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Sydney Direct Enrollment - University Of New South Wales

Why Sydney?

Take advantage of your chance to live and learn in one of the most beautiful and livable cities in the world—Sydney! Enjoy Sydney’s comfortable climate (warm summers and mild winters), world-renowned beaches (think: Bondi, Manly, and Coogee), and iconic spots around the city (the Rocks, Harbour Bridge, and the Royal Botanical Gardens). We want you to feel at home in Sydney, so we do everything we can to help you integrate into life in the city. From housing to cultural events, our job is to make sure you have the most authentic study abroad experience possible. 

What You'll Study

Our study abroad programs in Sydney offers you the opportunity to directly enroll in the prestigious University of New South Wales with access to a vast array of course offerings across hundreds of disciplines. You can also enroll in an internship, which includes time spent working at your placement in addition to an academic seminar that helps you contextualize what you're learning.

Daily Life

Sydney will also be your classroom. Enjoy the city’s robust music scene with a performance at the world-renowned Sydney Opera House. Visit one of the many museums, such as the Museum of Contemporary Art or the Art Gallery of New South Wales to see some of the country’s great works of art. Soak in the beauty of Sydney’s landscape by walking the path from Coogee to Bondi Beach—or, better yet, climb to the top of the  Harbour Bridge. Field trips to iconic destinations like the Blue Mountains, Royal National Park, and the Great Barrier Reef round our your study abroad experience.

$5 Million in Scholarships & Aid

We firmly believe that financial limitations should not prevent a qualified student from participating in an IES Abroad Program. This is why we commit $5 million to our scholarship and aid programs.


IES Abroad’s mission is simple: to provide you with the best study abroad program possible—which includes the highest quality academic and cultural experiences. That is why we partnered with the University of New South Wales.

The campus of UNSW is close to Coogee beach with easy access to the city center via public transportation. It offers easy access to the incredible natural beauty of Australia’s varied landscape and a wealth of cultural and social opportunities in Sydney.

University of New South Wales

With about 14,000 international students from 120+ countries enrolled per year, it’s easy to see how the University of New South Wales (UNSW) is historically committed to internationalism. You have access to an impressive range of academic options across many disciplines, as well as internship opportunities. Close to downtown Sydney, UNSW’s proximity to the beach connects you with the famous laid-back Aussie lifestyle.

Because UNSW has a large student community (its total student population is more than 53,000), the University works hard to provide many opportunities for you to get involved. UNSW is home to a thriving theatre and arts community. The student entertainment center, The Roundhouse, is the site of frequent concerts, movie screenings, and lawn entertainment.


Located on an attractive, self-contained campus near downtown Sydney, UNSW is an ideal destination if you want access to big-city culture while also being connected to Sydney’s beach lifestyle.


UNSW is one of Australia’s leading research and teaching universities, with students enrolled in more than 900 academic programs across nine faculties. Its impressive range of strong programs across the disciplines makes it possible for IES Abroad students of almost every academic background to actively pursue a challenging and stimulating experience at UNSW. The UNSW Business School has both AACSB and EQUIS accreditation. Most IES Abroad students take Level Two courses, which may require certain prerequisites.  Most courses are worth 6 UOC or 4 IES Abroad credits.

Fall 2018 students will carry a minimum of 24 Units of Credit (UOC) per semester, which is equivalent to 16 IES Abroad credits. You may not take more than 30 UOC (20 IES Abroad credits).

Starting Spring 2019, when the UNSW academic calendar shifts from semesters to terms, IES Abroad students will carry 18 Units of Credit (UOC) per term, which is equivalent to 12 IES Abroad credits). 

The disciplines listed below are open to IES Abroad students. You can access descriptions for all courses on UNSW's Study Abroad page. Click the "What You Can Study" tab and follow the links to UNSW's Online Handbook. Keep in mind that “courses” may refer to a course of study (ie. Bachelor of Arts in Psychology), and “units of study” may refer to specific classes.

