The Australian system offers the international student many options to pursue, from ESL programs to graduate degree programs. Australia also has very strong vocational and technical programs through the Technical and Further Education (TAFE) system. Here is a list of the most popular types of programs offered
ESL - English as a Second Language
Almost 20% of all international students who come to Australia enroll in an intensive ESL program (known in Australia as ELICOS) to improve their English. This number increases as students choose the multicultural atmosphere of Australia to learn English.
There are hundreds of institutions that currently offer English language programs and they vary by school. Programs cater to all levels, from beginner to advanced, and there are normally no admission requirements. Students will also take an ESL program as a foundation for their undergraduate studies in Australia.
Normally students take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) to indicate their level of understanding of English. In Australia, the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)is preferred by many institutions.
The ESLdirectory.com has an online database of ESL schools - please visit to find a school that's right for you!
Undergraduate / Graduate Degrees
There are 39 registered universities in Australia offering a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs. These programs fall under several categories:
VET - Vocational Education and Training
Australia's VET system, called TAFE (Techical and Further Education) is a network of institutions that offer programs that are both practical and career-orientated. These programs enable students to begin their career path with study and work all rolled into one program. The main benefit to employers of VET graduates is that they know the individual has practical, work place experience as well as the theoretical background. International students sometimes use TAFE/VET programs to enter Australia and increase their chances of becoming permanent residents.
Studying Abroad can be an excellent way to learn and experience a new culture and education system, without fully enrolling for a full degree. Through special arrangements, you could spend a semester or full year at an institution in replace for time at your school in your home country.
To learn more about Study Abroad opportunities, please check with your institution you are currently attending, or visit our dedicated Study Abroad section, where you can search for Study Abroad programs in Australia.
There are many colleges in Australia that offer diplomas, or certificates in most every area of study. These private/specialized colleges vary in price depending on the school but they all basically offer program that can range from 3 months to 3 year. Credits from these courses may be able to be transferred to universities, but this it dependent on the college and its relationship with Australian Universities.