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Why study in Australia

When choosing a study destination overseas there are a number of important things to think about before reaching your decision. Australia has a world-class education and training system, which welcomes students from other countries.

Students go to Australia from many countries because of the high standard of education offered and because Australia is an attractive, friendly, beautiful and safe place to live.

Why study in Australia

The Australian Government and Australian education and training providers have joined forces to establish the Australian International Education Foundation (AIEF) to promote internationally the high quality and standard of education, training and research opportunities which Australia has to offer. The partnership embodied in the AIEF reflects the commitment from all parties to promote and deliver quality education and training services and to pursue excellence in international study and research.

Australian education institutions offer a broad spectrum of courses ranging from English language training at school to advanced areas of post-doctoral work. There are also opportunities for international students, teachers and university staff to undertake study or research in Australia through award and exchange arrangements. Flexible programs of study, which can combine English language courses with study in other fields, are also available to cater to the diverse needs of international students.

Australia compares very favourably with other more traditional destinations considered by international students. In 2002, nearly 80,000 students from over 12 countries came to study in Australia.

Below are some of the reasons to help you in your final decision - which may well be one of the most important decisions in your career.

  • Australia's education system is of the highest international standard.

  • Degrees, diplomas and other awards receive worldwide recognition.

  • For students coming from Asia and the South Pacific there are frequent direct air connections to the east and west coast of Australia. We also have similar time zones.

  • Australia's multi-cultural society makes it a very attractive option for both non-English speaking and English speaking students.

  • Because of Australia's vast size and the consistently high standard of education and training delivery, one of the most difficult decisions for any international student will be deciding where to study. Universities, colleges and schools are not only situated in all the larger cities, but many are also located in small rural towns and coastal villages.

  • Australia's size also offers an enormous diversity of climate to suit all tastes. Choices range from cool and moist to hot and tropical, with regions in between enjoying a warm temperate climate.

  • Most institutions offer excursions for international students to places of interest, both locally and, quite often much further afield. Australia is one of the most beautiful countries in the world to discover and should be a priority for any overseas visitor. Australia's living conditions are among the highest in the world and the generally fine weather encourages a healthy, relaxed lifestyle with a strong emphasis on outdoor life and sport. There is an abundance of fresh, local produce, meat and local seafoods. Specialty imported foods are also widely available.

  • Living and tuition costs compare favourably with other countries of a similar standard Australia is strongly promoted as a multi-cultural society and has become home to a wide variety of citizens from numerous ethnic backgrounds. International students should have no difficulty in meeting others from their home country, and neighbouring countries in their region.

  • Below are some of the reasons to help you in your final decision - which may well be one of the most important decisions in your career. 

Universities in Australia 

Higher education in Australia has long enjoyed an international reputation for excellence where quality across the system has been of paramount importance. Australian universities are part of a clearly recognised international community of scholarship, the foundations of which are the creation, preservation and dissemination of knowledge.

Academic staff in Australian universities are recruited from around the world, and Australian academic staff and graduates are eagerly recruited in other countries. The willingness of leading international universities to accept graduates from Australian universities for admission to postgraduate studies provides a clear indication of the high acceptance of the quality of output of Australian universities.

To a large extent it is this inbuilt aspiration for international recognition, which provides continuing assurance of the quality and standards of Australian institutions.

Most Australian universities are internationalising their campuses by actively encouraging student and staff exchange programs and the development of international curricula and research collaboration. The first Australian university was established in 1850. By 1911, principal universities were established in each major city. Today there are 38 universities throughout Australia. These universities have an excellent reputation in other countries, including the USA and Britain. They also rank highly in modern computer facilities and technologies.

Australian universities offer two levels of study:

  • undergraduate - including Diplomas, Advanced Diplomas and Bachelor Degrees; and

  • Postgraduate - including Graduate Diplomas and Certificates, Masters Degrees by either coursework or research, and Doctoral Degrees.

University award outcomes and length or course

Students generally begin their major/specialisation in their first year of study and can complete their Bachelors Degree in a minimum of three years in disciplines such as general science, business, information technology and arts. Education, engineering and law degrees require four years of study while medicine takes longer. For graduate studies most universities require a prerequisite of four years of study in the particular subject area for which graduate enrolment is desired.

Many students consider enrolling in a Graduate Diploma course, which is a one-year graduate program in Australia that can enable students to qualify for a masters program. Masters Degrees are based upon research or coursework (or a combination). Increasingly, Australian universities are offering coursework Masters degrees of one year to 18 months.
 
Most postgraduate degrees are by research only, which means you pay tuition fees to perform research work at the campus, but may not have a set schedule of lectures and tutorials to attend In most cases a thesis is required before a student is eligible to graduate.

Academic requirements

Australian universities place more emphasis on understanding and applying concepts and theories and being able to examine critically different arguments and viewpoints than on route learning. Students are expected to participate in class discussions and to ask questions if they do not understand something. Most universities offer counselling services and assistance to students to develop effective study skills.

Entry into Australian universities is determined by each institution's own assessment of how a student's existing qualifications compare with the content of the Australian institution's courses. The same method of assessment will be undertaken by foreign universities presented with Australian degrees. In assessing a student's academic standing, an Australian institution will look at both the level and the content of the courses completed by the applicant.

Australian universities operate on a semester basis. For the majority of universities, the first semester begins in mid February and ends in late June. Second semester begins in mid July and ends in late November. Summer break occurs during December and January. There are mid semester breaks which occur during both semesters of the year. The timing of semesters at private universities may vary slightly. Entry into Australian universities is highly competitive and it is advisable to apply for admission to more than one university. 

Study abroad programs

Study abroad programs are available on a fee-paying basis to students who wish to study in Australia for one or two semesters and count the subjects towards their degree/diploma at their home university. Study abroad programs are available at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Undergraduate students should normally have completed at least one to two years of their degree.

Where to go for more Information

Students wanting further information on study in Australia can contact their nearest Australian Education Centre or Australian Diplomatic Mission. 

Australian Education Centres (AECs) are another facility provided to help intending students. AECs are located in Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taipei. These centres provide general information, counselling and advice. Information seminars, providing detailed information on study opportunities in Australia, are held on a regular basis. Australia has education and training counsellors posted to Australian Diplomatic Missions in Bangkok, Beijing, Hanoi, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, New Delhi, Seoul, Teipei, Tokyo and Paris. Information can also be obtained from other Australian Diplomatic Missions. 

For more information on studying in Australia contact: 
Tel: (616) 240 7111 
or write to: The Australian International Education Foundation, Locked Bag 8800, GPO Canberra ACT 2601

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