Areas of Interest Disciplines

Arts & Social Sciences


• African Studies

• Americas Studies

• Arts

• Asian Studies

• Australian Studies

• Chinese Studies

• Communication & Journalism

• Creative Writing

• Criminology

• Dance

• Development Studies

• English & Literature

• Environmental Humanities

• European Studies

• Film Studies

• French Studies

• Greek Studies

• Hispanic Studies

• History

• Indonesian Studies

• International Relations

• International Studies

• Italian Studies

• Japanese Studies

• Korean Studies

• Linguistics

• Media Culture & Technology

• Media Production

• Music

• Philosophy

• Politics

• Public Relations & Advertising

• Screen & Sound

• Social Research & Policy

• Sociology & Anthropology

• Theatre & Performance Studies

• Women & Gender Studies

Commerce & Economics*

• Accounting

• Actuarial Sciences

• Banking & Finance

• Business Law & Taxation

• Economics

• Information Systems

• Management

• Marketing

• Tourism & Hospitality


• Aerospace

• Bioinformatics

• Biomedical

• Chemical

• Civil

• Computer Science

• Electrical

• Environmental

• Industrial Chemistry

• Manufacturing

• Manufacturing Management

• Mechatronics

• Mining

• Naval Architecture

• Petroleum

• Photonic

• Photovoltaics & Solar Energy

• Renewable Energy

• Science

• Software Surveying & Spatial Information Systems

• Telecommunications

Fine Arts

• Applied Arts

• Art Education

• Art History & Theory Design

• Digital Media

• Fine Arts

Law • Elective courses only (restricted to students

currently pursuing a Law-related degree)
Medical Sciences

• Anatomy

• Medicine

• Microbiology


• Aviation

• Biological Science


• Chemistry

• Food Science & Technology

• Genetics

• Geology

• Geography

• Geoscience

• Marine Science

• Materials Science

• Mathematics

• Nanotechnology

• Physics

• Psychology

• Safety Science

*EQUIS- and AACSB-accredited


Advising & Support

Even though you’re directly enrolling in one of our partner universities, we’re here for you whenever you need us.


Choosing and directly enrolling in courses abroad can be confusing and overwhelming. This is why we offer you predeparture advising that’s specific to your needs. Our goal is to provide support and guidance throughout your application and enrollment process.

But our advising services don’t stop there. While you’re in Sydney, our staff is available to help you transition into your new home.


The support services we offer IES Abroad direct enrollment students are specifically designed to help you achieve your study abroad goals as effectively and smoothly as possible. We know studying abroad is an adventure, and, at times, you may need help or just someone to talk to—that’s why our staff will be there for you.

On-Site Staff

Whether you have questions about academic requirements, housing, or well-being and safety, our Sydney-based IES Abroad staff is available to fully support you. Because of our close relationship with the universities in Sydney, IES Abroad is also able to offer you unique academic, social, and cultural opportunities. Our staff in Sydney will accompany you throughout orientation, as well as at the IES Abroad field trips and cultural events.



Interning while you study in Sydney gives you rewarding job experience with a wealth of long-lasting career benefits. You will:

  • Gain a better understanding of the real-life everyday culture of your host country.
  • Add global work experience and skills to your résumé or your application for graduate school.
  • Improve your confidence

The University of New South Wales offers academic internship placements to study abroad students majoring in Business or Media.  Only students who are majoring in these fields and have already completed a number of relevant courses are considered for placement.
You earn 6 UOC (4 IES Abroad credits) for serving in a workplace for a few days each week. An internship also includes additional academic contact hours with your supervisor, and assessment is based on workplace performance, a journal, a final research project, and an exit report. For more information, visit UNSW's Study Abroad Internship Program page.

Personalized Placements
Once you indicate your interest in an internship, UNSW staff will work with you to find the ideal internship placement that fulfills your academic and career goals. Students have been placed in a wide variety of organizations and businesses. If UNSW doesn't currently have the connections in your field of plcement, UNSW staff will search for a placement that's right for you.

Field Trips & Events

Even though your adventure starts in Sydney, our field trips take you beyond the city to discover the culture and traditions of your host country. Here are a few possible destinations:

Kakadu and Top End Tour

5 Days | Fall 2018 only

Take a mid-semester trip to Kakadu and the Top End, to see one of the world's best kept national parks. Spend time in Darwin, Australia's most Northern City before heading out to Kakadu National Park where we will discover magnificent landscapes, waterfalls, and rich Aboriginal culture. With everything from Jumping Crocodiles to discovering the beautiful Mindil Beach Markets, this subsidized trip (this trip is partially subsidized by IES Abroad; you are responsible for a portion of the costs) will show you a bit of Australia that is so unique and special, you will never forget.

