Alongside the Universities and TAFE institutions in Australia, there are also private colleges, which are more independent and mainly focused on international students.
What can I study at a private college
Private colleges deliver tertiary programs of different levels. Some of them only offer VET courses, while others provide bachelor’s degrees and postgraduate programs, and some of them combine both. It is worth mentioning that all private colleges should be registered with CRICOS, an organisation that monitors the quality of courses delivered by private colleges. This registration is essential for the recognition of qualifications obtained from a private college in Australia.
Many private colleges are specialised in a particular field of study, such as business and management, hospitality, creative arts, etc. Some colleges also unite students around a certain religious belief, such as the Australian College of Christianity. Thus, students can study in a comfortable environment among like-minded people. In general, you can find almost every study field in private colleges, except for some regulated qualifications that can only be obtained at universities, such as medicine or architecture.
Facilities at Private Colleges
As a rule, private colleges are smaller than universities and TAFE institutions. They do not have hectares of parkland, huge libraries and sports courts at their disposal. They usually occupy a building in the downtown area. However, the small campus size has its perks. Students and teachers are more connected, so students get more personal attention and an individual approach. Staff are always very helpful and ready to support students if they face any difficulties in their learning. Giving private colleges a friendly and warm environment that helps international students adapt more easily.
Moreover, all the colleges have the necessary modern equipment for comfortable learning. Some specialised colleges even have more state-of-art conditions than universities, for example, the latest technologies for creative industries and design or modern kitchens for students in cookery courses.
The cost is perhaps the most significant advantage of private colleges for international students. Tuition fees at private colleges start from AUD $9,000 per year, which is much cheaper than at universities and TAFE institutions. Of course, the cost depends on the program and prestige of the college. Some courses may cost around AUD $14,000 – $20,000 per year, but many colleges regularly offer specials and discounts to international students, unlike universities, where it is sometimes difficult to get a scholarship.
Course Structure and Entry Requirements
Since private colleges work according to national educational standards, their courses are structured in approximately the same way as at TAFE institutions or universities. However, colleges have some flexibility in the course content and delivery mode (full-time, part-time, online or blended). Besides, colleges care a lot about their students’ employability, so some of them include internships and industry-based projects in their study programs.
As for entry requirements, they are also similar to other education providers. To enrol in a study program, a student should have a certain level of previous education. However, private colleges can be less formal than universities and TAFE institutions, which adhere to strict rules. Thus, if your education level is not high enough for entry, but you have extensive relevant work experience, you can try to enrol in a private college based on proof of your work experience and an interview.
Australian private colleges can be the perfect option for international students who want to receive high-quality and up-to-date education but do not want to pay extra money for the prestige of the education provider.
If you are interested in studying at a private college in Australia, fill out our application form, and we will help you choose the college and program of study.