10 Things to Know Before Studying in Australia
Australia, the third most popular study destination for international students, after the USA and UK, is home to the eight most popular universities of the world. The Australian tertiary education, comprising of many vocational colleges and universities, has over 22,000 courses on offer for foreign students.
Millions of students aspire to study in Australia. Are you one of them? Have you got your heart set on studying in Australia too? If yes, then here are the 10 most crucial things you ought to remember before you pack your bags and hop a plane to the ‘Land Down Under’.
The very first step prior to moving to Australia is that you conduct a quick research regarding the right institution or university and course. Also compare the colleges and then go for the “applying for the right college” process. Go through the institution rankings, population of international students in that institution, the facilities provided by the colleges, the institute’s faculty and whether or not the library and other academic support services are made available.
Since it is not feasible to conduct such a thorough research within a short span of time, you can consult counselors who are EATC certified.
Once your search is complete, you need to apply to the institutions as early as possible, albeit the institutions do not set any deadlines for international student applications. Double check all the necessary supporting documentations and get certified copies made before you apply.
You can apply through certified education agents or directly through the institution’s website.
Once you have received your offer letter (presumably about three weeks after applying) you will need to read it very carefully and then accept it. Make sure that all information on the letter is correct, right from the course details to tuition fees and other such amounts.
Applying for a Student Visa
As an international student, to study in Australia, you will need a student visa, obviously. This requires a certain level of mental preparation. Though not a tedious process, this is the last step which can break or make your dreams of studying Australia. From your interests to you post study intentions, you need to set the right impression on the visa officer.
A little prep talk by your counselor won’t hurt you.
Get Your Health Insurance
To study in Australia, you are required to have a proper health package called Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) which must be maintained for the entire duration of your studies in Australia. It is one of the precautionary measures, meant for international students in Australia, during any medical emergencies. You can organize your OSHC through your institution or by yourself with one of the various agencies; and choose the right package that best suits you.
Australia has very high living standards which mean education in the country is pricey and so is housing, food, healthcare among other expenses. But that should not be an obstacle because Australian Universities are known for their generous scholarships for international students ranging from partial to full coverage. Once again, since it is a strenuous job to keep track of all scholarships and financials, consulting your certified counselor makes the task easier.
Once you have received your offer and student visa, apply for accommodation as soon as possible. It will be easy for you if you can find accommodation at on-campus colleges and residences or independent student apartments. Many institutions also help you in organizing your accommodation. The education agencies with their alumni placed in Australia can connect you to them and this problem can be solved easily.
Changes in Terms of Grades
Prepare yourself getting used to new grades in your new institutions for the Australian institutions use letters to assess your work. They use HD for high distinction, D for distinction, Cr for credit, P for pass and F for fail. Not only this, but be prepared for a new study environment and experience.
Chance to Work Part-Time
Many student visas allow you to work in Australia for a certain period of time, i.e., if you want to work part-time during your breaks you are permitted to do so. This, in a way, helps in minimizing your expenses.
Students are allowed to work for 20 hours per week while studying with the minimum wage being $17.70 per hour. But you need to remember that you can work only after the commencement of new classes. And the Australian government regularly keeps updating the working policies. So, it is advisable to check for those details in the immigration website www.homeaffairs.gov.au/
Australia has a wide array of public transport options such as buses, trains, light rail etc. These transportation are well-developed and the services offered have dependable timetables. Some places also have concession fares for students. This makes moving around the cities easier, economical and convenient.
These are a few of the essential things to know while studying in Australia. Therefore, make sure you get yourself all prepared and all packed before you place your feet on the land down under.