Australian Embassy

World Class and Affordable Education on Indonesia’s Doorstep

Media Release

17 March 2016

Australia remains the destination of choice for a new generation of Indonesian students with enrolments from Indonesia rising by 7.9 per cent in the past year, Australian Ambassador to Indonesia Paul Grigson said today.

“Over the past 12 months, Indonesian student enrolments in Australia have risen from 17,884 to 19,300. These students recognise that an Australian higher education is the key to greater opportunities into the future,” Ambassador Grigson said.

“The number of Indonesians choosing Australia will continue to rise as more students recognise that Australia has world class universities in affordable cities, with tuition fees up to half of the cost of comparable degrees in the United States,” he said.

According to the latest UNESCO data, 24 per cent of Indonesian university students abroad are studying in Australia.  Well ahead of other destinations such as the United States (18 per cent) and Malaysia (10 percent).  This number is 50 per cent larger than the number of Indonesian students in all of Europe combined.

Indonesian students are looking to Australia’s 41 higher educational institutions for more than just International Relations and Business courses.  The past twelve months have seen big increases in Indonesian student enrolments in the Health sector (20.6 per cent); Agriculture, Environmental and Related Studies (10.6 per cent); and, Architecture and Building (10.1 per cent).  The number of Indonesian students choosing to undertake Masters Degrees by coursework in Australia have also risen 5.9 per cent in the past 12 months.

Australia’s universities are considered among some of the world’s best.  According to the QS Top 100 University List 2015/16, seven of Australia’s universities are ranked among the world’s top 100.  Similarly, Australia’s newest universities are already considered world leaders.  According to the QS Top 50 under 50 rankings, eight of Australia’s universities under 50 years old are considered among the top 50 in the world.

Australian universities have also proven a competitive choice for those looking for a world class education, without the Ivy League cost.  Comparisons of tuition fees in universities ranked among the Top 100 in the world indicate annual fees for a Bachelor of Arts in Australia are less than half that of comparably ranked universities in the United States. 

Australia’s cost of living is also not as substantial as is often assumed.  Australian cities no longer rank among the world’s most expensive.  According to the Economist’s World Wide Cost of Living Survey for 2016, Australian cities are far less expensive than other popular study destinations such as Singapore (world’s most expensive city), Geneva (4th most expensive), Paris (5th most expensive), London (6th most expensive), New York (7th most expensive), Seoul (9th most expensive) and Tokyo (11th most expensive).  In contrast, Australia’s major cities are ranked 20th (Sydney), 21st (Melbourne), 49th (Brisbane), 53rd (Adelaide) and 56th (Perth). 

There has been massive growth in the Vocational Education and Training sector in 2015, with 8,226 Indonesian students– an increase of 21.4 per cent in 12 months.  Over the past five years, Indonesian student enrolments in this sector have grown by 45 per cent.

 “More and more Indonesian students are looking to Australia to gain practical vocational skills in areas such as Management and Commerce; Food, Hospitality and Personal Services and Information Technology,” Mr Grigson said.

The Australian Government has worked to ensure Indonesians have comprehensive information about the student visa application process and the necessary support required to apply for these visas.  As a result, the Australian Government grants over 95 per cent of all student visa applications from Indonesia students.

And Indonesian students are responding positively, not only with increasing numbers but in their feedback.  In a 2014 International Student Survey conducted in Australia, Indonesian students reported a higher level of satisfaction (over 90 per cent) with their overall experience learning and living in Australia than other nationalities.

“Australia is proud to assist Indonesian students get the most out of their overseas education experience.  We hope Indonesian students continue look close to home for a world-class, affordable education into the future,” he said.

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