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The basics
Australia: Destination Guides

Study in Australia: What's it really like?

We tell you everything you know about studying in Australia as a European student

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Tempted to study in Australia? You're not alone. Every year students from around the world travel to Australia to experience beaches, koalas and world-class universities. Many Europeans find the country pleasant as you can speak English and get an international degree - and even escape the European winters!


The Aussies are also known to be very welcoming and friendly, and you are bound to get friends for life. The only downside to studying is the cost of flight tickets and potentially high tuition fees. Read this guide for more information about everything Australia has to offer students.


Top universities


As mentioned, Australia is well-known for their higher educational system – but they come with a price tag. However, there are lots of scholarships you can apply for, and in your research process you should investigate which ones you are eligible for. As European students there are already quite a few you can apply for, and you can read more about them here. Check out our article on how to apply to an Australian university.


The University of Queensland. Photo: addianto


The top universities in Australia are:


  1. University of Melbourne. Especially known for its well-renowned medical school.
  2. Australian National University. Ranks well in a lot of subjects, but particularly Social Sciences, Management, Arts and Humanities
  3. University of Sydney. Ranks well in English Language and Literature, History and Archaeology, Linguistics and Civil Engineering and Structural Engineering. Their Masters of Management programme is also very popular.
  4. University of Queensland. Known to have a strong research focus on science, medicine and technology.
  5. University of New South Wales. Features Australia's largest cancer research facilities. Also ranks well in Social Sciences.
Sources: QS Top Universities, Times Higher, ARWU, and US News, ERA and 5 Star rankings


Fees and costs


An HSBC study found that foreign students were having to fork out more than AUS$43,000 or around £20,000 pounds a year on average to study at Australian universities, including the living costs. Note that some universities are more expensive than others, and some popular courses can be more pricey (for instance veterinary and medical studies). Please visit institution websites directly to see costs for these courses.


Additionally a flight ticket from Europe can be quite expensive. Generally the cheapest tickets will be on sale from September to November, but that does not exactly fit the educational calendar! Planning well ahead might help you save money as some airlines will have ticket on sale etc. Check websites such as Expedia to determine which flights will fit you best.


There are a lot of scholarships to help international students, so don't be scared off just yet! Check out how to three scholarships you can apply for here.



Practical information


The main intake for universities is in February each year, but they also have a second intake in July. Course duration ranges from three to four years for undergraduate courses, and one to two years for postgraduate programmes.


You will also require a visa to travel to the country to study, which you can only apply for after you have accepted an offer from a university. You will also need proof of funds to cover course fees and living expenses. For further information on this topic read our Australian student visa article.





Top universities require top students, but it is not all about geeking out in the library. Australia has a lot to offer, and it would be a shame not to take in the culture. Australia is of course a huge country, and you will have a different lifestyle if you study in a cosmopolitan city in comparison to the countryside. Make sure you have some time to explore the country - you have not properly been to Australia without seeing at least one kangaroo!


Cities such as Sydney, Adelaide and Victoria have a vast range of shops, clubs, gyms, cafes - you name it. If you live near the beach make sure to take a few surfing classes to really embrace the Aussie lifestyle.


It’s also generally easy to find a part-time job so that you can make ends meet while studying. Not to mention that it is a great way to meet new people.


Start your study abroad adventure in Australia today by checking out the courses available to you or by getting more specific advice about studying in Australia.

Study in Australia


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