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Australia

Australia is one of the largest countries in the world and is the smallest continental landmass on Earth. At 7,692,024 square kilometres, it is also the world’s largest island. Situated between the Indian and Pacific oceans in the Southern Hemisphere, Australia is nicknamed the “Land Down Under” because of its geographical location.

Australia

Australia is one of the largest countries in the world and is the smallest continental landmass on Earth. At 7,692,024 square kilometres, it is also the world’s largest island. Situated between the Indian and Pacific oceans in the Southern Hemisphere, Australia is nicknamed the “Land Down Under” because of its geographical location.

The city of Canberra is its capital, which is found in the southeast part of the country. Top economic and cultural destinations include Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Gold Coast. As of the end of June 2020, Australia’s official population was 25,687,041.

A lot of international students go to Australia for post-secondary, graduate, and postgraduate studies because of its high-quality education system, diverse range of study options, and cultural diversity. Higher education institutions in Australia are recognised to be among the best in the world.

Climate and Weather

One of the top reasons why international students choose Australia is the pleasant climate and weather. There are four seasons in Australia. Summer runs from December to February. Winter lasts from June to August. March to May is autumn, while September to November is spring. The climate varies greatly across the eight states and territories in Australia.

Students have to prepare for the state or territory they are going to for their studies because the weather can be unpredictable – it can be sunny in the morning and rainy in the afternoon. Those in Southeastern Australia, for instance, can even experience four seasons in a day.

Why Australia?

Quality of Life

International students choose Australia for their studies because the quality of life is great. The country ranks fifth in the 2020 U.S. News & World Report Quality of Life Rankings. The standard of living is high and the cost of living is significantly lower compared with that of the United States and the UK.
International students can also engage in part-time work while studying to have savings or help fund their education. The country also has lots of recreational activities that promote a work and life balance among students.

Literacy Rate

Australia has a 99% adult literacy rate. Individuals 15 years old and above can read and write. They are also able to make simple arithmetic calculations. Australia has one of most excellent education systems in the world, which explains its high literacy rate.
According to the OECD Better Life Index by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the average student in Australia has a score of 502 in reading literacy, maths, and sciences, well above the OECD average score of 486.

Academic Excellence Ranking

Australia is home to high-ranking institutions such as Australia National University, University of Melbourne, University of Sydney, and University of New South Wales. There is a wide range of degrees and programs that international students can choose and focus on. There are top universities, as well as institutions that offer vocational and English language training.
Technology also plays a big role in putting Australian education on the map. International students can take advantage of the high-quality technology and innovations that make scientific research and projects a success. Almost all universities are equipped with state-of-the-art technology that facilitates their studies.

Safety and Security

Based on the OECD Better Life Index, 63% of Australians feel safe walking alone at night. The country ranks 13th out of 163 ranked countries in the 2020 Global Peace Index. This shows that it’s one of the safest countries to live in.
The crime rates are low, as well as terrorism risk. The emergency services are spread out so if there is something that concerns your safety, getting in touch with the authorities is easy, fast, and convenient.

Cultural Diversity

Australia is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world. Most of the people come from different cultural and religious backgrounds. Almost 30% of the people residing in Australia are immigrants.
Australia is a great country for international students as they can easily socialise and learn about other cultures. This is also one of the reasons why international students choose Australia – everyone is very welcoming, no matter where you came from.

Fast Facts

Highest-ranking institutions in Australia
According to the QS World University Rankings for 2021, the top 20 universities in Australia and their world ranking are the following:
  1. Australian National University (31)
  2. University of Sydney (40)
  3. University of Melbourne (41)
  4. University of New South Wales (44)
  5. University of Queensland (46)
  6. Monash University (55)
  7. University of Western Australia (92)
  8. University of Adelaide (106)
  9. University of Technology Sydney (133)
  10. University of Wollongong (196)
  11. University of Newcastle, Australia (197)
  12. Macquarie University (214)
  13. Curtin University (217)
  14. Queensland University of Technology (217)
  15. RMIT University (223)
  16. Deakin University (275)
  17. University of South Australia (295)
  18. Griffith University (303)
  19. University of Tasmania (308)
  20. Swinburne University of Technology (372)
Top postgraduate courses in Australia
  1. Master of Business
  2. Master of Architecture DMAE
  3. Master of Accounting and Financial Management
  4. Master of Business Process Management
  5. Master of Counselling
  6. Master of Data Analytics
  7. Master of Digital Communication
  8. Master of Education
  9. Master of Health, Safety and Environment
  10. Master of Information Technology
Top jobs by demand
  1. Health workers (registered nurses, therapists, general practitioners, surgeons, specialists)
  2. Accommodation and hospitality managers
  3. Accountants
  4. Advertising professionals
  5. Aeronautics, aircraft, and air transport professionals (aeroplane pilots, engineers)
  6. Engineers
  7. Agriculture professionals (consultants, engineers, scientists, technicians)
  8. Skilled workers (plumbers, carpenters, machinists, mechanics, electricians)
  9. Education professionals (teachers in all levels of study, language teachers, special needs teachers, as well as teachers in non-academic fields such as dance, music, drama, and art)
  10. Construction professionals (architects, engineers)
Top earning jobs in Australia
  1. Surgeons
  2. Anaesthetists
  3. Internal Medicine Specialists
  4. Financial Dealers
  5. Psychiatrists
  6. Other Medical Practitioners
  7. Judicial and other Legal Professionals
  8. Mining Engineers
  9. CEO and Managing Directors
  10. Engineering Managers
Top industries in Australia
  1. Finance
  2. Professional Services
  3. Consumer Goods Retailing
  4. Health Services
  5. National and Regional Commercial Banks
  6. Iron Ore Mining
  7. Supermarkets and Grocery Stores
  8. Public General Hospitals
  9. Coal Mining
  10. General Insurance

Unique International Student Experience

The Land Down Under is chock-full of recreational activities for international students. When students are having a break from school, Australia offers different activities to make their stay fun and memorable.

