Best and Worst Intake for studying in Australia as an international student

Best and Worst Intake for studying in Australia as an international student

Each year, thousands of students choose to study in Australia.

Many of them wonder if there are some intakes that they should avoid and some intakes that they should consider opting in.

In this article, we will look into the best and worst intake for studying in Australia as an international student.

We will also talk about some specific reasons for choosing the best and the worst intakes.

First, let’s understand the common intakes in Australia for international students.

Common University Intakes in Australia


Universities in Australia usually have three major intakes.

  • February
  • July
  • November

Please note that some universities might have a March intake instead of February and some of them might have an October or December intake instead of November.

So, keep that in mind that sometimes it may vary based on the university.

Common VET (Vocational Education) Intakes in Australia


Vocational Courses intake varies from one institution to another.

But to give you an idea, there could be 4 to 8 major intakes during the year.

Example of 4 intakes in VET courses during the year could be:

  • February
  • April
  • July and
  • September

Again, keep it mind, it varies based on one institution to the other.

Common English Courses Intakes in Australia


English courses could have multiple intakes during the academic year in Australia.

To study English courses in Australia, including ELICOS, you can enrol on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis.

It will depend upon the type of course you’re choosing and the college you choose to study English course.

Worst intake to come into Australia for studies


We are calling “November” intake (or October intake in some universities) as the worst intake to come into Australia for your studies.

Here are the specific reasons behind it:

Option to take time off during summer semester


November Semester is also known as the summer semester, where you have the option to take time off from your study.

In short, it means that you will have 3 to 4 months time off from your studies.

But if it is your first semester to study, then obviously you can’t choose that option.

Most of the students who start their studies in February and July intake usually plan to opt out of this semester. Here are some reasons for that:

Unlimited work hours for international students


During the study period where an international students course is in progress, they are not allowed to work more than 40 hours per fortnight.

However, International students are allowed to work full-time hours during the time their course isn’t in session.

And as you have an option to take time off during the November semester, many students look forward to those unlimited work hours during that specific time.

But, if you are coming in November intake, then you don’t have that option, and you will still have to abide by the 40 hours per fortnight work limit.

At the moment, until further notice, Australian government has lifted those work restrictions. So students can work unlimited hours even during their studies is in session.

Summer time in Australia


There is a reason why they call the November semester a “Summer semester”.

You guessed it right! Because it is summer time here in Australia.

It goes without saying that Australia has some of the best beaches in the world and the best time to go to a beach is…… You guessed it right again. Summer!

Plus, there are so many other places and events that you could visit, attend and enjoy during that time of the year.

Coming in November intake means you could be missing out on all this fun.

Of course, you can still enjoy the summer here in Australia while studying, but it is not the same if you have a whole semester break and can go travelling and doing other activities without worrying about assignments and exams.

Plenty of jobs available during summer time


During summer, you can easily find some part-time work in the hospitality and event sector as there are many sporting events and other events that happen during summer.

While there might be plenty of job options that you could choose from during Christmas holidays and school holidays (falls inside the whole summer semester), most of these jobs will expect you to have some sort of full-time availability.

As employers look for people who they can roster for full-time hours, as it is the busiest time of the year for them.

And if you are coming as a international student in November intake, and you can only work 40 hours per fortnight, then that is a drawback for you.

Limited number of lectures or tutorial sessions


Many lecturers and tutors will be taking their time off during summer break.

It means, most likely, they won’t be working during the November semester.

Great for them, but not so much for you as an international student.

As there is a chance, you will have a limited number of lectures and tutorials offered during that term.

In February and July intakes, there are usually plenty of options available for lectures and tutorials to choose from. So, you can choose lectures and tutorials based on your work, lifestyle and family, etc.

Not having too many options to choose from in the November intake means you will be limited to what the university offers in that semester.

Fewer people on campus


Last but not the least!

During this November intake, there will be fewer people on campus.

Whether it is students, administration teams or lecturers, you will see that there will be less number of people on the campus

Orientation for the new students will not be as glamorous as you would expect in the February or July intake.

Support services will also be limited due to the limited number of people working in those services.

Best intake to come for studies in Australia


Now when it comes to the best intake, we are calling “July intake” as our pick for the best intake to come for your studies in Australia.

The main reason for choosing July intake over February intake is that after completing your July semester, many universities allow you to take time off during the summer break in November.

So, if you choose July intake, then you can opt out of the November semester and do all those things which we mentioned above. That will not be a possibility if you come in February intake as November is the only summer semester. So, you can’t choose to take time off in July intake if you started studying in February intake.

Very important: Before enrolling, please check with your university, if they allow you to choose a summer semester off after studying only one semester. Some universities may have a policy that you must study 2 semesters before getting a term off.

Hope you found this information useful.

If you’re coming to Australia for your studies, we recommend you to download our Free Overseas Students Guide here.