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A Quick Guide to Pursuing College Studies in Oz

Australia is the 3rd most popular study destination, after US and UK, for international students. This English-speaking continent-country boasts of some of the world’s best facilities and educators providing students with a range of quality study options through its 1,100 academic institutions. Australia also has a sizeable Indian diaspora that is growing with 60,062 Indian students taking a flight to down under in 2017-18.

Students prefer to opt for a range of courses in engineering and technology, accounting, physical sciences, health sciences, arts and humanities. Cutting-edge niche courses like big data, international tourism and the internet of things are also vastly popular among students seeking to align themselves with the current international job market. Moreover, Australian cities like Sydney and Melbourne offer students exciting entertainment options in music, literature, adventure sports, etc.

Owing to its high standard of living, studying in Australia can be expensive but fortunately, the Australian government and most universities offer generous scholarships covering tuition and living costs. Students are also allowed to work for 20 hours a week during their study tenure. Post-degree you can work for up to 2 years in Australia depending upon your visa category.

According to studying-in-australia.org, 8 Australian universities feature among the global QS top 100 for literature, engineering and technology, biological sciences, environmental sciences, accounting and finance, anthropology, law and education. Take a look at the Group of Eight (Go8) before you go, “How ya doing, mate!”

Group of Eight (Go8) Universities

  1. Australian National University

    Founded in 1946 by the Parliament of Australia, ANU is ranked 1st in Oceania and 24th in the world by 2019 QS World University Rankings. This public university is located in the Australian capital, Canberra and is home to 25,500 students.

    It has 7 colleges offering teaching and research in the fields of arts and social sciences, Asia-Pacific studies, business and economics, engineering and computer science, law, medicine, biology and environment, physical and mathematical sciences. High-ranking courses include anthropology, politics & international studies, development studies, earth & marine sciences, etc. Undergraduate fees range from AUD 24,000 to AUD 45,600 per year. For postgraduate and doctoral courses, it ranges from AUD 42,000 to AUD 83,000. Depending upon the number of credits taken per year, Student Services and Amenities fee of up to AUD 298 is also charged.

    ANU offers a spate of scholarships ranging from AUD 1000 to 100% tuition fee waiver. Find out more about scholarships at ANU.

  2. University of Melbourne

    Ranked 6th in the world by 2019 QS Graduate Employability Rankings, University of Melbourne is a public university with 50,270 students out of which close to 40% are international. It offers various undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral degrees with courses like law, psychology, economics, business studies and engineering popular with international students. UG course fees lie between AUD 27,808 (performing arts) to AUD 81,952 (medicine) per year. PG course fees lie between AUD 31,136 (fine arts) to AUD 63,072 (health sciences). GMAT score of 680 and above with 2.5 years of work experience is necessary for admission to the MBA program. For Master’s program, a GRE score 300 and above is needed. Find out more about University of Melbourne.

  3. The University of Sydney

    The University of Sydney has consistently made it to the top 50 universities of the world. Established in 1850, the university houses 6 faculties, 3 schools and numerous research centres offering more than 400 undergraduate, postgraduate, doctoral and certificate courses. Student enrolment lies at 54,306 out of which 22.6% are international. Course fees per year lie between AUD 37,000 (BA Visual Arts) through AUD 46,500 (MBA and related courses) to AUD 78,000 (for Bachelor of Medicine). An IELTS score of 7 and above or TOEFL score of 95 above is necessary for making it to most courses. A host of scholarship options ranging from AUD 5,000 to AUD 150,000 are available. Check out scholarship options at the University of Sydney.

  4. University of New South Wales

    UNSW is one of Australia’s leading research and teaching universities. Founded in 1949, this public university comprises 9 faculties through which it offers a wide range of bachelors, masters and doctoral courses. UNSW has international exchange and research partnerships with over 200 universities across the world. Ranked highly for its engineering programs, especially civil engineering, mechanical engineering, remote sensing, instrumentation, etc. student tally at the university stands at more than 52,582 with 25% and 50% international students enrolled in UG and PG programs respectively. Course fees lie between AUD 32,400 (BA Fine Arts) through AUD 41,760 (BE courses) to AUD 66,480 (Bachelor of Medicine and related courses). Admission to bachelors and masters programs does not require entrance test scores but are made on the basis of qualifying exam scores. For information on cut-offs and scholarships, visit UNSW’s official website.

