Masters in Computer Science in Australia: Course Guide for International Students

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    Bhavya Rawal

    Study Abroad Expert

    Masters in Computer Science in Australia is a 1.5 to 2 years program with tuition fees ranging from 38,120 AUD to 91,709 AUD in leading universities. The average annual salary of masters in computer science graduates in Australia is 90,000 AUD. Eligibility for an international student to pursue masters in computer science in Australia is to have a bachelor’s degree in CS, IT or relevant field and language proficiency.

    • With high job prospects after a Masters in Computer Science in Australia, they can apply for PR directly on gaining sufficient points. 
    • Australian universities have two intake sessions for the program: February and July 
    • The comprehensive program involves the study of the design and development of computer systems to equip the students for a leadership role in computing and technology.

    Why study Masters in Computer Science in Australia?

    • Times Higher Education World University Ranking ranks 23 leading Australian Universities amongst the top 750 international universities for Computer Science programs.
    • The top 5 Australian universities offering an MS in Computer Science are listed amongst the top 150 universities for computer science programs according to THE and QS World University Rankings.
    • The top Australian universities, University of Melbourne and ANU offering the program have a high international student enrollment of 46% and 44%, respectively.
    • Australian Computer Society (ACS) predicts there will be a greater demand for computer science graduates by 2024 owing to a shortage of 100,000 employees with 164,000 qualifications.
    • The number of international students in the recent past pursuing Computer Science and Mathematics program in Australia was registered to be 24,000
    • International students with a skilled graduate temporary visa can work from 18 months to 3 years after the completion of studies. 
    • The graph compares the projected employment outlook of careers open to computer science professionals in Australia from 2018 to 2023.
    Employment in 2018 and 2023 projection by Sector

    The graph clearly indicates that the demand for software and application programmers is higher with a projection of 80,000 job openings over 5 years with the inclusion of nearly 16,000/ year. 

    Top Universities for Masters in Computer Science in Australia

    The following table details the top Australian Universities offering a master's program in Computer Science ranked in accordance with THE World University Rankings 2020 by Subject: Computer Science along with the duration of the program and the course fee.

    THE World University Rankings University Program/Duration Program Cost (AUD)
    56 University of Melbourne Master of Computer science(2 years) 91,709
    69 Australian National University Master of Computing(2 years)
    Master of Computing(Advanced)2 years
    79 University of Technology, Sydney Master of Science(research) in Computing Sciences(2 years) 71,760
    96 University of Adelaide Master of Computer Science (2 years) 84,000
    101-125 The University of Queensland Master of Computer Science(1.5 years)
    Master of Computer Science(1 year)
    201-250 Victoria University MSc (research) computer science(2 years) 60,800
    201-250 University of Wollongong Master of Computer Science(2 years) 68,736
    251-300 RMIT university Master of Computer Science (1.5 years) 53,760
    301-400 Curtin University MSc Computer Science(2 years) 64,400
    301-400 La Trobe University Master of Computer Science(2 years) 79,200

    Apart from pursuing masters in computer science in Australia, applicants can also pursue masters in computer engineering from top computer science colleges in Australia

    Masters in Computer Science: What is it About?

    Detailed below is the outline of the program, course curriculum, types of degrees offered in Australia for pursuing a PG degree in Computer Science. The top universities in Australia offer the masters program in Computer Science under the Information Technology Department, Faculty of Science, and School of Engineering. Hence the criteria of the same apply to masters in Computer Science in Australia also. 

    Course Curriculum: The master's degree in Computer Science is for prospective students with an undergraduate degree in a related subject or significant work experience. The course is structured to provide a strong foundation of advanced computer science topics to enhance career prospects. Emphasis is placed upon the structured design of algorithms, programming techniques, high-level description of the abstract architecture of the von Neumann machine, numerical and non-numerical applications. Hence the program equips the students with the following technical and professional skills for higher career outcomes.

    • Critical thinking and problem-solving
    • Research planning and execution
    • Scientific communication.

