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Undergraduate Programs

We do not as a rule recommend to students that they come to Australia to do a full 3- to 6-year undergraduate degree program here, especially if they are from Latin America or Europe. Not that there is something wrong with Australian undergraduate education, but it is often more effective, and certainly more economical, to obtain a first degree in your home country and then enhance it by gaining a postgraduate qualification in an English-speaking country. The exception is, of course, when you want to get a degree which is not available in your home country, for example a Bachelor Degree in Aquaculture, Bio-Technology, Eco-Tourism, Economic Geology, International Hotel Management, Maritime Engineering, Multimedia, Mineral Processing or Occupational Therapy.

However, if you have started undergraduate studies in your home country and have successfully completed the first 2 or 3 years, what may be attractive to you is the possibility of coming to Australia for your final undergraduate year/s. Under this scenario you would be able to get status (transfer of credit) for the years you have completed at home and gain an Australian first degree.

Advantages of completing your final year/s in Australia

  • a degree from an English-speaking country such as Australia will make you more competitive in the job market, because you will have excellent English, you will have international and intercultural experience and you will have broadened your knowledge from an international perspective.
  • if you go on to a postgraduate program in Australia after you have finished your first degree, you are likely to find that you will have completed a first degree PLUS a postgraduate qualification in the same time it takes you to gain just a first degree in your home country.
  • certain undergraduate courses in certain universities (for example the Engineering and Information Technology programs at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS)) expect or allow you to undertake work experience as part of your studies. If you perform well, you could be offered paid part-time employment while you are continuing your studies. (In Australia a Student Visa with Permission to Work allows you to work up to 20 hours a week).
  • the total cost of your studies in Australia is likely to be less than the cost of a similar program in the US or the UK, and it it is also often easier, and quicker, to gain a place in an Australian university than it is to gain a place elsewhere, in particular in the US.
  • it is quite likely that at the end of your course you will be eligible to apply for Permanent Residence in Australia without having to return to your home country.


There are two main pre-requisites for entry to an undergraduate study program at an Australian university:

  1. you must have completed your secondary education, and
  2. you must provide evidence that your English Proficiency Level is at least equivalent to IELTS level 6, 6.5 or 7, depending on the program and/or the university.

All Australian universities require international students to have a minimum level of English language proficiency, usually equivalent to Level 6 to 6.5 on the IELTS with a minimum of 6 in Reading and Writing. While some universities accept results from other tests, such as the TOEFL for example, many international students need to have an IELTS score in order to obtain a Student Visa (this is a requirement set by the Australian Department of Immigration).

You are required to present official evidence of your level of English in order to be accepted. The common experience is that IELTS level 6 (or equivalent) is an absolute minimum and many students coming in with this proficiency level find that their lack of adequate English makes them underperform. For this reason a large number of universities have increased the required English level to IELTS 6.5. If you have not reached an appropriate level of English and would like to study English in Australia prior to entering a university program, AMES can provide an assessment of your English level together with an estimate of the number of weeks you would need to study English at an English Australia centre in order to achieve the level required for university entry and academic success.

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