At the beginning I can say in advance: AUSTRALIA IS THE PLACE TO BE! I had really thought about it a lot, but I’m really more than happy with my decision to go to Melbourne. Because although you would think that Australians would be just like the English, they are really different! In addition, Australia is such a multi-cultural country that you have to deal with people from all over the world! But here first everything in chronological order:
Sabine and Tanja were always at my side with words and deeds and really helped me with all the questions I had. The application process is actually quite simple. All you have to do is fill out a few forms, prove a certain level of English and prove your previous achievements at the university. No letters of motivation, nothing. However, in Australia there are tuition fees that have to be paid. For me it was around € 6,500 at the time. If you apply for a Auslandsbafög (and almost everyone gets that), you get € 4,600 of the fees paid back.
The visa is applied for online and I have given a commitment within a few hours, so I had enough time to look forward to the great journey!
At that time I booked my flight tickets through STA-Travel, as they also have good offers for students (more flexible fork flights, rebooking, etc. ). An international health insurance I have completed over the ADAC (and thankfully not in use), but you must also conclude about the university health insurance, since the duty in Australia and accumulates along with the tuition fees. However, since this does not include everything (medical interventions on the teeth, for example, are excluded), further insurance is definitely recommended.
You can apply in advance for a room in the university’s dormitory, which I did at the time. Since I was probably a little later, I didn’t get any more space. But I personally recommend moving into a shared apartment. When I was there, I quickly found an apartment in Hawthorn (10 minutes’ walk from campus) via flatmate. com. au and was able to get to know Australian culture better – and it was cheaper too;-). But you should be prepared for significantly higher costs than in Germany. A room in a shared apartment in Hawthorn costs around € 150 a week on average, and groceries and alcohol in particular are more expensive in Australia. But you get used to it.
Something special about Melbourne: I arrived in July with 8 degrees and rain, as it was winter in Melbourne at the time, but Melbourne is also the “city of the four seasons in one day”. So really pack EVERYTHING! I had temperatures of 8 to 32 degrees in my time from July to November.
The university is quite modern. Elevators or escalators are used to go up to the eighth floor, and the rooms themselves are well equipped. The campus is large, but manageable. It has many cafes and inexpensive food options for breaks as well as the train station and the Glenferrie Road, which is very lively and offers shopping, is just a two minute walk away. The need to drive to the CBD (Central Business District, so to speak the city center) is therefore rather rare.
There are constant events on campus and you either get little things in bags or you can get a sausage for a dollar and donate it to a good cause or there are small festivals. Other activities such as Movie Nights or Trivial Nights also take place regularly. Often there were also bands that performed or played against each other in a contest.
Since my home university stipulated that I should come back with 30 ECTS points, I had to take 4 courses, which was actually rather seldom the case. You choose the courses when you apply, but you can reorient yourself in the first two weeks that you are at the university and, if necessary, change courses without any problems if there are still places available. In general, the courses are offered several times a week, so that you can choose the days or times (mornings / evenings). This is probably due to the fact that many Australians also work on their Masters degree on the side. Most of the time, they only chose 2 courses per semester. Therefore we had significantly more “foreigners” in our courses. Many of them then stay there for two years for the complete master’s degree.
The courses I took were:
- Creativity & Innovation (recommended for everyone who is primarily concerned with design thinking and who wants to learn it using an independently developed idea)
- Branding & Creative Innovation (focus was more on branding, many case studies and presentations)
- Integrated Marketing Communications, Promotions & Advertising (This course was partly online and partly in the classroom). We had weekly topics that we worked out ourselves on the blackboard (“intranet”) of the university and then exchanged them with other fellow students on a platform. We also had Zoos Victoria (the 3 zoos in Melbourne and the surrounding area) as a customer, for whom we should then develop a marketing strategy, including a media plan.
- Public Relations & New Media (There was no compulsory attendance here. So it was more of a self-study and if you had questions you could come to the lectures, in which questions were then answered and everything was summarized again. )
There were no exams in any of the courses, only assignments and presentations. That was pretty exhausting during the semester, but you were ready at the beginning of November and could use the time that others needed to crap for exams to travel.
TRAVEL / LIFESTYLE
Melbourne consists of many small districts, each with a different charm. In the center, i. e. the CBD, you have everything and you can shop there very well, you have chains like H&M, Zara or even smaller Australian boutiques that offer really unusual things. Prices for this are actually like here when you convert it.
You can party in the CBD as well as in bars & clubs on Chapel Street and in Fitzroy. Sometimes you have to pay entry for the clubs (AUD20), but you can also get to many bars that invite you to party and take no entry. By the way, alcohol in public is strictly forbidden.