    Degree types: 

    The degree types offered through the master's program in Computer Science except Computer Science Engineering include:

    • Masters of Computer Science: The degree involves a course-based program involving a broad base of high-level knowledge in areas of knowledge systems, programming languages and distributed computing, information systems, mathematics/statistics, spatial information science or linguistics.
    • Master of Science in Computer Science: The degree involves a research-based program to extend and deepen their knowledge in a specialized area of computing by undertaking research under the supervision of a member of academic staff.

    Australian Universities do offer master's programs in related topics Computer Science including computing, IT, computer systems engineering, architecture applied broadly in the emerging sectors of AI, Data Science, Database Systems, Big Data, Telecommunications, and IT, and software engineering among many others.

    Specialization & Electives: The common areas of specializations offered by most Australian Universities include the following emerging fields: Intelligent Systems, Machine Learning, and Big data, Network and Information Security, Software Engineering, Big data management, Cloud computing, Mobile computing, Software architecture, Web systems and Search technology

    Electives: Advanced Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Human-Computer Interaction, Programming Languages, and Distributed Computing, Spatial Information, etc. 

    Masters in Computer Science in Australia: Course Highlights

    Top universities offering the program More than 90 (23 top rankings)
    Duration of the program 1.5 to 2 years
    Course Fee Range 38,120 AUD to 91,709 AUD
    Top Specializations Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, Computing Systems
    Top Recruiting Companies Google, Microsoft, Intel, HP, Deloitte, KPWC, EY and much more
    Job positions Programmers, designers, analysts, managers, scientists, administrators, networking professionals, etc.
    Average Salaries 90,000 AUD

    Masters in Computer Science in Australia: Admissions

    International students should fulfill the English Language requirements in addition to meeting the academic and non-academic requirements as specified by the university to secure admission to masters in computer science in Australia. 

    Intake sessions and Deadlines

    Most of the top universities in Australia offer admission intakes twice a year during the months of February and July. The two teaching semesters run from February to June and from July to November. The university recommends international students apply well in advance of the specified deadlines to allow enough time for the Australian visa process and secure admission to the program in the desired semester. 

    How to Apply

    Prospective international students can apply to the universities in Australia for a masters program in Computer Science in one of the following ways:

    • Complete the online application in University’s official website/application portal well in advance of the application deadlines
    • Agents and representatives of the corresponding University to assist with the preparation and submission of the application to study as well as the student visa application.

    Masters in Computer Science in Australia: Eligibility

    The leading Australian universities follow similar eligibility criteria for both the international as well as domestic students. However, International students should meet the following criteria to be eligible for the program.

    • Minimum 15 years of education mandating a 10+2+3 breakup
    • A 3-4 year bachelor's degree in computer science, science, mathematics or other related fields. 
    • Work experience in a related field (recommended)
    • Proof of English proficiency

    University-Specific Eligibility Criteria

    The international students should fulfill the international credential equivalence and English language requirements as tabulated to secure admission to the masters in computer science in computer science colleges in Australia is as follows:

    University UG Credential Equivalence English Language Requirements
    University of Melbourne 75% in bachelors with Maths/statistics subjects IELTS:6.5
    TOEFL iBT:79+
    Australian National University Minimum GPA – 5/7 (or) GPA – 4/7 with at least 3 years of work experience in the related field IELTS: 6.5
    TOEFL iBT: 80
    PTE: 64
    CAE: 176
    University of Technology, Sydney Bachelors with major in computing IELTS: 6.5
    TOEFL iBT: 79
    PTE: 58
    University of Adelaide Strong foundation in Object-oriented programming IELTS: 6.5
    TOEFL iBT: 79
    PTE: 58
    CAE: 176
    The University of Queensland GPA:5/7 in bachelors IT/CSc IELTS:6.5
    TOEFL iBT:87
    Victoria University Overall 70% average in all subjects of the final year IELTS: 6.5
    TOEFL iBT: 79
    PTE: 58
    University of Wollongong 60% average IELTS: 6.5
    TOEFL iBT: 86
    RMIT University GPA:2/4 or equivalent (or) Work experience of at least 5 years in the related field IELTS:6.5
    TOEFL iBT:79
    Curtin University Bachelors in Science/honors/Postgraduate diploma IELTS:6.5
    La Trobe University 65% average IELTS:6.5
    TOEFL iBT:79

