Studying in Australia
Formal education in Australia comprises 6 years primary education, 6 years secondary education, and the final of which being the matriculation year. Undergraduate study generally takes 3 to 5 years.
Australia's education system is very flexible and offers a whole range of study options. There are 5 sectors in the education system, namely
- University studies
- Vocational education and training (TAFE)
- Foundation studies
- English language studies
- Primary and secondary education
There are 38 public universities (government funded) and 2 private universities, offering a comprehensive range of courses for international students.
Foundation studies were developed to prepare international students for undergraduate studies at the universities. Usually, Foundation Studies are conducted at the university the student plan to attend and the university will hold a provisional place for the student in the undergraduate course.
Foundation studies usually take 1 year and are divided into streams, such as business studies or science studies.
Vocational Education & Training
Courses are mostly very practical and there is less abstract learning then in some university courses. They prepare students to work in a recognized trade, industry, enterprise and pre professional career.
Vocational education and training is provided at Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutes, which are government-owned or at private institutions. TAFE institutes can be compared to polytechnics, technical institutes and community or industrial training institutes.
Tertiary Education Courses
It is the basic requirement for most of the professions such as accounting, economics, engineering and computer technology.
Designed for more job-specific or vocational areas, and include an intensive study program. Primarily, students pursue for a Graduate Certificate to further develop professional knowledge and skills. It takes 6 months of full-time study.
Similar to Graduate Certificate but more advanced and it takes 1 year of full-time study to complete.
Master Degrees can be undertaken by coursework or research. Coursework Master Degrees usually take 12 to 18 months, while Master Degrees through research take about 2 years of full-time study.
PhDs usually take around 3 years full time. One will have to demonstrate an original contribution to a particular field of study, produce a substantial thesis and usually undertake an original research project.
Bachelor Degree Courses
Language Requirements: Admission into an Australian university often requires a proper English as a Second Language certification, which can be obtained through passing one of the following:
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS) – min 5.5
- Occupational English Test (OET) – min Pass A or B
- Test of English as a Foreign Language internet-Based Test (TOEFL iBT) – min 46
- Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic – min 42
- Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) test - min 162
Typical acceptance criteria (STPM/ Foundation/ Pre-U results)
- SPM is equivalent to the Australian Secondary School Certificate (Year 10)
- STPM results are equivalent to Australian Senior Secondary Certificate (Year 12)
A proven record of academic achievements up to Form 5 and forecast SPM results are acceptable.
English Language Requirement:
TOEFL 550+ (with no band less than 5.0), or
A score of 5.5 in IELTS (not less than 5.0), or
A score of C or better in GCE "O" Level (1119 English), or
A score of C5 or better in SPM.
SPM with 4 passes in relevant subjects are required. Besides, students must show financial capacity to meet fees and living/travel expenses, be of good health and character.
Often, one's home country qualification will be considered equal to its Australian counterpart. For example, a Bachelor Degree from many Malaysian universities will be assessed as comparable to an Australian Bachelor Degree.
To qualify for a Master Degree, a Bachelor Degree (preferably with Honors) plus a qualifying year of study or equivalent professional experience are required.
The Australian government estimated that a student would need about A$20,290 per year, or RM60,106; which works out to around RM5,000 per month.
Malaysian students can work for a maximum of 40 hours over the course of two weeks during the study period, and unlimited hours during the semester breaks.
If you are a student in Australia for masters by research or a doctoral degree, there is no limit to the number of hours you can work.
Most education institutions have accommodation officers who give advice on housing and expenses and even help students to organize on-campus accommodation.
Application For Admission
We will assist the students to apply to the individual institutions they are interested in. Admission is in February each year. Applications generally close in late October each year, however, some institutions also offer enrolment in mid-year (July) for certain courses. PhD students and research Master Degree students may be able to negotiate an alternative starting date with their study supervisors.
To begin the application process, you must first refer to the Australian Department of Home Affairs website under STUDENT for the requirements for a student visa.
Typically, you will need:
- results for the English as a Second Language certification
- evidence of sufficient funds enough to cover your tuition, living and travel expenses. For living expenses, a sum of AU$20,290* (RM60150) at least must be stated. Alternately, your parents must provide proof of earning an annual sum of at least AU$60,000* (RM177870)
- medical examination and/or radiology with an approved doctor
- Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)