The Australia Higher Education System Explained

July 9, 2021

studying in australia

Australia is the world’s sixth-largest country, with the world’s 12th largest economy. It consists of the Australian Continent’s mainland, Tasmania, and various smaller islands. Did you know? Canberra is Australia’s largest city. Australia has grown to be one of the world’s largest and most prosperous democracies, endowed with natural wonders and a diverse cultural blend. Education in Australia is decentralized, with the states and territories largely responsible for funding and regulating public and private schools. Primary education (primary schools), secondary education (high schools), and tertiary education (universities, Technical and Further Education institutions – TAFE, and (Vocation Education and Training – VET providers) are the three tiers of education in Australia. Here is everything you need to know about studying in Australia.

Studying in Australia: Higher Education System

Studying in Australia usually entails attending a university or a technical college. It is dependent on several educational providers, such as colleges as well as other institutes. Higher education necessitates years of diligent research. Higher education not only gives you an accepted education but also trains you for potential career opportunities.

Australia is one of the most famous higher education destinations that has a diverse range of higher education programs.

Undergraduate Courses

The Australian Government has approved a national collection of credentials in Australia. This ensures that each certification and the standard of education it reflects is recognized on a national and foreign level. Most higher education establishments have the following forms of undergraduate qualifications:

  • Bachelors: Bachelors degrees provide a minimum of three years of full-time training to include initial guidance for vocational professions and postgraduate study (some colleges offer integrated courses, which enables students to complete a three-year degree in two years). 

  • Honors: Honors may entail an extra year of study (usually research-based) after a three-year degree or may be granted for academic excellence in four-year degrees or higher.

Postgraduate Courses

Master’s Degree: A master’s degree demonstrates mastery or a high-level description of a particular field of research or area of clinical experience. Typically, studntes need two years of research after a bachelor’s degree. The master’s degree can be obtained in one of three ways:

  • Coursework masters: A blend of coursework, project work, and science. Entry usually necessitates the achievement of a bachelor’s degree, a bachelor’s degree with honours, or a graduate certificate.

  • Research Masters: A science master’s degree comprises two research and a substantial paper, which is often evaluated externally. A bachelor’s degree (honours) or master’s preliminary year, a study-based academic certificate, or comparable research experience are usually needed for admission.

  • Professional Masters: Professional master’s degrees can include a work-based project. A specific certification and relevant experience, or comprehensive relevant professional experience, are needed for entry.

Doctorate: Recognises significant initial exposure to a particular area in the context of new information or adaptation, implementation, and understanding of established knowledge. The doctoral degree can be awarded in one of two ways:

  • Research Doctorate: A scientific doctorate is mostly supervised research. A study or part-research master’s degree or a bachelor’s degree are needed for admission (honours).

  • Professional Doctorate: A professional doctorate is made up of a variety of coursework and study. Entry usually necessitates a master’s degree in science and coursework or a bachelor’s degree (honours). Furthermore, prior to or during the course, significant clinical practise experience is expected.
studying in australia

Vocational Education & Training

Governments and businesses work together to provide vocational education and training. VET certificates are offered by both government and private organizations, known as Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutions. VET qualifications will help you get into employment or university. There are several technical training courses available in fields such as IT, business management, art and media, tourism and hospitality, transportation and logistics, and building, to name a few.

Studying in Australia: Term Structure

The Australian educational year is divided into two sessions for universities. The school year starts at the end of February/beginning of March with the Fall session and continues until the mid-term break in April. This will last anywhere from only a few days to two weeks. Mid-year tests are held for a month in June/July. Session 2 starts in July/August and concludes in September/October with a mid-term pause. The months of November and December are occupied by end-of-year tests and the Christmas holiday.

Admission Process

The majority of Australian colleges accept online applications. To submit, you will have to visit the college’s website. In certain instances, you would be required to create an account on the official site in order to include basic details, upload scanned copies of your transcripts, and submit application fees. This account will keep you updated on the application stage and its progress.

Entry Requirements

Getting into higher education programs in Australia can get very competitive. Applicants must fulfill high-level English language specifications in addition to academic requirements defined for each certification level. Certain higher education classes include advanced expertise of specific topics, job experience, or the satisfactory completion of an application, resume, examination, or interview. 

Studying in Australia: Grading System

It is important to understand that each university, institute, or state in Australia may have a different grading system. As a result, it is often advisable to know about the grading systems used for a particular educational institute or university.

GradeQualificationPercentage %GPA Scale
HDHigh Distinction83-1007


Australia has 43 universities, 40 of which are public, two of which are national, and one of which is private. It is an ideal country for obtaining a highly regarded education. Australia’s higher education and skills programs have a solid reputation for quality and excellence. This global recognition is reflected in the vast number of foreign students who choose to undertake higher education in Australia. An Australian certification is highly valued all over the world. With a robust economic framework and low unemployment levels, Australia provides excellent job opportunities even for graduate students as well.

With her expertise in the study abroad space, Shreya has worked closely with EdTech leaders like Unacademy, upGrad, Shiksha, and CollegeDunia. She knows her way around words, both written and spoken, which is also her strongest suit. A passionate learner and a mentor, she is often found passing her knowledge to young minds.
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