Further outside Melbourne you can take tours (which are also organized by the university and are quite affordable) to Philipp Island to spot the penguins at dusk, take great photos on Brighton Beach or drive the Great Ocean Road with the 12 apostles! I also took the tour to the Peninsula Hot Springs and took my first selfie with a kangaroo in the Healsville Sanctuary!
If you have time to travel (which I really, really recommend) – apart from a mid-term break of one week – you can fly back and forth between the states cheaply. My absolute highlights were the west coast (from Perth to Broome is a must, but make sure that it is not the rainy season), Tasmania (great for hiking, for wine tasting, cheese tasting, berry tasting, so great for gourmets . . !), Uluru im Core of the country, and of course Queensland, with Noosa, Whitsunday Islands, Fraser Island & Port Douglas (Great Barrier Reef Tour) being my absolute highlights!
I hope that you have now got a better picture and I wish you a lot of fun on this adventure trip!
To this day, I have not regretted my decision to join MicroEDU and I am very satisfied with my semester abroad. Australia is a great country with super nice people and very varied and beautiful nature. Melbourne as a city is simply amazing because the possibilities are virtually endless and Melbourne has been voted the “Most liveable city of the world” many times.
My application process was time-consuming, but thanks to the great support from the MicroEDU consultants and the good help in the form of forms and step-by-step instructions, it was still easy. You have to be careful when choosing the right forms, as it can easily happen that you fill out one or two too many (looking for the necessary information can sometimes take a long time and is then unnecessary). So my tip is to call your MicroEDU advisor quickly. When I had my application together, I bagged everything and sent it to MicroEDU, and a few weeks later I had feedback from Swinburne.
The course choice
Choosing a course was a bit more difficult in my case, but this had to do with the progress of my studies. Otherwise, the course description on the Swinburne homepage is well described and you can find your way around (if you understand the course selection page on the homepage).
To come to Australia I decided to contact STA Travel. This is a travel agency that specializes in backpacker trips and longer stays. The staff was always very friendly, helpful and a great advantage is that you have a contact person during your entire trip.
I chose a room in the Campus Residences advertised and get an acceptance there. You shouldn’t wait too long for this, as the waiting lists at the beginning of the semester can be full. I was in a three-person flat share, but in retrospect I would have preferred to share a flat with four people, because that way you just get to know more people. Regarding the residences, the rents are very expensive compared to Germany (approx. $ 280 / week). There is a WLAN there which is not free and if you buy a WLAN pass it is quite expensive and has a data limit. A few colleagues have decided to share a pass through a router they bought themselves (illegal according to the WLAN operators). I myself have decided to use a prepaid mobile phone SIM (Octopus) with more data volume. When I needed WiFi, I went to the library. the campus is super nice. You can get to the CBD (city center) quickly with the metro, so I’ve never regretted the decision. This was also due to the many opportunities on campus next to the university. I trained in an aikido club twice a week, but there were many other sports clubs. I also thought it was a good idea to join the SSA ($ 20 / semester) because they hosted many events, there was often free food and you could copy and print for free. Another benefit of living on campus was that we often had small parties in the common areas, which were furnished with sofas, beanbags, pool and table tennis tables.
I have in the Master’s program Electrical Engineering student at Swinburne University of Technology and have two technical subjects and a professional foreign trade occupies (occupy one has at least three subjects in order to get a student visa). Both technical subjects were less demanding than what I knew from Germany, but they were still good. The non-technical subject I attended was very interesting and very different from what I was used to in Germany.
Melbourne and Australia
In addition to university life and all the activities on campus, there is a lot to discover and do in Melbourne. A must-do is the free walking tour that starts every Sunday from the State Library. Rooftop bars are also a must-do, whether in Fitzroy or in the CBD. An eye should always be kept for food festivals, music festivals, comedy festivals or other art festivals. There is a lot to discover. Other tips include the Victoria Night Market, Brighton and St Kilda Beach (penguins watch), the Eureka Skytower (tallest building in the southern hemisphere) and the Shrine of Remembrance (photo). Apart from Melbourne, there is of course a lot to travel in the state of Victoria, which is best done with a rental car. With a German driver’s license it is also not a problem to rent a car (I never needed a translation or an international driver’s license). Billiger-mietwagend. de is a good place to go to find rental cars. Renting a car is much cheaper from the age of 25. The most important things to drive a car in Australia are: Driving LEFT and the Australian speeding penalties are very sensitive (starting at over $ 200 for 6 km / h too fast).
Apart from the fines (which luckily I never got myself) Melbourne and Australia are just great and it was definitely worth the money to invest and it was really made a lot easier with topschoolsintheusa.