Popular Courses in Australia for International Students

May 15, 2019

For international students wishing to go abroad to pursue higher studies, Australia has always been one of the top destinations of choice, whether it is because of the exquisite natural environment, universally recognized qualifications, or because of the wide range of cultural experiences available over there. Most students decide on one course over others based on their finances, part-time and future full-time job prospects (both in Australia and in their home country) and whether the degree is recognized worldwide or not. Below are some of the courses in Australia that are most in demand (at present) amongst international students:

1. Cyber Security:

Cyber Security as a course prepares students with the skills and knowledge necessary to deal with a world which is methodically connected and teaches the importance of security of information that is crucial to the survival of any organisation. A student with a degree in Cyber Security has higher employability after completing the course. Graduates would have possible future career outcomes as analysts, cryptographers, consultants, technical advisors, technical project managers, Cyber Security coordinators and so on. Since Cyber Security is gaining massive importance in the global technological arena, studying in this course will open up dozens of networking opportunities with professionals working in companies like Intel, IBM, Google—both in Australia, and around the world.

2. IT (Bachelors)

Other than studying cloud computing or Cyber Security, many students opt to go the more general route and study about Information Technology, or IT for short.

It is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. It is an incredibly diverse, fast-paced industry, which is constantly changing and evolving. One of the major reasons to study information technology is the increase in job opportunities, with the Australian Department of Employment predicting that the demand for IT professionals will increase by 12.8% in 2018. The largest growth can be seen in Australia’s state capital cities, such as Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. Melbourne is Australia’s technology hub and home to more than half of the country’s top 20 tech companies, while the state of Victoria has over 8,000 IT businesses based there, including IBM, Microsoft, Deloitte, PwC and Intel. After completing an undergraduate degree in IT, students can further specialize in courses like AI or Cyber Security, depending on their area of interest; or on whichever option has more/ better future job prospects.

3. Business Analytics

Most of the competencies required in the modern world often combine multiple skill sets. This is where courses on business analytics come into play. Due to the rapid emergence of IT businesses and the development of ICT, many organizations [particularly those focusing upon digital marketing/ needing to measure growth against investment over a period of time]. In the aforementioned scenarios, a degree in business analytics can do wonders for the graduate’s career. Business Analytics (BA) refers to the use of technology in order to analyze, present and support decision-making from collective data held in organizational settings. It looks at the way businesses structure the arrangement of their information, and the ways in which people and organizations use technology to improve their processes and workflows, and to innovate their products or services. This course is becoming increasingly crucial in the business world as it helps organizations manage vast amounts of business data to make critical business decisions. After graduating with this degree, students can even go for an MBA in order to prepare themselves for future managerial positions; eventually returning to their home country to work for various public/private sector organizations.

4. Accountancy

Accountancy courses have always been an integral part of the skilled occupations list in Australia. Since Australian industries need management accountants, taxation accountants and general accountants, accountancy is considered to be one of the most popular courses in Australia amongst international students. Corporate treasurer and external auditor are just two of the roles that accountancy students can choose to pursue after they are done with their graduation. Accountancy courses are often accredited by the CPA.

5. Social Work

Courses in social work are some of the most widely pursued emerging courses preferred by international students in Australia. Occupations under this course are listed within the Skilled Occupation List. The courses student often look for are Psychology, Psychiatry, Health and Welfare Services, Community Service, Social Work and Social Studies, etc. The courses are accredited by the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW). Students choosing social work courses can choose to work in the public or private sector, in NGOs, INGOs, government or autonomous organizations—as they see fit.

6. Engineering (Civil, Electrical)

For international students, especially Bangladeshis, engineering is one of the top course choices. Civil and electrical engineering are favored over most other branches since these require the greatest number of skilled workers on a regular basis. There are more hands-on Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses on offer than in Bangladesh, which will qualify you for engineering associate or engineering technologist positions and can act as a pathway into university. If you’re already working as an engineer, Australian institutions also offer a range of postgraduate programs in engineering (such as the Master of Business Administration specializing in engineering), which will enable you to take the next step in your career.

Australia is currently experiencing a widespread shortage of engineers, especially in states that are experiencing the highest growth in mining and resources — Western Australia and Queensland. This high demand for graduates means that international students studying engineering have strong prospects of gaining employment in Australia; should they choose to do so. International graduates are vital to meeting Australia’s engineering skills shortage, with skilled migrant engineers accounting for more than half of the supply of newly qualified engineers in the Australian workforce, according to ANET figures. Engineering graduates working in Australia can also expect to earn high salaries, recent graduates earning up to $60, 705 on average (The Good Universities Guide 2013).

Work experience is another vital part of engineering courses in Australia, which ensures that graduates have the practical experience and skills required by employers in the workforce. This may be completed through a ‘co-op’ course that involves a work placement at an Australian company or through other compulsory and voluntary internships.

As an international student going to Australia, you should make a well-informed decision based upon your existing skill set/ expertise (in terms of high school/ undergraduate education/ current job), and best future job prospects when you return to your home country.

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