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Australia Study Abroad Program at University of Melbourne

About University of Melbourne in Australia

  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 (4.0 scale)
  • Application deadlines: November 1 for semester 1 (Feb-June)
    November 1 for calendar year (Feb-Nov)
    March 15 for semester 2 (July-Nov)
    March 15 for academic year (July-June)
  • Program advisor: Emma Diebold
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Program Snapshot


We're so excited that you're considering IFSA-Butler's program at the University of Melbourne for your semester or year abroad. Melbourne is consistently ranked in the top "Most Livable Cities" in the world, and it is the arts capital of Australia, with theatres, concert venues, galleries and arts events, and a thriving local music scene! We're sure you're going to love studying there!

What Melbourne has to offer

  • One of Australia's leading research and higher education institutions
  • One of the top 40 universities in the world and the top in Australia according to the 2013 Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings
  • Six subjects (education, law, linguistics, psychology, accounting and finance, and medicine) that are ranked in the top ten in the 2013 QS World University Rankings
  • Interesting and innovative interdisciplinary programs
  • Live in the heart of Melbourne, rated for three years in a row the world's most liveable city
  • On-campus health service, post office, banks, restaurant, cafe, bistro, food cooperative, pharmacy, dental service, hair salon, news agent, bookstore, computer store, travel agent, cinema, theatres, art galleries, and stalls selling fruits, vegetables, clothing and general merchandise
  • An energetic atmosphere due to an active student union that sponsors concerts, speakers and cultural events
  • Union House, the hub of campus social life and home to many of the 160 clubs and societies
  • Great indoor and outdoor athletic facilities, including a mountain lodge
  • A four-day University of Melbourne orientation, included in your program fees, allows you to meet other international students, Australian host students and get to know Melbourne and the university campus


  • Off-campus housing in UniLodge or on-campus housing in residential colleges available
  • UniLodge, a privately owned student complex downtown, is within walking distance of the campus
  • Students may also apply to live in one of the residential colleges
  • Students who live in UniLodge purchase or prepare their own meals; residential colleges include meals as part of the housing fee


  • Most classes are organized around a core series of lectures and tutorials, while students work independently on research projects and essays
  • Students take a varied number of courses, depending on course weight

We look forward to working with you!



Where can I find a list of courses that the university offers?

  1. Open the University of Melbourne online course catalog.
  2. Click on the faculty (general area of study) in which you are looking for courses (called subjects at University of Melbourne).
  3. Click on the department for a list of courses. You can also search for subjects by keyword.

What courses am I eligible to take?
As an IFSA-Butler student, you are entitled to enroll in undergraduate courses for which you are qualified and in which space is available. Course descriptions in the online course catalog (see above) include prerequisites you must fulfill in order to enroll in each course.

When considering departments and courses, please note that:

  • Remember in Australia, U.S. fall semester = semester 2 and U.S. spring semester = semester 1. Be sure to select courses for the correct semester you are studying abroad.
  • University of Melbourne course codes are listed with four letters and five digits. Make sure to type the letters and digits in your course preference email to your program advisor. You are not eligible to take graduate courses.
  • Melbourne's main campus is Parkville, but Arts classes are primarily at the Southbank campus, a short commute on public transportation. Classes at the Burnley campus may also be open to study abroad students, but please be aware that the commute from Parkville to Burnley takes approximately an hour on public transportation. The four other campuses in Victoria (Creswick, Dookie, Shepparton and Werribee) are for graduate students only and are not open to study abroad students.
  • Students wishing to take courses at the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA) on the Southbank Campus or the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (MCM) on the Parkville Campus must be pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a specialty at their home university, majoring in the area they wish to study while abroad, and they cannot choose courses in other disciplines. All coursework must be done in the VCA or MCM. Areas of study for study abroad students at the VCA or MCM are art (drawing, painting and photography), dance (ballet and contemporary, choreography and performance), production, and music (improvisation, composition and performance). Study abroad students are not eligible for theatre/drama or film/television courses. Supplemental items are required for admission to the VCA and MCM. Please contact your program advisor for specifics.
  • Non-majors do have some options at VCA. Students who are not enrolled in a BFA program are eligible to apply for "Breadth" subjects offered at the VCA/MCM. Click here for more information.
  • Supplemental items are required for admission to the VCA. Please contact your program advisor for specifics.

