International Student Essentials

Living and studying abroad is challenging, exciting and rewarding. SCU International has a team of dedicated staff who will assist you to settle into life and study in Australia and support you throughout your student journey. Are you ready to start your journey?

Arrive in Australia on time

We recommend you arrive in Australia a week before your course start date, if possible, to allow time to settle in and rest before you attend the compulsory SCU International Orientation.

  1. 1

    Apply for your visa as early as possible

    If you require a student visa, you can apply for this as soon as you receive a CoE from Southern Cross University. It is your responsibility to ensure you receive your visa on time. For information about visas and studying in Australia (including how to apply), please visit .

  2. 2

    Understand your visa conditions

    The Australian Government Department of Home Affairs takes visa breaches very seriously, so please make sure you carefully read and understand your visa conditions. For important visa holder information, including visa conditions that apply to individuals (and their dependents) planning to study in Australia, please visit .

Important student visa conditions

The Australian Government Department of Home Affairs (DHA) takes visa breaches very seriously, so please make sure you read and understand your visa conditions and comply with these conditions at all times.

Do you know these important Student Visa conditions?

Other conditions for international students

Here are some other important conditions that apply to international students:

Top TipFor more important visa information, including visa conditions that apply to individuals (and dependents) planning to study in Australia, please visit .

Australian culture

It’s helpful to understand the cultural norms of any country you visit or live in. Australia is a multicultural country, but still has cultural practices and traditions that may be different to yours.

Some key values that reflect the Australian way of life include:

  • respect for the equal worth, dignity and freedom of the individual,
  • freedom of speech,
  • freedom of association,
  • freedom of religion,
  • support for parliamentary democracy and the rule of law,
  • equality under the law,
  • equality of men and women,
  • equality of opportunity, regardless of race, religion or ethnic background,
  • a spirit of egalitarianism that embraces mutual respect, tolerance, fair play, compassion for those in need and pursuit of the public good.

Australia has no formal class distinctions. Segregation between people of different incomes or backgrounds is not considered to be acceptable. For example, customer service staff are to be treated with the same respect as you would a doctor, or university professor. Men and women are equal in Australia and there are no rules about who you can and can’t mix with.

Did you know?At Southern Cross University we expect you to ask questions. Don't hold back!

Location, location, location

Australia is a large country and distances can be deceptive. It is important to live close to your campus – do not put your studies at risk by spending too much time travelling to and from your campus.

Living and study expenses in Australia

During Orientation Week, you will be given some tips on budgeting and expenses to consider while living and studying in Australia. However, you can already start preparing now.

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  • We recommend you organise short-stay accommodation prior to your arrival. offers helpful information about short-stay accommodation options for students.
  • Southern Cross University offers services to help you find long-term accommodation off-campus () or accommodation at one of our on-campus residential colleges at and .
  • You can also contact an accommodation officer at the Gold Coast, Lismore and Coffs Harbour campuses for any accommodation enquiries at .
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Budgeting tips

  • Investigate general living costs in Australia to get an idea of your weekly expenses. provides up to date information on living costs for people planning to study in Australia.
  • Calculate your tuition fees for every study session so you can budget for this.
  • Consider other study costs, including textbooks, stationery, printing etc.

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Well done on completing the International Student Essentials module about life and study in Australia. We're excited that you're joining us and look forward to welcoming you soon! Please contact if you have any questions.