    Documents Required

    • Completed application form with the application fee. 
    • All academic transcripts including professional qualifications must be certified as a true copy of the original.
    • Certified English translations all academic documents accredited by the university specified agencies.
    • Proof of language proficiency in the form of tests required to study in Australia
    • official ID including the birth certificate, Citizenship documents or the passport, 
    • Financial affidavits as proof of funding
    • 2-3 letters of recommendation & Updated CV (if required)

    Admission Decision

    On successful submission of the completed application along with the supporting documents, the students receive a confirmation email. They can monitor the status of the application updated frequently in the student portal of the university. The ranking of the applications is based on prior academic performance. However, knowledge of formal logic and discrete mathematics and second-year university-level mathematics/statistics is recommended. 

    All applicants can expect to receive an outcome regarding the admission decisions of the university applied through Email. The Australian universities recommend a time frame of 4-8 weeks and 8-12 weeks from receipt of a complete application for graduate coursework and graduate research work in Computer Science towards admission decision.

    Masters in Computer Science in Australia: Cost of Study

    Planning ahead about the expenses always works in favor of an international student. International students planning for a master's in Computer Science in Australia should plan for sufficient funding in accordance with the pre-arrival, tuition, and living costs. The details of these expenses have been provided in the sections below:

    Pre-arrival Costs

    The pre-arrival costs include the one-time expenses incurred by the students while planning for their master's program in Australia. These are mostly the application fees for tests, Australian student visa, universities, etc. Some of your pre-arrival expenses have been tabulated below: 

    Expenses Cost(AUD)
    Application Fee 50 – 100(university dependent)
    Visa Fee 575
    IELTS Registration 340
    TOEFL Registration 235-370
    Health Insurance 438

    Masters in Computer Science in Australia: Tuition Fee

    Post-arrival, one of the largest expenses will be the tuition fees you submit at universities. The annual tuition fees for some of the popular universities offering the program is compared in the image below:

    Annual Tuition Fee by University

    This indicates that the cost of studying masters in Computer Science is least at Curtin University while the highest at Australian National University. With admission requirements almost equal, it is suggested that international students on a budget should look for options like Curtin, Victoria University, and others. 

    Cost of Living in Australia

    The costs of studying Masters in Computer Science in Australia largely depend on the education provider and the study location. The average annual living costs for international students in Australia as of October 2019 are 21,041 AUD of which accommodation costs constitute major expenses. The table lists the costs for different student accommodation types in Australia.

    Accommodation Type Monthly cost (AUD)
    Hotels & guesthouse 360 – 600
    Shared Rental 380 – 860
    On-campus 440 – 1120
    Homestay 940 – 1300
    Rental 740 – 1760
    Boarding Schools 1000 – 1800

    Masters in Computer Science in Australia with Scholarships

    Australian universities do offer financial aid to international students in the form of scholarships, loans, bursaries, and grants. Apart from the need and merit-based scholarship, the universities do offer department-specific scholarships to deserving international students in computer science degrees. The table enlists the financial-aid offered to international students in Australia pursuing the master's program in Computer Science.

    University Scholarship Details
    University of Melbourne Student Enrichment Grants No separate applications necessary and based on academic merit
    Jack Wynhoven Scholarship No separate applications necessary and based on academic merit
    ANU (Eng. & International Postgraduate Excellence Scholarship 50% tuition waiver for 1 year
    International Postgraduate Merit Scholarship 25% tuition waiver for 1 year
    UTS UTS President Scholarship Living allowance: 28,092 AUD/year for 2 years
    University of Adelaide Global Citizens Scholarship 15% to 30% tuition fee waiver for 2 years
    International scholarship 5 to 10% tuition fee waiver for 2 years
    Queensland University of Technology UQ Future Students Postgraduate scholarship for High Achievers-India 10,000 AUD tuition fee waiver for 1 year
    Schwarzman scholars Full tuition fees
    Victoria University VU International Excellence Scholarship 3000 AUD for the first two study periods & 6000 AUD towards tuition fee
    University of Wollongong Postgraduate Academic Excellence Scholarship 30% tuition fee waiver
    India Bursary Up to 20% tuition fee waiver
    RMIT University Future leaders Scholarship 20% tuition fee waiver for program duration
    Curtin University Merit Scholarship 25% first-year tuition fee waiver
    La Trobe University Excellence Scholarship Up to 25% tuition fee waiver

