The Most Cost-Effective Degrees from Best Ranked Australian Universities

As increasingly more jobs around the world are put at risk because of the rise of digital expansion, a good-quality degree is a sensible choice for those seeking long-term career security and flexibility. Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees are amongst the most desired qualifications in recruits.

If you’re considering beefing up your employment options with professional credentials, you are spoilt for choice: there are forty-three universities in Australia currently offering more than 20,000 degrees. While that makes it easy to find a competitive degree, one key question you must ask is, which ones provide the best value for money?

University rankings versus tuition fees in Australia

Tuition fees are often linked to a university’s ranking. The higher the ranking, the more expensive the degree course is likely to be. This particularly holds true when comparing data about undergraduate degrees at Australian universities from the QS World University Rankings, with charged tuition fees.

The graph above by StudyMove (Consulting Firm) analyses the correlation between a university’s QS world ranking and degree tuition fees in Australia.

Australian universities below the red dotted line are more expensive compared to their QS World rank, while universities above the red dotted line are more affordable than their ranking would suggest. Anything close to the AU$28,000 mark and the 200 to 300 ranking range is pretty much spot on.

Highlights of the pricing versus ranking comparison

The breakdown of the table data can be split into 3 categories:

1. Universities more expensive than their ranking would suggest:

  • Bond University
  • University of Technology Sydney
  • University of New South Wales
  • RMIT University
  • University of Newcastle

2. Universities providing tuition fees in accordance with their ranking:

  • University of Melbourne
  • University of Sydney
  • Australian National University
  • Western Sydney University – cheaper but also lower ranking
  • University of Adelaide

3. Universities charging less than what would be expected given their ranking:

  • University of Wollongong
  • University of Tasmania (Full Scholarships)
  • James Cook University
  • Queensland University of Technology
  • Deakin University
  • Charles Darwin University

Costs for higher ranked Australian degrees

With an average annual fee of 43,000 AUD/year, University of New South Wales (UNSW) charges more than any other Australian university for its degrees – yet the university doesn’t have the highest place in the QS World Rankings. While UNSW might not be viewed as good value for money as other universities, some of the departments rank extremely well on a number of international rankings by subject. Many people prefer to pay premium dollars for the recognition of graduating with one of the most highly ranked degrees in Australia for a specific area of study.

For around 3,000 AUD less a year, you could also study at the Australian National University, the University of Sydney or the University of Melbourne – also highly ranked in university rankings.

University of Melbourne

Paying less for a lower ranked but good quality degree

For many students, however, the financial burden of studying at one of these universities will far outweigh any benefit that might be gained by graduating with a highly-ranked degree. You might consider universities that still rank in the top 300 globally but which charge at, or well below, the expected fee.

  • Deakin University – 30,520 AUD/year
  • Curtin University of Technology – 29,400 AUD/year
  • James Cook University – 29,000 AUD/year
  • University of Tasmania – 28,500 AUD/year
  • Queensland University of Technology – 27,600 AUD/year

Other factors to consider for your degree in Australia

Rankings and upfront fee costs aren’t the only criteria you might factor into your calculations when choosing where to study your degree. Here are a few more considerations that can impact the overall cost of your degree as well as the value you get out of it.

1. Student-to-staff ratios

Having smaller classes allows staff to have more one on one time with students and also gives you more opportunity to get to know other students and share knowledge.

QS World ranked universities with less students:

  • Universities of Newcastle
  • University of Adelaide
  • University of Tasmania
  • Flinders University
  • Bond University

Largest enrolments:

  • Monash University
  • Queensland University of Technology
  • University of Technology Sydney

2. University location

Some students thrive on city life or want to be close to expats from their home country.

Universities in great city locations:

  • University of Sydney, Sydney
  • University of Melbourne, Melbourne

Excellent if you love bright city lights and money for accommodation and fun is no issue.

Universities in smaller cities:

  • University of Tasmania, Hobart (Full Scholarships)
  • James Cook University, Brisbane
  • University of South Australia, Adelaide

You’ll be able to live amongst the locals, get plenty of opportunities to improve your English, get everywhere on foot, and make extra savings towards enjoying university life.

3. Improved permanent resident chances

Studying for at least two years in a specific regional area may entitle you to additional points on that state’s migration points test. Some states also have specific jobs listed on their Skilled Occupation List, which gives applicants who have studied in their state further points. To know more about The Best Courses For Scoring Australian Residency click here

Tasmania, South Australia, Northern Territory, and Western Australia all include jobs on their occupation lists for their state’s graduates so studying at universities in those states is worth considering if you are looking to work in Australia after graduation.

UTAS China

Making the right choice of higher education in Australia

Determining what university will give you the best value for your buck is a juggling act and ultimately comes down to your priorities. If money is no object and you want to graduate with a degree from the most elite university in Australia, University of Melbourne, University of Sydney, University of Western Australia or UNSW are possibly your best bet. On the other hand, if you want to combine lower tuition fees with a degree from a well-ranked university that provides you with other advantages such smaller class sizes and migration prospects, then a globally ranked regional universities such as the University of Tasmania or the University of South Australia may be a better choice for you. Here’s why Malaysian Students Choose UTAS

Whether you’re considering an English language course, bachelor degree, master’s degree, or PhD research, Sofiri is a free and convenient way to find out what you’re eligible to study. Our Education Experts are some of the most knowledgeable professionals in the education industry today.

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