative output and describe where your creative imagination and skills lie. You can include written or visual material, such as photography, previous design work, art, sculpture, and digital or online work. It should be a maximum of 5 x A4 pages. Hard copies or any physical pieces won’t be accepted.  

Make sure you craft your portfolio to make it appealing and engaging. We encourage risk and originality of thinking and making. We will look at the size and number of items in your portfolio to assess your ability to consider both the quality of the content and how you have put it together.  

Think carefully about the layout, its visual qualities and the story it tells. We aren’t only interested in your final design or products, so include some process work, technical drawings, patterns or design drafts. We love inquisitive minds, originality, and craftsmanship. 

Find out what makes a good portfolio: 

Cover letter

In your cover letter, you should explain why you’re interested in studying your chosen Built Environment degree. Tell us in your own words about your skills, knowledge and life experiences that you believe will make you a suitable candidate for your chosen degree. Also tell us about other interests and abilities that would help you in a career in the built environment. You must write the letter yourself and keep it to a maximum of 350 words.  

Cover letter requirements by course:  

  • Bachelor of Architectural Studies 
    Explain why you are uniquely suited for the Bachelor of Architectural Studies.  

  • Bachelor of Interior Architecture  
    Write a personal response to this statement: “Interior Architecture is the Architectural shape of Interior Design and encompasses the creative thinking and making of all possible interior environments. At UNSW Interior Architecture, we foster in our students the idea of interiority as a breadth of conditions and experiences within a 21st-century global context.” 

  • Bachelor of Industrial Design  
    Write a personal response to this statement: “The designer’s role is to create products and systems that work in the real world – addressing social, commercial and environmental contexts – and enhance life through innovation and with respect for user needs.” 

  • Bachelor of Computational Design 
    Write a personal response to this statement: “Computational Design represents a profound shift from using the computer to produce or represent preconceived forms in architecture to conceive and simulate building designs with the help of a computer. With this in mind, please answer these two questions in your essay: 1) what is the strength of a computer? and 2) how could architectural designers use this strength to conceive and simulate buildings?” 

  • Bachelor of Landscape Architecture 
    Explain why you are uniquely suited to the Bachelor of Landscape Architecture 

Also write a personal statement which completes these two phrases: 

  1. 1. As I understand it, Landscape Architecture is involved with … 
  2. 2. My interest in studying Landscape Architecture stems from … 

Some potential candidates will be selected for an interview based on their submissions. The interview will be a 30-minute conversation with UNSW Built Environment staff from your chosen degree, either face-to-face or online. In the interview, you should demonstrate your understanding of and interest in this field of study. This is your chance to tell us about your strengths and how you are suited to studying the degree you have chosen. 


To be eligible, you must have your chosen degree as a UAC preference. After you have lodged a UAC application for your preferred degree and wish to apply through BE Portfolio Entry, submit your portfolio.