    Looking for more scholarships to study in Australia, click here to know more

    Job Opportunities after Masters in Computer Science in Australia

    With the demand for Computer Science and IT professionals growing worldwide day-by-day the career opportunities for graduates with a master's in Computer Science is vast and financially rewarding. The program equips the computer Science graduates for key roles in Computer and Information Technology related sectors including: 

    • Systems and security engineering
    • Software and hardware management
    • Network design, management, and engineering
    • Data communications
    • Telecommunications
    • Wireless networks.

    The potential careers of interest for computer science graduates in Australia are software developers and engineers, systems and cybersecurity analysts, data scientists and analysts, digital policy advisors, project managers, analysts, administrators, developers, programmers, hardware engineers, internet consultants, and multimedia/web Designer. 

    The following table compares the average annual salary for potential designations in the field of computer science.

    Job Profile Average Annual Salary
    Software and applications programmers 84,000
    Senior program developer 114,000
    Software developer 66,000
    Senior Database Administrator 105,000
    Web Developer 63,000
    Digital Marketing Manager 109,000
    Application Developer 67,000

    Computer Science professionals with hands-on experience in Machine Learning, Business Intelligence, Data Visualization, Data Warehousing, and Data Management are awarded higher salary packages in the emerging sectors of Cable & Media, Telecom, Hospitality, Banking, finance, and insurance. 

    The table lists the top employers recruiting computer Science professionals with a masters degree in the following emerging sectors:

    Employment sector Employers
    IT companies IBM, Microsoft, Yahoo, Intel, Google, Unisys
    Consulting firms Ernst & Young, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, KPMG, Deloitte and Accenture
    Major banks and financial services firms ANZ, National Australia Bank, Citigroup, the Australian Government, Bloomberg.
    Academic institutions Public research institutions, colleges, universities, schools

    According to the Job Outlook website of the Australian Government, the boom of the digital era has resulted in a number of job openings from newly created jobs and even due to turnover (workers leaving). The number of software & applications programmers, computer network professionals, managers, database administrators, and system analysts grew very strongly over the past 5 years and projected to grow very strongly over the next 5 years. Hence, International students prefer a master's program in Computer Science in Australia for its broad grounding across the breadth of advanced computer science.


    Ques. What is the eligibility for pursuing Masters in Computer Science in Australia

    Ans. International students are required to have a bachelors in a relevant subject with at least 60%. IELTS and TOEFL score is also required for pursuing MS in computer science in Australia. You must have at least 6.5 on your IELTS and 79-90 on your TOEFL exam.

    Ques. What are the best universities for studying masters in computer science in Australia?

    Ans. Some of the top computer science colleges in Australia offering masters in computer science are the University of Melbourne, ANU, UTS, University of Queensland, and the University of Adelaide.

    Ques. How much does a masters in computer science in Australia cost?

    Ans. The cost of pursuing masters in computer science in Australia 40,000 AUD to 90,000 AUD depending on the choice of university. Apart from this, you need around 21,000 AUD annually for living in Australia.

    Ques. How much can one with a masters in computer science in Australia?

    Ans. Post completion of a MS in computer science in Australia one can earn anywhere near 60,000-107,000 AUD annually.

    Ques. Is masters in computer science in Australia better than USA?

    Ans. Studying in the USA comes with a brand tag and highly prestigious universities. The choice of pursuing masters in computer science in Australia should be based on factors other than the quality of education. These include comparatively cheaper education, ease of getting a student visa, etc.