I applied for Swinburne University relatively late because I had problems with student loans. That’s why my application came in shortly before the deadline and I didn’t know whether I could pay the tuition fees. But instead of a harsh answer like “This is not our problem”, MicroEDU and the Swinburne team really helped me! So an extension of one month was agreed and I only had to make a small deposit of $ 500 until I had solved my student loan problem. So I was pleased to see that Australian universities are really service companies and students are customers. If I had been on my own, I would probably have given up long ago.
I applied for Swinburne University for one reason in particular: Swinburne starts very late by Australian standards (early August or March) and does not mean that you lose an additional semester due to overlapping! That is the key advantage of the Swinburne. But there is also enough time for traveling afterwards, as the semester ends at the end of November / June and you then have at least 3 months to travel until the next semester in Germany starts again. Visit educationvv.com to get information about University of California Davis student exchange program.
The course itself took some getting used to for me, as there are differences to the German system. The courses are easier than comparable courses in Germany, but it is a lot more work. As a rule, you have to write an intermediate exam, a presentation, a term paper and a final exam for an accounting certificate. This means constant learning as there is also homework that is controlled. In no case should you be afraid or shy about your knowledge of English! 60% of the students at Swinburne are foreigners and the professors are extremely patient, especially when it comes to language problems. Furthermore, the university offers free English courses, whereby these contain more of the basics. The helpfulness of the professors is also unusual. Professors have no secretaries, the doors are always open and emails are usually replied to on the same day. So I wanted to get a signature from a professor to be able to attend his course, but was advised for 30 minutes and in the end had a completely new schedule.
One should be very careful when choosing a course. You only have time to add courses in the first week. You should therefore specify 5-6 courses when you apply, because courses can be handed in for a full month. I was also surprised that the Bachelor and Master courses are identical. I can now only say that for the heading courses (HBC230 and the master HBC615). Exams, scripts, presentations were exactly the same, only the times were different.
The support at the university is also extremely positive. If there were a few drinking games and a few information events at my German university, I was offered a week-long program. Excursions were organized or an Australian student was given to sponsor the nightlife. Even after the orientation week, the university offered trips every 3 weeks, such as rafting or a visit to the zoo, in order to establish contacts between the students.
Finding good accommodation is difficult for Swinburne University students. Melbourne has 6 major universities and Swinburne is the last to start, which is why most of the good accommodations were already taken by the time I arrived. Looking for a room in a shared apartment in advance is practically impossible, but also not advisable. The university does offer rooms, but these cost around $ 220 per week (normal is more than AUD 150 per week) and you have to register for these rooms early. It is better to live a little longer in a hostel so as not to hectically take the first flat share, because you usually conclude contracts for 6 months.
Alternatively, you can also go to a host family. These cost around AUD 240 per week, but mostly include breakfast and dinner. But you shouldn’t forget that you live with a family and that you have to follow certain rules accordingly.
Before deciding to do a semester abroad in Australia, one should be aware of the costs. For 6 months living in Melbourne and all other costs such as tuition, flight, visa, etc. you have to plan about 10,000 euros. This calculation does not include travel, which is mandatory for Australia. The Bafög covers most of the costs, with the maximum Bafög a total of almost 9,000 euros, but it will not work without your own funds. But you can also go to work in Melbourne. The student visa allows you to work on the side and if you choose the course times skilfully (each lecture is usually held twice a week) you can always have 1 or even 2 days off. Here, too, you shouldn’t be put off by language problems, because there are, for example, countless fast food restaurants that are looking for kitchen help.
I can only advise everyone to go to Australia if they have the chance. A semester abroad means a lot of work, but you will never regret it. . .