Featherdale Wildlife & Blue Mountains

1 Day

Hike in the Blue Mountains and enjoy a visit to Featherdale Wildlife Park.

Royal National Park

1 Day

Explore the second-oldest national park in the world, full of fascinating plants, birds, and animals.

Daily Life

Part of making you feel at home in Sydney is doing our best to help you feel safe and cared for. Whether it is an orientation program that makes you feel prepared, housing that is well-located and comfortable, or the field trips that take you to exciting destinations—we’re all about our student services.


IES Abroad Orientation

Our orientation program is a dynamic, hands-on introduction to Australian culture and living in Sydney. Orientation includes sessions on academic transition, safety and security, and cultural adjustment.

Past highlights have included a boat cruise in Sydney Harbour. This is followed by a day-long hiking trip to the Blue Mountains, which have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. They are well-known for their canyons, rock formations, and rainforests, and for being home to Aboriginal communities.

Additionally, CORE™, IES Abroad’s Comprehensive Orientation & Re-entry Experience, begins during orientation and continues throughout the term with activities focusing on cultural adjustment, goal achievement, and preparing for the return home.

University Orientation

In addition to the IES Abroad orientation, you take part in the UNSW international student orientation. This program provides official academic orientation that further introduces you to the facilities at UNSW. You finalize your enrollments and also have the opportunity to discuss course offerings one-on-one with a university advisor.


We want to make sure that your greatest challenge is deciding which landmarks to see first or discovering the best café—not finding a place to live where you feel comfortable. We do our best to locate housing that is reflective of how the local students are living. Our goal is that when you leave Sydney, it will feel like home.

As part of IES Abroad’s direct enrollment services, we offer well-located, comfortable housing for all students because securing housing independently can be challenging. IES Abroad’s housing options reflect the local student culture and meet our safety and security standards.

Apartment Housing

University Terraces - the University Terraces are located on High Street, on the main campus, about a five-minute walk to the main courtyard and a two-minute walk to the sports center. Each apartment includes a kitchenette, shared bathroom, and a living area. All apartments are fully furnished, and you can cook in your apartment or go to a variety of restaurants and markets in the surrounding area. The Terraces were opened in 2013, and other amenities include recreation and group study rooms on each floor, an outdoor barbecue area, and coin-operated laundry. Space is very limited, and, if given space in the Terraces, you will likely have a single bedroom in a two-bedroom apartment with another student as your roommate. Apartments are typically mixed-gender unless otherwise requested. No meals are included. 

  University of New South Wales Village (UNSWV) – like the University Terraces, the University of New South Wales Village (UNSWV) is located on High Street, on the main campus, about a five-minute walk to the main courtyard and a two-minute walk to the sports center. Each apartment includes a full kitchen, shared bathrooms, and a living and dining area. All apartments are fully furnished, and you can cook in your apartment or go to a variety of restaurants and markets in the surrounding area. Other amenities include a café, TV room, game room, group and private study spaces, a theater, and card-operated laundry. Space is limited, and, if given a space in UNSWV, you will likely have a single room in a five- or six- bedroom apartment shared with international and Australian students.  Apartments are typically mixed-gender, unless otherwise requested. No meals are included.  

Extracurricular Activities & Cultural Events

Redefine the way you live and learn in Sydney through our cultural events, such as:

  • Taking surfing lessons
  • Enjoying a dinner cruise in Darling Harbour
  • Taking a field trip to the Royal National Park
  • Attending an Aussie Rules football game
  • Celebrating the semester with a farewell dinner in downtown Sydney

University Clubs & Events

While you’re in Sydney, be sure to join a social or sports club-they're a great way to meet local students. The University of New South Wales encourages active student involvement in university life through the Student Guild, the Student Union, the Sports Association, residential colleges, and independent academic faculties. With more than 250 university clubs and societies covering cultural, social, and sporting activities, you are sure to find a community at UNSW. You are strongly encouraged to take advantage of the many clubs and organizations as a way to meet Australian students.

IES Abroad suggests getting involved in university life through CASOC (Clubs and Societies on Campus) and the Sports Association.

