Australian qualifications and institutions are recognized globally for their high quality and excellence in academics. Graduates from Australia are very successful in finding jobs and hold prominent positions worldwide. Furthermore, they are readily accepted for further studies at leading international universities.
Geographically Australia situates 11,000 kilometers southwest of North America and 3,200 kilometers southeast of mainland Asia. The largest island and the smallest continent in the world, the country is rich in flora and fauna.
Australia is blessed with temperate climate and the highlands and tablelands of Tasmania and the south eastern corner of the mainland are the coldest areas. It is a land of bright sunshine, surf beaches, tropical rivers, rainforests, mountain ranges, red deserts and rich green coastal plains. Summer is from December to February; autumn from March to May; winter from June to August; and spring from September to November.
Australia is country of dynamic multiculturalism with invaluable contributions from migrants from all parts of the world. Australia owns a rich tradition of art and culture. Australians provide strong support towards films, music, theatre, painting and a range of other fine arts forms. They are also a strong global presence regarding sports.
The transportation options at Australia are wide and well equipped. It has an extensive public transport system that includes trains, buses, tramways, ferries, two major national airlines and a number of regional airlines. Metropolitan areas are divided into zones and your ticket type and cost depends on which zone you are going to travel in and for how long. Tickets are sold at train stations, on buses and trams and at news agencies.
International students in Australia with student visa can apply for permission to work. Students are permitted to work 20 hours per week during semesters and full-time during vacation periods. In some cases family members can apply for permission to work. It is not difficult to find part time jobs in Australia to supplement your living expenses. You can only apply for a visa with work rights after you arrive in Australia and have begun studying.
Australia is one among the few countries, which promote skilled migrant programs targeting young people having skills, education and abilities that will contribute to the Australian economy. International students with Australian qualifications account for about half the people assessed under the skilled migrant programs. There is a dearth of skilled manpower in Australia mainly in the fields of Information Technology, nursing and Accounting. Applicants must pass a points test and satisfy some basic requirements in order to get permanent residency (PR) in Australia. These include a minimum age limit of 45 years, English language proficiency, post-secondary school qualifications or work experience relevant to your occupation. Additional points are awarded to applicants with Australian qualifications.
One of the important requirements for a student visa application to Australia is that, the student must be accepted for enrolment, to undertake a course, by a Government registered Australian education institution. This is ensured by verifying the advice of acceptance from the Australian institution (Letter Offer).
The financial background of the student will be checked and the sponsors (parents or relatives) have to produce the related documents of at least 6 months prior to the pre-visa application date. The evidence of cash assets will be sufficient enough to show that the applicant is able to afford the education and cost of living at Australia. It is compulsory for all international students to have a minimum band score of 6.0 or 5.5 (for diploma courses) in IELTS
Normally the processing of application may take a four (4) to six (6) week timeframe. If you are advised that you meet the PVA requirements, you will be asked to undergo further processing. This includes payment of course tuition fee to the Australian educational institution and a medical examination. It is essential that the student and the accompanying dependent(s) meet the Australian Health requirements before a visa may be granted
The students have to obtain Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for the duration of the visa. The premium for OSHC is only to be paid once the PVA requirements have been met. The current premiums for OSHC are AUD274 for a single person and AIJD54S for a whole family.
All students have to demonstrate a minimum level of proficiency, measured by an IELTS overall band score of at least 6.0, except those enrolling for a Diploma course (VET) in which case 5.5 is acceptable. Please note that TOEFL score is not acceptable and IELTS is compulsory even if the student has studied in English medium institutions throughout his/her academic career.
TOEFL is Test of English as a Foreign Language. The test is conducted by ETS (Educational Testing Service) and the test fee is $130. Those who want to study in UK have to clear the test with definite scores.
The score is valid for 2 years and the score is sent to 4 universities by ETS free of cost at the time of exam. ETS charges additionally for scores sent to universities later. For more info visit the official website at www.toefl.org or www.ets.org
International English Language Testing System is normally known as IELTS which is administered by University of Cambridge Local Examination Syndicate (UCLES) , British Council and IDP Education Australia.
The score of IELTS is valid for 2 years. The test fee comprises Rs. 7900/. For more info visit the official website at www.britishcouncil.org or www.ieltsindia.com. Students can make registration either in person or by mail.
For postgraduate programs, most of the good universities prefer a first class: however there are universities, which accept students with high second class. In the undergraduate level, most of the good universities look for 70% or higher in +2/PUC. However there are students who have been admitted to good universities with just a high second-class degree.
Most common admission intakes are in February and July. In addition, some universities admit students in Oct/November term for programs like MBA/MIT. The students need to plan well in advance due to the fact that the embassy takes about 6-8 weeks for the PVA (Provisional Visa Announcement) and final visa.
COURSES & UNIVERSITIES
The most popular courses for Indian students in Australia are MPA (Master of Professional Accounting), MBA, MIB (International Business). MIT /MIS (Master of Professional Accounting) MBA, MIB (International Business), MIT / MIS (Master of Information technology/ systems), MHM (Master of Hospitality/Tourism Management) Engineering, Law Biotechnology etc. One salient feature of Australian MBA is that most of the good universities have incorporated bridging programs to their MBA programs and students without any work experience can join MBA programs in most of the premier universities.
Most of the Masters degrees vary from one year to two years depending on the university /college and the background of the student. There are universities in Australia who have fast track undergraduate programs, where students can finish the courses in less than two and half years thereby saving considerable amount of money and time.
In Australia accommodation will not be a problem for international students. There are several options like university flats or halls of residence, private accommodation or home-stays or farm-stays. Most of the students opt for university accommodation since it makes the university life much livelier. It makes you mingle with other students on a long term. Generally, there are three types of housing available to students.
The on campus housing provides halls of residence and this can be sometimes hard to secure as spaces are limited. Fees will vary depending on which school you attend, and most provide meals and some furniture.
The student can stay at flat or rental houses during their academic education preferably in the second or third year. Housing off campus can have many pitfalls and one need to be careful in choosing the house and entering to its lease contract. It would be wise to group together with other students to either rent a house or flat with fees varying depending on your location and size of dwelling.
Home stay is available in Australia which is a good option for those who want to experience the real Australian culture as it will involve living with an Australian family either with your own private room, or shared. Generally meals are included with home stays. There are various home stay companies and packages that help you in finding suitable home stay.
COSTThe annual tuition fee varies from AU$ 16000 to AU$ 28000 (i.e. Rs 8 lakhs to Rs. 14 lakhs) depending on the university or college. Approximate annual living expenses of an Indian student would be in the range of AU$ 12000 to AU$ 18000. The average international student in Australia spends about $320 per week on housing, food, clothing, entertainment, transport, international and domestic travel, and telephone and incidental costs.