What if I need to take a required course?
Please be aware that IFSA-Butler cannot guarantee that your host university will offer a particular course, or that you will be allowed to take that particular course. However, if you need to take a required course, you may indicate that it is required in your course preference email with an asterisk (*) by the course title. Your IFSA-Butler program advisor will communicate your needs to the University of Melbourne.

Past IFSA-Butler students have particularly enjoyed the University of Melbourne's Australia Now course; more information on this course can be found here.

Course Restrictions

The University of Melbourne has course restrictions in certain faculties and disciplines. Click here to view the list of restrictions.

Also please note that Melbourne does not permit study abroad students to take Honours/4th year level courses or postgraduate courses.


How many courses am I able to take, and how do I determine U.S. semester credit hours?
IFSA-Butler requires students to enroll in a full course load at the host institution. The University of Melbourne requires all study abroad students, except in very special cases, to take four courses worth 12.5 points for a total of 50 points. The number of courses you will take depends on the individual credit value of the courses you select. For information on the credit weight, please consult the information below.

6.25 UME points = 2 U.S. semester credit hours
12.5 UME points = 4 U.S. semester credit hours
50 UME points = 16 U.S. semester credit hours


What are the registration conditions?
You must take a full University of Melbourne course load as determined by IFSA-Butler. Credit will be awarded on a Butler University transcript based on a typical U.S. full course load. All courses are graded on an A-F scale, and there is no provision for pass/fail or auditing courses unless pass/fail is the only method of assessment for the course. You are not allowed to register for online, distance education or hybrid courses.

You should also be aware that you may be charged additional fees by your home institution or host university to take or process additional credits. Taking less than a full course load may jeopardize your student status and result in personal academic repercussions and/or loss of financial aid.

The course preference email is not a registration form; it is a guideline to let your host university know which courses you are interested in taking abroad. You should discuss your course selections with your academic advisor at your home institution and have several backup choices in mind. Neither you nor the university is bound by your selections, and you will not officially register for courses until you arrive on campus.


What do I need to know about exams?
Because of the differences in the academic systems, you will not know your exam schedule until after you arrive at your host university. Please refer to your program calendar to review the exam period for your host university. Your host university's policies do not permit you to reschedule any exams, request alternate assessments or arrange to have your exams proctored in the United States. If this occurs, IFSA-Butler cannot assist you in conducting a grade appeal or academic follow-up for the course in which you made this arrangement. You will need to complete and submit all academic work prior to departing the program.


How will my home university know what my classes were and what grades I received?
After you have returned to the U.S., your home university will receive a Butler University transcript with the credit you earned at the University of Melbourne. The Butler University transcript will report the equivalent U.S. semester credit hours and letter grades. We also will send an official transcript to your permanent address.


Housing Options

What are my housing options?

Most IFSA-Butler students live off-campus in UniLodge apartments. Students may also apply for a spot on campus at a residential college.

UniLodge is an off-campus student apartment complex that provides an urban living experience. All of the residents at UniLodge attend a university in Melbourne, but not necessarily the University of Melbourne. Many of the residents will be international students. The University of Melbourne is about a 20-minute walk or 10-minute trolley ride away. You will also be able to prepare your own meals in the apartment's kitchen or take advantage of the numerous cafes and restaurants that are nearby. Off-campus housing is a great option for students who want to experience independent city living in addition to campus life.

Most apartments will house two students on the IFSA-Butler program. Each student has his or her own bedroom with a bed, desk, closet and dresser. The kitchenette has a small refrigerator, cook top and microwave, bedding and shared kitchen items are provided. Living rooms are furnished with a lounge suite, dining table and chairs, TV/VCR and are heated centrally. There is one communal bathroom per flat.

Network Internet and telephone service is available (fees paid by residents). A student life program called Community Spirit has been set up to encourage community involvement and also provide support to residents. IFSA-Butler's housing fee includes the joining fee for this program. Recent programs have included a ski trip to Mount Buller, a night tour of the gaol, barbeques, Aussie sports trips, game nights, movie nights and cross-cultural celebrations.

Students will have the option to join the University of Melbourne gym (or any local gym), as well as join University of Melbourne clubs and sporting teams. All fees are paid by the student. This gives students the opportunity to determine their own level of involvement in both off-campus and on-campus settings.

