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The basics
Australia: Applying to University

Nigerian students applying to an Australian university

Practical advice for Nigerian students applying to study in Australia

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Applying to study in Australia might seem daunting. There are various entry requirements and preferred qualifications at different institutions, so it’s essential that you do your research. Thanks to our step-by-step guide of the process, completing your application should be a breeze.


Academic requirements for successful admission

Australian institutions have various entry requirements and Nigerian students are advised to contact institutions directly to obtain full details. General guidance on entry requirements for the different levels of study includes the following:

  • English language - Entry requirements vary between institutions and between visas that you wish to apply for
  • Schools - Entry requirements vary between schools depending on the state or territory you will be studying in. Academic performance and ability is considered during the application process
  • Vocational education and training - In most cases there are no entrance exams for VET institutions. However, some courses may have specific prerequisite subjects or work experience requirements
  • Higher Education Undergraduate - To gain entry into an Australian undergraduate course you will need to have an overseas equivalent to Australian Senior Secondary Certificate of Education (Year 12). Some undergraduate courses may also have specific pre-requisite subjects
  • Higher Education Postgraduate - As well as the satisfactory completion of at least one degree at undergraduate level, your institution may take research ability or relevant work experience into consideration

Tip: To meet the academic requirements of an Australian high school qualification, consider taking a Foundation course - an intensive one year programme that will help you meet the entry requirements.


Australian undergraduate programmes


Teaching methods at bachelor level are similar to British universities and are comprised of a mixture of lectures, seminars and tutorials, with industry placements.


Supporting documents for undergraduate degrees


  • Photocopy of the personal details page of your passport
  • Original certificates/evidence of GCSE and AS Level results (or equivalents) plus details of final predicted grades. Predicted grades must be official predictions, issued on school/college letterhead and signed by an appropriate person (if applying before completion of school leaving qualifications)
  • Original certificates for GCSE and school leaving qualifications (A Levels, IB, Pre University Diploma) if applying after completion of school
  • Personal statement (usually 400-500 words)


Australian postgraduate programmes


These may include Master of Engineering, Master of Marketing, Master of Arts and other master programmes. Nigerian students will usually need to have an undergraduate degree in the same or in a strongly relevant subject, to the one they want to study at master’s level. These courses can be taken by coursework or by research, or by a combination of the two.


Supporting documents for postgraduate degree


  • Photocopy of the personal details page of your passport
  • Original academic transcripts for each year of your undergraduate degree (transcripts should carry an explanation of the university's grading system on the back)
  • Original bachelor’s completion certificate
  • CV, detailing any relevant work experience
  • Personal statement (normally 400-500 words)


Application deadlines


The academic year in Australia starts in February, although most universities have intakes twice a year. Semester 1 runs from February to June and semester 2 from July to November. The university application assessment usually takes between three to six weeks if you are applying for a bachelor’s degree, and around four to eight weeks for a postgraduate application. Research applications often take longer, as do applications for courses that have strict quotas on the number of places available including medicine, dentistry and clinical psychology. Nigerian students who carefully prepare their applications in advance will get responses sooner, allowing them to plan their Australian study abroad adventure with plenty of time.


Useful links:

The Australian higher education system...simplified

Post-study work options in Australia

Study in Australia


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