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what my uni course will cost me

June 7th, 2010 at 11:45 pm

June & July are going to be interesting months for me.

I am *this* close to being able to apply for my course at university. (You are allowed to apply for Semester 3 intake after the 31st July - for a November start).

There has been no talk at all of me + apprenticeship at work, so I am still taking that as a 'No' on my boss's behalf. Whatever.

Even though I am not jumping out of my socks at the thought of studying commerce, as opposed to... say... watching movies all day wrapped in a doona drinking hot chocolate. But the fact is I do find the whole thing very interesting, and I find the prospect of what I can DO with my studies once I've completed them, or even half completed them, exciting.

So that's the study-front sorted.

I've looked into the funding side of things a bit as well, but I think I get more information after I apply through QTAC.

But this is what I have figured out so far:

It costs ~$50-$100 to apply online and that covers three preference changes (not that I will be changing preferences, I don't think).

The government covers a percentage of tertiary study costs. I have no idea of the full course costs, so that doesn't really help me in any way, other than make me feel like I pay my taxes for a reason Big Grin
woohoo for Australia!

Students have a 'contribution' amount they have to pay, which is what is left after the government pays their bit.

The contribution amount differs depending on what you're studying. Art, Nutrition, Design etc are on a lower cost band than say, Business, Law or Medicine. I think there is actually three or four band costs, but that's not really important (to me, I mean).

You don't actually find out what your contribution amount is until you've applied and been accepted, but they do give you the previous years amounts so you can see what it might be. So for the previous years, a Bachelor of Commerce has had a contribution amount of ~$1050 per unit. There are 12 units to complete in 6 years. So my initial study costs will be ~$13000 or so. I think. Unless I'm wrong. Big Grin

You can pay the full mount upfront and get a 20% discount. Which would be nice if I had that money to spend, but I don't. So instead you can elect to pay it off, through wage deductions each week, once your earnings hit a certain amount. Which apparently at the moment is around $40k a year.

Of course there are books to think about as well. No idea how much they will cost, but the good thing is that for distance study, they include everything you need pretty much, so that will take a load off my mind.

I talked to a friend of ours who did some study online, and loved it. She was really excited for me, and told me if I needed help to just ask her, but then said she found distance study better than on-campus study, and that I would be fine. This is very encouraging for me because for the most part, everyone has pooh-poohed the idea of online study. So yay.

Anyway. Sorry this was all just pretty much a ramble of thoughts about study. But atleast you now know the costs of studying in Australia vs the US.

I'm interested to know too, because for the most part everyone seems to have HUGE student loans on here. Is this the norm?

I think Australia seems to have an interesting way to fund study. Of course I'd be happier if tertiary study was FREE, like in some countries... but I think we have it fairly good.

The only thing that is lacking here, is the assistance provided while you're studying. I'm not even going to bother to look into it for myself, because I have only ever dealt with government assistance once in my life, when I finished school and while I was searching for a job. I absolutely hated it - and some people go on government assistance, pretending to look for a job, and just bludge all day, every day, for months and even years.

But I think it is unfair that someone who is studying full time, gets LESS per week than someone sitting on their butt at home full-time with no job and no study to do. It's just wrong.

6 Responses to “what my uni course will cost me”

  1. skydivingchic Says:

    Good luck whitestripe! I am just finishing my second quarter of an online master's degree program from University of Washington here in the States. Obviously I don't know how the Australia system compares to the US, but I've found the online format to be nice. The classes I'm taking are the same as those I would take on campus, just in a different format. The one thing I will say is that you must have good study habits and discipline. No one will be checking up on you and you don't have a set time to show up at class, so it is probably not a good format for natural procrastinators.

  2. Frugaltexan75 Says:

    Hi Whitestripe,

    I think you're going to have so much fun! Smile

    Your classes are a lot more than mine - I'll have 36 masters level credits when I'm finished, and without scholarships (hoping to get some!) it will cost around $13,500. I won't be out much for textbooks - right now I have my books for the Fall classes and am just about even on costs after selling the old texts.

  3. whitestripe Says:

    laura, how many years of study have you done?

  4. MonkeyMama Says:

    I don't really have a concept of college costs, being in California (like another country? LOL). A lot of public education - and the best schools are public, for most areas of study.

    That said, my entire university (over 5 years) cost about $10k (all uni costs included). It wasn't that hard to work and earn that extra $150 per month. ($150 x 12 months x 5 years approximated total cost). Whereas, I knew a LOT of people who borrowed to maintain a higher standard of living. (Most of the people I went to school with, worked).

    I can imagine in other areas of the U.S., people get the triple whammy of expensive private educations, not working, and maintaining more lifestyle than they should. All these factors contribute to the student loan mess.

  5. MonkeyMama Says:

    P.S. I MUCH prefer in person classes. I took one or two Masters classes before moving. Online classes left so much to be desired, I decided to quit and commute 4 hours round trip once a week, sometime in the future, to finish my Grad program. WE had some excellent lecturers, anyway. I Felt like so much more info and ideas were exchanged in class. The type of class I suppose would dictate how important all that is. For more basic courses - who cares, you know.

    The flip side is if I felt I needed a degree, online would be my only feasible choice right now. It's not all bad.

  6. whitestripe Says:

    If I wasn't confident about the uni that provides the course I would consider in person classes - but luckily the uni that offers the online classes actually has around 70-90% of their attendance through online classes Big Grin so I feel pretty safe with them. They have online communities, and people you can call at ANY time to talk to about the work.
    I never thought about breaking it down into weekly costs - it really puts a different spin on it. It seems smaller when it's done like that lol.

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