On-campus residential colleges are a great option for students who want to get involved in the local student community. They provide the following amenities:

  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily
  • Access to an on-site library and many of the textbooks required for your courses
  • Subject tutors
  • Internet access
  • Formal dinners and guest speakers
  • Social clubs and sporting clubs, including intercollegial sporting competitions
  • Theatre/music productions
  • Access to gyms, common rooms and games rooms
  • Orientation activities

Residential colleges feature an active and welcoming student community of primarily Australian students, as well as a mix of international students. Please visit this site or the college websites listed below for further information regarding living in a college. Note that if you wish to apply to a residential college, IFSA-Butler will make the application for you on your behalf.

International House offers single rooms and University College offers IFSA-Butler students a large room-share option. All rooms have desks, single beds with linen provided, wardrobe space and furnished common areas with TV, games rooms, couches etc.

The college is within a five- to 15-minute walk to the university. There is a very strong student community and support at each of the colleges, and they are an ideal option for students wanting to live on campus and be involved in an active student life.

If you prefer to live in a residential college, please select that option on your housing preference form and be aware that there will be a minimum $5,500 supplemental bill per semester for the additional cost of the housing services and meals. If your home college pays the housing fee on your behalf, this additional fee for residential colleges may be your responsibility. Be sure to verify which housing costs your home college is willing to cover. There will also be additional application materials required, which your program advisor will provide.

The following residential colleges are available:

If you wish to apply to a residential college, IFSA-Butler will make the application for you on your behalf.

Note that residential colleges are very popular and admissions are extremely competitive, so placements in a college are not guaranteed. The placements are determined by the college, not IFSA-Butler, and if you aren't allocated a spot in a residential college you will be placed in UniLodge housing. Housing assignments are released about two weeks prior to departure.


Students living in UniLodge are responsible for preparing their own meals in shared kitchen areas.

Students living in a residential college will have breakfast, lunch and dinner provided daily as part of the supplemental housing fee, which may not be covered for some students whose home campuses have a direct billing arrangement with IFSA-Butler. Contact your home campus study abroad office for clarification on which housing and meal fees are your responsibility.

Housing FAQs

Is my housing included in the program fee?
Yes. Your program fee includes accommodation at the university while classes are in session. You will be responsible for any commuting costs you may incur. Australian university housing requires students to move out during breaks between semesters. If you are studying abroad for a year and wish to remain in residence during the vacation period(s), you must notify the university housing office upon arrival to make necessary arrangements. Staying in residence during these breaks may incur additional costs not covered by the IFSA-Butler program fee.

When will I receive my housing assignment?
You will most likely receive your housing assignment one to two weeks before your departure. However, in some cases you may not receive your housing assignment until you arrive in Australia for orientation. Your program advisor will notify you of your housing assignment via e-mail when it is released by the university.

Please keep in mind that while IFSA-Butler guarantees housing, we cannot guarantee your preferences.

Can I arrange my own housing?
Yes. IFSA-Butler recognizes that some students require independent housing for their time abroad. If you choose not to take advantage of our guaranteed housing, you may sign up for independent housing on the housing preference form. Once you've made this choice, we will not provide housing for you or bill you for the accommodation fee.

Please be advised that housing costs can be high abroad, and many times students living independently end up spending more money than students living in IFSA-Butler arranged housing. If you are hoping to save money by arranging housing on your own, please research your options early so you can compare costs. You must notify us of your intention to live in independent housing by the program application deadline for your term abroad, listed at the top of this page. We are not able to accommodate independent housing requests after the deadline.

Location Info

Living and Studying Abroad in Melbourne, Australia

About Melbourne
Population: 4.65 million
Location: State of Victoria, on the southeast edge of Australia

City features

  • Known as the "World's Most Livable City"
  • A great combination of ultramodern development and 19th-century architecture
  • The arts capital of Australia, with theatres, concert venues, galleries and arts events, and a thriving local music scene
  • World class sporting teams and events, including Aussie Rules football, the Melbourne Cup (horse racing), the Australian Masters (golf) and the Australian Grand Prix (Formula One racing)

Do more!

  • Sun and swim at great beaches just outside the city
  • Drive the Great Ocean Road from Melbourne to Adelaide, one of the most beautiful drives in all of Australia
  • Walk the trails of Mornington Peninsula National Park for magnificent views of seascapes

City of Melbourne
CitySearch Melbourne
Visit Victoria
VICNET-Victoria's Community Network
Melbourne and Victoria News

Dates & Fees

Program Dates

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IFSA-Butler orientation begins at 11 a.m. on the orientation start date.

