Australia: No experience like it before. Past Review

By (Sport and Fitness Administration/Management., Ithaca College) for

University of Melbourne: Melbourne - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Yes. It is hard to explain how fulfilling this experience is until you go out there and do it yourself. I became independent and look at things a little different now. I am definitely interested in learning about different cultures more than I was before and would love to keep traveling.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The grading system is very different and it was hard to gage how it is going to transfer. THe teaching method is different because of the huge lectures at the University of Melbourne but it gives students a new perspective. Students must be independent and have to motivate themselves to do their work. Taking elective courses was a smart choice so the workload wasn't as stressful.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The IES website was simple to follow but I would suggest having email notifications so that people don't have to keep checking it while they are applying. The people in the program were all very helpful. The IES program advisors were always available to talk and helped me get involved with a lot of clubs on campus. Whenever I emailed anyone from the program, they would get back to me very quickly whether I called or emailed them.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I needed to just bring adapters and I suggest buying cheap hairdryers/straighteners if you use them. You don't want to damage any expensive electronics either.

* Food:

I lived on campus but there were endless amount options available on campus for people to eat. It was a lot cheaper to eat on campus than going out somewhere else to eat.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The tasmania trip with the IES abroad was phenomenal. We did so much in the five days we spent there. Holding a koala in Cairns was a neat experience as well. The one thing I will always remember though, is scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Melbourne was pretty safe. It gets crowded especially at night but it tends to have a good reputation. I wouldn't suggest going on the trains/trams alone at night but I wouldn't suggest doing that in any city anyway.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 200-300 not including trips. A week trip can cost between 500-2000 depending on how far and where you decide to stay.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Australia was very experience when I went. The plane flights are not too expensive but I suggest eating at home and cooking a lot more than eating out.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
  • Hostel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • I liked the communication. Australia is so far away so it was nice to have people you could turn to if anything was wrong or I just wanted to talk to someone.
* What could be improved?
  • The orientation the first day we arrived was a little hard because of the jetlag. It is hard to adjust but maybe taking one day before going anywhere just to unpack would have been nice.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I would suggest living with an Australia roommate is you get the chance. I learned so much about the city, country and people just from living with her. You should also get involved in clubs and activities on campus. That is how I met people from all over the world and traveled with them around Australia. People interested in Biology and other sciences are usually encouraged to go but anyone who has wanted to go to Australia, should. I didn't take any core classes for my major but I wanted to go and experience everything.