fees & costs
Before deciding to study in Australia, you need to be confident that you can cover the costs of your tuition fees, as well as living expenses. Make sure you are aware of all the possible costs of studying in Australia so that you can budget effectively.
Here is a guideline of typical fees in Australia (all in AUS$ per year):
- Foundation studies - $9,000 to 14,000
- Bachelor degrees - $14,000 to 35,000
- Postgraduate diplomas - $15,000 to 36,000
- Doctoral degrees - $15,000 to 36,000
- Vocational Education and Training (VET) Certificates I-IV, Diploma and Advanced Diploma - $5,000 to 32,000
Please note that this is a guideline only. Actual fees may vary.
Financial help and scholarships
There are a number of opportunities for financial help in Australia. Scholarships are offered by institutions, the Australian government and various organisations. They may offer to pay all or part of your tuition fees, and can cover specific topic areas or levels of study. The Australian government doesn't offer scholarships to those studying English language courses, however some institutions do.
The Study in Australia website has a useful scholarships database. It also has details of the Australian Awards programme, which offers scholarships to high achieving or skilled students from various countries. The Australian Government website has a really comprehensive list of links for international students looking to fund their studies.
As well as scholarships for academic attainment, Australia is committed to promoting higher education for students from developing countries. These scholarships are given on the understanding that, on completing your studies, you will return to your country for at least two years and use your new skills to improve the development of your country. For more information see Scholarships4Development.
However, be aware that this is an indicative figure only and your living costs may be higher or lower, depending on your location, lifestyle and hobbies. Your living expenses are likely to include rent (see our Accommodation page for average costs), bills, clothing, food, toiletries, books and course materials, travel and socialising.
Here are some average costs (in AUS$) of everyday goods to give you an idea of how much your living expenses might be:
TravelTravel costs will depend how, and how much, you travel, but average around $15-20 per week if using public transport. As an example, a single bus fare is around $2-3.
Food and householdAn average food bill per week should be between $80-150, depending on your tastes. Basic average costs are approximately:
- A loaf of bread - $3
- Milk (2 litres) - $2-3
- Shampoo - $2.50-4.50
- Chicken (600g) - $7-8
- A takeaway meal - $6-10
- Electricity and gas bills, depending on usage, should be around $15-25 per week, combined
- Telephone (not mobile/cell phone) - around $10-15
- Meal at a mid-priced restaurant - around $15-30
- A cinema ticket - around $17
- A pint of beer in a pub - around $4
Students are advised to open a student checking account for the duration of their studies in Australia. The Australian banking system is regarded internationally as a safe and stable system and there is a good choice of banks, building societies and credit unions for students to choose from.
Choosing a bankMake sure you research the different banking options available to you. Ask the welfare officer at your institution for recommendations and also speak to friends to find out about their experiences with different banks. Also remember to shop around, as different banks offer different incentives for opening accounts.
It is a good idea to choose a bank with a branch close to where you live and find out things like whether you can withdraw cash from other banks' ATMs, and whether you will have access to an overdraft. Many banks will offer an account specifically for international students.
Opening an accountSome banks allow international students to open accounts before arriving in Australia, enabling you to transfer funds prior to departure. If not, students are advised to open an account within six weeks of arriving in Australia.
If you open a bank account within six weeks of arriving in Australia, you can use your passport as proof of identity and will need to have a local address. However, if you open an account after six weeks you may need to provide further identification, such as a birth certificate or a driving licence.