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Education System in Australia 

The Australian education system comprises of primary, secondary and tertiary education. 

School education (Primary and Secondary)

  • Primary school - Runs for seven or eight years, starting at Kindergarten/Preparatory through to Year 6 or 7.
  • Secondary school - Runs for three or four years, from Years 7 to 10 or 8 to 10.
  • Senior secondary school - Runs for two years, Years 11 and 12.


Tertiary education

Tertiary education includes both higher education (including universities) and vocational education and training (VET). It can also be provided by the higher education institutions such as Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutes and Registered Training Organisations (RTOs). 

Technical and Further Education (TAFE) :

TAFE institutes in Australia are government owned and have a long history of helping international students reach their career goals. International students attend TAFE institutes to complete courses that range from certificate to postgraduate level.

Why study in TAFE ?

  • improve your opportunities of being accepted into university study
  • gain practical, work-based skills to improve your employment prospects
  • You can take advantage of the wide variety of courses on offer
  • It can be use as a pathway to university program

A list of TAFE institutes can be found here 

Vocational education and training (VET) :

VET courses are offered by Registered Training Organisations (RTOs). These can include Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutes and private colleges. These organisations are all registered by each Australian state or territory authority to:

  • provide quality training
  • deliver courses developed with industry
  • issue a nationally recognised qualification. 


Universities :

University offers Bachelor , Master and PhD programmes . Ordinary bachelor degree is of 3 years and an honours bachelor degree is of 4 years in duration. Master degree can be of 1, 1.5 and 2 years . PhD degree can be of 2 years and 4 years. A list of Australian University can be found here .

AQF : The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) is a system which made it possible for people to access university degrees through their vocational qualifications.Below table describe how students can switch from one institute to another.