Get to Know Your New City

Visit Barangaroo

Enjoy a meal by the waterfront in this unique inner-city suburb.

Try Sydney Desserts

From lamingtons to Tim Tam slams, there's bound to be a dessert you'll love. 

Stroll the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Capture magnificant views of the Opera House and Circular Quay. 

Walk from Bondi to Coogee

Prepare for stunning views, beaches, parks, and cliffs on this 6 km (3.37 miles) coastal walk in Sydney's eastern suburbs.

Watch a Show at the Opera House

Treat yourself to one of many spectacular performances at Sydney's most iconic venue. 

Program Cost

Consider these prices as a starting point. We encourage you to contact your study abroad office to determine the actual cost to you when factoring in financial aid, scholarships, your home school policies, and other factors.

Term: Fall 2019
Term Tuition Housing Insurance Total
Fall 2019
Academic Year
Term: Spring 2019
Term Tuition Housing Insurance Total
Spring 2019 $13,625 $4,800 $475 $18,900

Scholarships & Aid

Program-Specific Scholarships

Robert McNeill Need-Based International Business Scholarship
Ranges up to $3,000

This scholarship is named in honor of Robert McNeill, member of the IES Abroad Board of Directors for 25 years (6 years as Chairman). Open to students who have an interest in international business. Majors might include management, marketing, economics, finance, international relations, and social and behavioral sciences.

Dr. William Louis Gaines Need-Based History or International Relations Scholarship
Ranges up to $1,875

This scholarship is named in honor of Dr. William Louis Gaines, President of IES Abroad from 1974-1992. Dr. Gaines was dedicated to strengthening IES Abroad's academic framework, broadening the scope of IES Abroad locations, and securing the financial foundation of the organization.

Open to students majoring in History or International Relations.

Adelyn Dougherty Leander Need-Based Urban Issues Scholarship
Ranges up to $3,000

Open to students who have an interest in urban studies (a major in urban studies is not required).

Study Abroad Scholarship for Future Engineers
Up to $5,000

The Study Abroad Scholarship for Future Engineers was established by an anonymous donor to encourage more engineering students to have the enriching, life changing experience of study abroad.

Use our budget worksheet to calculate your costs

$5 Million in Scholarships & Aid

We firmly believe that financial limitations should not prevent a qualified student from participating in an IES Abroad Program. This is why we commit $5 million to our scholarship and aid programs.

Our Center

The IES Abroad office is located in Surry Hills, an inner suburb within the city of Sydney.  It is immediately adjacent to the city center, known as the Central Business District, or CBD.  Just a few blocks from Sydney’s central rail station, it is well connected to the rest of the city and surrounding areas. Commuting time, by bus, to the University of Sydney campus is 15 minutes and to the UNSW campus 20 minutes. The Macquarie campus is 45-55 minutes away by public transportation.

Our Staff

Chris McKenna

Center Director (Interim)

Chris has worked in the international education sector for almost 20 years and joined our partner, the University of New South Wales in Sydney, in 2006. He held a number of positions at UNSW before being appointed as Director, International Affairs, in May 2016. In this role, he provided support, counsel and advice to the Pro Vice-Chancellor International. Prior to UNSW, Chris was a Senior Project Manager at JWT Education, one of the world's largest communications agencies that provides market research, consulting, branding and communications services to clients in the education sector. In this role, Chris worked on various research projects with a number of Australian universities, government education departments worldwide and organizations such as the British Council. Before moving to Australia Chris lived in Tokyo for two years. He holds an M.A. from the University of Glasgow.

IES Abroad Staff

Kate Smart (Center Director - on extended leave until May 2019)

Kate Smart has been the Director of the Sydney programs since 2016. Kate has over 15 years of experience in International Education, including senior Study Abroad roles at Macquarie University, the University of Sydney, and University of New South Wales.

Kate has lived and worked in the United States and studied abroad in Thailand and Jamaica. She has a Master of Arts in International Studies from the University of Technology, Sydney, and a Master of Education in International Education from Monash University. Kate loves sharing her knowledge of the city (and the rest of Australia) with new students, from her favorite beaches to swim at to the best place to grab a great flat white.


Sian Viney - Internship and Student Services Coordinator

Helen O'Riordan - Program Coordinator