  5. University of Queensland

    Located in Brisbane, Queensland’s capital city, UQ is a public research university that was established in 1909. The university has 6 faculties offering various graduate, postgraduate and doctoral programs. Highly-ranked courses are MBA, mining engineering, civil engineering, chemical engineering, materials science, electrical and electronic engineering, life sciences and environmental engineering. Course fees lie to the tune of AUD 42,768 (BE courses) to AUD 70,080 (Bachelor of Dental Sciences and related fields). For more information on programs and courses, visit UQ’s official website.

  6. Monash University

    Established in 1958, Monash, located in Melbourne, is a relatively younger member of the Go8. This public research university houses 10 faculties and around 100 research centres offering bachelors, masters, combined bachelors and masters, PhDs and diplomas. Greatly preferred by domestic and international students for its courses related to the field of medicine, this university has an excellent reputation in engineering and technology fields too. Course fees for Bachelor of Medicine are AUD 77,000. International students are expected to fulfil certain entry criteria and subject pre-requisites. Find out more about these on monash.edu.

  7. University of Western Australia

    UWA is a public research university located in Perth, Western Australia. With a Romanesque-style campus set in a breathtaking landscape, this university ranks among the top 100 of the world. Course fees range from AUD 31,000 (for various BA Honors courses) to AUD 63,800 (for Bachelor of Medicine and related courses). Find out more about University of Western Australia here.

  8. University of Adelaide

    The University of Adelaide is the third oldest University in Australia. Located in Adelaide, South Australia, this university has 5 faculties with various constituent schools offering courses in engineering and technology, health sciences, arts and music, and physical sciences. Course fees lie between AUD 32,000 (for BA courses) to AUD 63,800 (for Bachelor of Medicine and related courses). Find out more about University of Adelaide.

    Some other costs like Student Services and Amenities fee, additional administrative expenses are specific to each university and the best source of such information is the university’s website. Additionally, all international students in Australia are required to have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for their entire study duration. This is compulsory insurance that students should arrange for prior to applying for the Australian visa. Visit Department of Home Affairs, Government of Australia for more information on OHSC and visa requirements.

Are Go8 universities the best universities to study in Australia?

The real answer to this question lies in what are you looking for during your study-abroad tryst. If you wish to attend large public universities with high student diversity, go for the Go8. These universities are really good at attracting research funding and definitely offer programs of high value, but some students may find them to be impersonal and the professors to be somewhat inaccessible. Moreover, not all courses in the Go8 may fetch you a high paying job, something that is high on the list of priorities of many international students.

So make sure that you extensively research the programs that you are interested in. You can also take advice from an experienced study-abroad consultant. There are some other Non-Go8 universities that are worthy of consideration too. Notable mentions are: the University of Technology-Sydney, RMIT University and University of South Australia.

What about placements?

Three words. Proactivity, networking and skills.

International students at Go8 have the option of attending career fairs and career forums set up by career services division of their university. Well-paying jobs won’t land in your lap by themselves; you would need to be proactive and prompt at showcasing your skills at all times. Network well with your Australian professors. Be on the lookout for job opportunities for international students. Register on websites like alljobs.com.au, timeshighereducation.com/unijobs, jobsearch.gov.au etc. the moment you begin your course.

As elsewhere, some fields of study are more in demand on the job front than others. If you have opted for such courses/electives, they will stand you in good stead.

What comes after studies?

Chances are that if you decide to pursue your UG/PG studies abroad, you would prefer to stay there for a few years post-study so that you can gain work experience or pursue a higher degree. You may also wish to settle there permanently. The Skilled Graduate Temporary visa allows international students to stay in Australia for 18 months after degree completion to gain work experience. Find out more about post-study work visas in Australia.

Some other useful sources of information:

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