While the majority of international students in Australia pay full fees for their studies, there are a number of scholarships available to assist students with the cost of their education. It is definitely worth researching these opportunities, as they may provide considerable help funding your studies in Australia.
Scholarships may cover the full cost or a portion of your tuition fees or cover other costs such as accommodation or living expenses. While it is a good idea to apply for scholarships, you should not rest all your hopes on receiving a scholarship, keeping in mind that most international student scholarships are based on academic merit and are very competitive.
Do your research
- Make a list of all possible scholarship providers (see the list below), and be sure to contact them or view their websites for further information. The most common scholarship providers are education institutions, government departments and private or not-for-profit organisations (both in Australia and your home country).
- The earlier you begin researching your scholarship opportunities, the more prepared you will be. Make a list of all scholarships you are eligible for, the costs they cover, application requirements and application deadlines. It is good to be aware of application dates in advance, as closing dates vary considerably.
- Check the criteria for each scholarship thoroughly before you apply. Some scholarships are only available to international students from certain countries, while others may be related to a specific course, field of study or level of study (research higher degree, for example). Many scholarships also have strict academic requirements, and some are only available to international students who completed Years 11 and 12 of secondary school in Australia.
- Your next step is to obtain and fill out any applications from the provider. To make the application process as easy as possible, ensure that you have copies of academic transcripts and any other supporting documentation required (in English). Note that some scholarships do not require an application — you will be automatically considered when you apply for your degree on the basis of your previous academic results.
- Ask someone who is proficient in English to check over your application to ensure it is error-free and grammatically correct, particularly if English is not your first language. This will ensure you make a good impression on the scholarships committee.
- Apply for as many scholarships as you can before you commence study, and be sure to reapply in future years if you miss out or if the scholarship you receive does not cover the full duration of your course. Some scholarships are restricted to students already studying at the institution, including travel scholarships, which will assist you if you wish to complete an exchange program overseas.
- The Australian Government— The Australian Government offers an extensive range of scholarships for international students under the Australia Awards scheme for both achievement and development, including the Endeavour Awards, the Australian Leadership Awards and Australian Development Scholarships.
- Government departments in your home country— You can contact your home country’s consulate in Australia or the relevant authorities within your home country.
- Your Australian education institution — Look through your Australian institution’s website for institution-wide and faculty-specific international student scholarships. Most websites have a scholarships database that allows you to input your details. If you require assistance, contact the international student administration team.
- Your education institution in your home country— Your education institution may offer scholarships and bursaries, especially if you are a current student considering exchange or study abroad in Australia.
- Corporations and not-for-profit organisations— This includes international organisations, as well as relevant organisations in your home country and Australia such as charities and industry bodies.