Your program end date may change due to circumstances beyond IFSA-Butler's control. Upon arrival at your host university, be sure to verify your exam schedule and program end date. We also strongly recommend that you investigate fees and penalties associated with your airline tickets in case you need to make date or route changes.

All program support services end on the “Program Ends” date.

Exams must be taken where and when scheduled. Under no circumstances may students request that an exam time be changed. In Australia exams are taken under formal examination conditions, and changes cannot be made for individuals.

Program Fees

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What's included in our Australia program fees
Expense calculator

Calendar Year and Semester 1 Payments Due: December 15
Academic Year and Semester 2 Payments Due:
May 15

Program Fee Bills
IFSA-Butler will send a single bill for tuition, services and housing. Any bills for tuition differentials and/or supplemental housing fees will be sent separately. Students who opt for independent housing will not be charged the housing component of the program fee.

The housing component of our program fee is based on the average cost of local student self-catering accommodation, usually a shared room in a regular dormitory, apartment or house without any extra features.

Personal Cost Estimates

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Expense calculator

These figures are designed to assist students with financial planning but are only estimates based on past students’ experiences at the current exchange rate. They do not include any entertainment or vacation travel costs. Meals are estimated based on the cost of a weekly standard grocery shop with one meal out.  If you plan to eat out once a day or more, we recommend using a higher estimate.  If you have dietary restrictions or follow a specific diet (gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, organic, etc), you may also wish to budget more due to the higher cost of specialty food items.

The above numbers are general estimates of expenses during a program abroad. We recommend taking into account your current spending habits, the cost of living in your host country and the current exchange rate. Your IFSA-Butler program advisor can be helpful as you attempt to work on a personal budget for your experience abroad.

Meals: Students living in UniLodge are responsible for preparing their own meals in shared kitchen areas. Students living in residential colleges will have breakfast, lunch and dinner provided daily as part of the supplemental housing fee.

If your home college pays the housing fee on your behalf, the supplemental fee for residential colleges may be your responsibility. Be sure to verify which housing costs your home college is willing to cover.

Personal Miscellaneous: Covers general expenses of college life, including course supplies, photocopying, toiletries, snacks, personal care, etc.

Commuting: Estimates are for transportation between housing and university. Transportation for personal or recreational purposes is not included in the above estimates.

All costs are in U.S. dollars.

Meet Your IFSA-Butler Team

IFSA-Butler has a dedicated team of staff who are here to help students prepare for their program in Australia:

emmaProgram Advisor Emma Diebold assists with the application process and is here to answer program, cultural and academic questions before departure. Emma completed her undergraduate degree in Geography: Travel & Tourism at Ball State University. She went abroad with the BSU Geography Department to Eastern and Central Europe and has enjoyed personal travels to several destinations including Belgium, France, Ireland, Peru, Ecuador and The Bahamas. Emma joined the IFSA-Butler team to aid students who want to explore the world and advises students planning to study abroad in England. Emma can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229, ext. 4258.

beckiStudent Accounts Coordinator Becki Niccum assists with the financial side of study abroad and processes payments and invoices. Becki can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-3077.


altStudent & Parent Services Manager Donnetta Spears is available to both students and parents for travel questions and information. Donnetta has worked with IFSA-Butler since 2000, and she has traveled through parts of Europe, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. As the mother of 4 college students (including one who studied abroad on an IFSA-Butler program), she has a deep understanding of the ins-and-outs of study abroad from a parent perspective. Donnetta can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-4252.

lindsey meldrumOnce abroad, our students are in the capable hands of our on-site office, including our Student Services Coordinator Lindsey Meldrum. Click here to read more about Lindsey.





abbyAcademic Records Coordinator Abby Miller graduated from Butler University where she worked as a guide for international students from all over the world. From that experience and combined with her own world travels, she knows the amazing experiences that studying abroad can provide. Abby is excited to work with IFSA-Butler students and to help answer any questions about their academic records. Abby can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229, ext. 4217.

Get Connected

Connect with IFSA-Butler Students

If you really want to know what it's like to study abroad, connect with IFSA-Butler alumni and students who are currently abroad on an IFSA-Butler program. Check out the following:
Student Network
Student Blogs
Experiences Abroad Videos
For Students

Institute for Study Abroad, Alliance For Global Education and MORE CULTURE. LESS SHOCK. are registered marks of the Institute for Study Abroad, Inc.