Australia is blessed with beautiful beaches where students can go surfing, snorkeling, scuba diving, rafting, or sailing. Students can also explore more of the great outdoors by hiking, mountain climbing, spelunking and four-wheeling.

For indoor activities, international students can learn more about Australia, its history, and its people by visiting the museums, art galleries, and libraries.

Australians are also big sports lovers, and international students can participate in the sport culture by watching games and joining school teams. Some of the most popular sports that Australians enjoy are cricket, Australian rules football, rugby league, and tennis.

Student Visa Application Process

Prerequisites

To be eligible to apply for a student visa in Australia, you must first get accepted into an education institution in the country. The requirements and application deadlines may differ depending on the school you are applying to.

Once you meet the course requirements and you get accepted, you will get an offer letter from the institution and you will be required to pay for a tuition deposit. After paying the required amount, you will be sent a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) that you will be using for your visa application.

In addition, since education institutions in Australia use English as the primary language of instruction, international students may also be required to provide evidence of English language proficiency.

To prepare for studies in Australia, international students can take an English proficiency test and have their results ready when applying for a visa. The minimum test score required varies depending on the country of citizenship, level of study, and the desired institution.

Students can take the test from any of the different test providers approved by the Australian government. These are the following: IELTS, TOEFL iBT, PTE Academic, OET, or the Cambridge C1 Advanced Test.

It’s important to note that students must have completed their English test no more than two years before submitting their visa application.

For the other prerequisites, you should also obtain an insurance called the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC), and for those who are applying for a visa younger than 18 years old, you must prepare welfare arrangements.

All international students applying for a visa also need to prepare proof that they have enough funds for the length of their stay in Australia. This should cover your airfares, allowances, accommodation, tuition fees, living costs, and other expenses.

Student visa application

International students applying for a visa to study in Australia can do so via the Australian Government’s online visa service called ImmiAccount. Students can create, submit, and pay for their visa application on the platform.

It is recommended that you gather and complete all the necessary documents before going through the application process. Aside from the English test results, CoE, and OSHC, you must have a valid passport ready.

In addition, you must first get a certification that your plan for staying in Australia will be temporary. Your certification may be in a form of a proof of future employment in a company in your home country.

The student visa application process in Australia may require you to submit additional documents depending on your home country, university you plan to study at, and other factors.

If you are going through the process of student visa application online, you need to obtain very clear scanned copies of the required documents. For documents that are not written in English, you must have them translated by a certified translator.

You must apply for a visa 124 days before your course in Australia starts. This start date is indicated in the CoE. After filling up all relevant information, you will need to pay the visa fee, which is currently at AUD 620 for most international students. There may be possible checkups or interviews that you need to undertake depending on the assessment of your application.

Student visa processing times vary. For regular courses, it may take more or less four weeks for the application to be processed. Once a decision has been made, you will get an email from the Australian Government on the result of your application. You just need to print a copy of the visa grant letter as proof when you travel to Australia.

Travel checklist

Once you have received your approval to begin your studies in Australia, you must prepare for your travel. Remember to pack for the weather, bring copies of your documents, and avoid bringing prohibited items.

When it comes to money you will be bringing to Australia, if you wish to bring any physical currency that, when combined, will amount to AUD 10,000 or more, you must declare it by filling up a form from the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC). You need to submit the filled-up AUSTRAC form to an Australian Border Force officer at the airport when you arrive in Australia.

For non-cash forms of money, this will be treated differently. These are called bearer negotiable instruments (BNIs). You must print and accomplish another AUSTRAC form if you wish to bring any form of BNIs such as cheques, promissory notes, traveller’s cheques, bearer bonds, or postal/money order. However, you will only show this to the border officer if you are asked.

Tuition Payment & Other Expenses

As you arrive in Australia, you must be ready to pay for your tuition and living expenses. To avoid problems during your stay, you must prepare your budget for a year, if possible. To give you some information on the estimated expenses, please refer to the following:

Tuition Fees
  • Undergraduate courses: yearly tuition may range from AUD 20,000 to AUD 45,000.
  • Master’s degree: yearly tuition may range from AUD 22,000 to AUD 50,000.
  • Doctoral degree: yearly tuition may range from AUD 18,000.00 to AUD 42,000.00.
Living and Accommodation Costs
Type of Expense Cost per month (AUD)
Accommodation 1,760.00
Groceries and meals 1,120.00
Gas & electricity 80.00
Phone & Internet 120.00
Public transport 240.00
Entertainment 600.00
TOTAL AUD 3,920.00

Financial Assistance & Work Options

One of the perks of getting a student visa in Australia is that it permits students to work.

Undergraduate students are allowed to work for 40 hours every two weeks during their studies. You can start working as soon as your course starts. For those studying their masters or PhD, there are no limits given to their working hours.

For those who wish to avail of scholarships to help in their studies in Australia, you’ll be glad to know that there are many scholarships, grants, and bursaries available to international students. These scholarship programs are offered by the Australian Government, private and public organisations, and education providers such as universities and colleges.

Download Australia Study Guide