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Why Study Online With An Australian University?

Online study at Australian universitiesAustralian universities have a long history of offering education through distance learning. They have been using technology to educate students since the invention of the radio, and are now at the cutting edge of online education provision. Because of their investment in technology, many Australian universities are proud of the tech support that they offer their online students. Another key element of studying online at an Australian university is that some of them offer start dates throughout the year for their online courses, which means they are not as tied to the academic calendar as their on-campus counterparts. In this article we're going to take a look at what's on offer for online postgraduate study at Australian universities and what questions you should ask if you are considering an Australian university as your online learning provider.

Interesting subject areas

A huge range of interesting subjects are available for online postgraduate study in Australia. For example, Deakin University has over 40 years experience in offering online postgraduate study and they offer a wide selection of online postgraduate courses including Artificial Intelligence, Public Health, Sports Science, Financial Planning, Health Economics, and Teaching all at the masters level. The University of South Australia offers online programs in Teaching, MBA, and Nursing. RMIT Online has a base in Australia and offers postgraduate courses in topics such as Marketing and Design.


How long are online postgraduate courses in Australia?

The duration of an online postgraduate program taught out of an Australian university will depend on the course, but for those who opt for part-time study the length of time will be between two and four years. Some online postgraduate courses – such as the MBA at the University of South Australia – takes two years of studying even when choosing the full-time option. Then, with flexible learning courses, part-time studies can take up to five or six years. Other courses taught online at Australian universities – such as Graduate Certificates – only last a few months, again the duration will depend on whether you are studying full or part time. 

What are the tuition fees?

The cost of online postgraduate courses at Australian universities varies from university to university and also between domestic and international students. For example, the tuition fees at Charles Stuart University for an online Masters in Sustainable Agriculture are $27,584 for domestic students (although many domestic students do not pay this much due to government funding) and $31,040 for international students. Meanwhile, the costs of the online Masters of Laws at the University of New England is quite similar for both domestic and international students, with tuition fees being $52,368 for domestic students and $56,432 for international students. It’s worth noting that in Australia many domestic students do not pay the full tuition fees, as there are grants from the Australian Government as well as discounts from universities.

Do online courses have on-campus sessions?

Some online postgraduate courses at universities in Australia also include on-campus sessions, like some of those offered at the University of South Australia which has small campus facilities located all over South Australia to provide on-campus sessions. However, due to the long tradition of offering distance learning courses, many online postgraduate courses in Australia are taught entirely online, including any assessment.

What are the funding options?

For Australian students, there are Government-backed financing schemes to pay for postgraduate education or towards part of the tuition fees. For international students, there is little available from the Australian Government to fund online postgraduate studies in Australia from abroad, but international students should check with their own government as they might offer something similar. Many universities in Australia offer alumni a 10% tuition fee discount or scholarship. Other funding options include private loans and savings.

How do I search for online postgraduate courses in Australia?

There are a few ways to find out about your options for online postgraduate programs in Australia. First, go through industry or career-related media to see what courses are recommended by those already working in the area you’re interested in or speak to any contacts you might have. Another good ideas is to search through rankings of universities and courses to find what other people think of courses available and how well regarded they are. In Australia there is a not-for-profit organisation, known as Open Universities Australia, this is a combination of different universities who have partnered together to showcase their online educational offerings in one place, so take a look and see what’s on offer.

Popular online postgraduate universities in Australia

Here are the top 10 universities in Australia by the total number of online postgraduate students*.

Online PG programs in Australia
*Online student figures in 2017  Source


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