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

Bhavya Rawal Bhavya Rawal
Study Abroad Expert

Masters in Computer Science in Australia is a 1.5 to 2 years postgraduate program with an average tuition fee ranging from 38,120 AUD to 91,709 AUD in leading universities. 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. 

  • The average annual salary of masters in computer science graduates in Australia is 90,000 AUD
  • With high job prospects in Australia after a Masters in Computer Science, they can apply for PR directly on gaining sufficient points. 
  • Australian universities have two intake sessions for the program: February and July

Why study Masters in Computer Science in Australia?

  • THE World University Ranking ranks 23 leading Australian Universities amongst the top 750 international universities for Computer Science programs.
  • The top 5 Australian universities offering a MS CSare listed amongst the top 150 universities for CS 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.
  • The number of international students in the recent past pursuing Computer Science and Mathematics program is 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. 

Program Highlights

Top universities offering the programMore than 90 (23 top ranking)
Duration of the program1.5 to 2 years
Course Fee Range38,120 AUD to 91,709 AUD
Top SpecializationsData Science, Artificial Intelligence, Computing Systems
Top Recruiting CompaniesGoogle, Microsoft, Intel, HP, Deloitte, KPWC, EY and much more
Job positionsProgrammers, designers, analysts, managers, scientists, administrators, networking professionals, etc.
Average Salaries90,000 AUD

Top Universities for Masters in Computer Science in Australia

The following table details the top Australian Universitiesoffering a masters 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 RankingsUniversityProgram/DurationProgram Cost (AUD)
56University of MelbourneMaster of Computer science(2 years)91,709
69Australian National UniversityMaster of Computing(2 years)
Master of Computing(Advanced)2 years
79University of Technology, SydneyMaster of Science(research) in Computing Sciences(2 years)71,760
96University of AdelaideMaster of Computer Science (2 years)84,000
101-125The University of QueenslandMaster of Computer Science(1.5 years)
Master of Computer Science(1 year)
201-250Victoria UniversityMSc (research) computer science(2 years)60,800
201-250University of WollongongMaster of Computer Science(2 years)68,736
251-300RMIT universityMaster of Computer Science (1.5 years)53,760
301-400Curtin UniversityMSc Computer Science(2 years)64,400
301-400La Trobe UniversityMaster of Computer Science(2 years)79,200

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 PG degree in Computer Science. 

Program Structure

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 applies to masters in Computer Science programs 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: 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 the program. 

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.

Eligibility Criteria for Masters in Computer Science

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 program in some of the popular universities in Australia:

UniversityUG Credential EquivalenceEnglish Language Requirements
University of Melbourne75% in bachelors with Maths/statistics subjectsIELTS:6.5
Australian National UniversityMinimum GPA – 5/7 (or) GPA – 4/7 with at least 3 years of work experience in the related fieldIELTS: 6.5
PTE: 64
CAE: 176
University of Technology, SydneyBachelors with major in computingIELTS: 6.5
PTE: 58
University of AdelaideStrong foundation in Object-oriented programmingIELTS: 6.5
PTE: 58
CAE: 176
The University of QueenslandGPA:5/7 in bachelors IT/CScIELTS:6.5
Victoria UniversityOverall 70% average in all subjects of the final yearIELTS: 6.5
PTE: 58
University of Wollongong60% averageIELTS: 6.5
RMIT UniversityGPA:2/4 or equivalent (or) Work experience of at least 5 years in the related fieldIELTS:6.5
Curtin UniversityBachelors in Science/honors/Postgraduate diplomaIELTS:6.5
La Trobe University65% averageIELTS:6.5

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 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

International students planning for a master's program in Computer Science should plan for sufficient funding in accordance with the pre-arrival, tuition and living costs.

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. Some of your pre-arrival expenses have been tabulated below: 

Application Fee50 – 100(university dependent)
Visa Fee575
IELTS Registration340
TOEFL Registration235-370
Health Insurance438

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 Universitywhile 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 depends 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 TypeMonthly cost (AUD)
Hotels & guesthouse360 – 600
Shared Rental380 – 860
On-campus440 – 1120
Homestay940 – 1300
Rental740 – 1760
Boarding Schools1000 – 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 deserving international students in the master's program in Computer Science.

University of MelbourneStudent Enrichment GrantsNo separate applications necessary and based on academic merit
Jack Wynhoven ScholarshipNo separate applications necessary and based on academic merit
ANU (Eng. & Postgraduate Excellence Scholarship50% tuition waiver for 1 year
International Postgraduate Merit Scholarship25% tuition waiver for 1 year
UTSUTS President ScholarshipLiving allowance: 28,092 AUD/year for 2 years
University of AdelaideGlobal Citizens Scholarship15% to 30% tuition fee waiver for 2 years
International scholarship5 to 10% tuition fee waiver for 2 years
Queensland University of TechnologyUQ Future Students Postgraduate scholarship for High Achievers-India10,000 AUD tuition fee waiver for 1 year
Schwarzman scholarsFull tuition fees
Victoria UniversityVU International Excellence Scholarship3000 AUD for the first two study periods & 6000 AUD towards tuition fee
University of WollongongPostgraduate Academic Excellence Scholarship30% tuition fee waiver
India BursaryUp to 20% tuition fee waiver
RMIT UniversityFuture leaders Scholarship20% tuition fee waiver for program duration
Curtin UniversityMerit Scholarship25% first-year tuition fee waiver
La Trobe UniversityExcellence ScholarshipUp 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. 

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

Job ProfileAverage Annual Salary
Software and applications programmers84,000
Senior program developer114,000
Software developer66,000
Senior Database Administrator105,000
Web Developer63,000
Digital Marketing Manager109,000
Application Developer67,000

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

Employment sectorEmployers
IT companiesIBM, Microsoft, Microsoft, Yahoo, Intel, Google, Unisys
Consulting firmsErnst & Young, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, KPMG, Deloitte and Accenture
Major banks and financial services firmsANZ, National Australia Bank, Citigroup, the Australian Government, Bloomberg.
Academic institutionsPublic 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.

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