Types of study

Choose a course to suit you

Learn more about the types of study available in New South Wales, English Language courses, VET, universities, scholarships, schools, study tours and exchange programs.

Higher Education


Sydney and New South Wales are home to 11 world-class universities, including six in the Sydney metropolitan area and five regional universities.

Two of our universities ranked in the Times Top 100 in the world in 2017. The University of Sydney is ranked 60th and the University of New South Wales is ranked 78th.

Four more of our universities are ranked in the Times Top 150 under 50 years old in 2017. These include the University of Technology Sydney (ranked 15th), the University of Wollongong (ranked 30th), Western Sydney University (ranked 79th) and Southern Cross University (ranked 94th).

The universities in Sydney and NSW are dynamic centres of learning excellence, home to world-leading research and globally recognised qualifications for graduates that are sought after by employers around the globe.

Our universities work closely with local and global business and industry, providing an extensive network of employment opportunities, as well as access to innovators and thought leaders in areas such as technology, finance and the arts.

View a list of Australian universities

Higher Education Providers

NSW gives you access to a wide array of registered, government accredited private higher education providers, which offer high quality learning experiences in areas as diverse as hospitality, health, business, creative media and the arts.

Private higher education providers offer access to many niche specialist and applied skills courses often not offered by universities. They are known for providing supportive learning structures and innovative and flexible teaching models, allowing you to choose how, when, and where you study. Private higher education providers have strong links with industry and courses tailored to meet the needs of future employers, ensuring graduates emerge job-ready.

NSW TAFE also offers degree-level education opportunities, in vital areas such as childcare, applied finance and information technology.

NSW Research Strengths

The NSW Government has launched a new geospatial database showcasing the state's higher education. research & development capabilities.

The NSW Research Map is a virtual 'one-stop shop' for information about more than 650 organisations and pieces of critical Research & Development (R&D) infrastructure across NSW.

Start searching using the map

Vocational Education and Training (VET)

Sydney and New South Wales are home to a vast network of Vocational Education and Training (VET) opportunities.

VET provides skills and qualifications for all types of employment and there are thousands of courses offered by both public and private providers in careers and industries as diverse as;

  • Arts
  • Media and Entertainment
  • Business and Commerce
  • Childcare
  • Hospitality
  • Graphic Design
  • Fitness
  • Information Technology
  • Manufacturing and Engineering
  • Tourism and Events


TAFE NSW is Australia’s largest public provider of vocational education and training. TAFE NSW offers more than 1,200 vocational courses including short courses, certificate to Diploma and Advanced Diplomas and degree level programs. It provides the hands-on skills employers need, in the way students want.

Learning at TAFE NSW gives you access to practical training through a mix of state-of the-art campuses and specialist facilities across the state as well as on-the-job, mobile and online training. Statewide industry connections and industry-leading teachers ensure the quality of teaching at TAFE NSW. Students are provided with a broad range of support services to assist with their learning and to help them become job-ready.

Search for a course at TAFE NSW

Private Training Providers

Over 60 per cent of VET students in NSW study with a private college to gain an accredited qualification. Private colleges typically work very closely with employers and industry, to understand the ‘real world’ work-place skills they need employees to have. These relationships often provide employment pathways as well. It is possible to continue study to bachelor and postgraduate level at private colleges.

Private colleges offer high levels of support and flexibility to meet student needs and are innovative with teaching and assessment practices.

Search for a private training provider

English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS)

ELICOS courses are specifically designed to help students learn English language skills as well as English required for further academic studies or work purposes.

If you want to improve your English or if you need a higher level of English to continue your education, you can choose an ELICOS course that is right for you. You will need to check the level of English required for entry into a Vocational Education and Training (VET), school or higher education course.

Sydney and NSW has a global reputation for providing some of the world’s best ELICOS courses, with a huge number of options for improving your language skills.

ELICOS providers range from government owned institutes, high schools and universities, through to privately-owned and fully-accredited providers.

There are a wide range of ELICOS courses to suit your specific need, with specialist course options available, including Business English, Academic English, General English, Examination Preparation and Secondary School Preparation.

ELICOS providers come in a range of sizes and focuses, from large international providers to smaller, boutique colleges.

Learning and improving your English in Sydney and NSW is an amazing learning experience, surrounded by native English speakers but with the support of knowing that Sydney is one of the most multi-cultural cities in the world.

For more information on finding the right ELICOS campus and course for you, visit englishaustralia.com.au

English Australia represents 120 member colleges throughout Australia that provide quality English language programs to students and professionals from around the world.

Find an English language college


Students in NSW have the choice of public or private schools. The main education provider is the NSW State Government; 2/3 of NSW primary and high schools are public schools.

Many schools in NSW offer a range of support programs, including welfare support, an international student coordinator and English as a Second Language support to students with language backgrounds other than English.

To enrol international students schools must be registered with the Commonwealth Register of Institutes and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS).

Government Schools

NSW government schools are mostly co-educational, comprehensive schools for students living in their local area. There are also single sex schools – boys or girls only and some specialist high schools.

The Department of Education International (DE International) provides choices for international students wishing to enrol in NSW government schools in Sydney or regional NSW. Most international students complete their secondary education and gain a NSW Higher School Certificate as a pathway to further study. The Study Abroad program offers international students a short term experience for a period of one term through to one year.

Find a NSW government school

Private Schools

Private schools, also known as non-government schools, are either schools that are part of the Catholic system or Independent schools that may be of a religious or non-religious background. Most are co-educational but there are also many single sex schools. Enrolment is usually through each individual school and the conditions for enrolment may vary depending on the school.

Find an independent school

Study in Australia:
find a course

Search for courses and institutions

Study Tours

Want to explore NSW? Study tours enable you to visit our well-equipped, beautiful educational institutions and discover the best location for you.

Find out more about school study tours

Exchange Programs

While you are studying in NSW you may be eligible for an exchange program with an overseas institution. Exchange programs offer a great way to learn about other cultures and develop new skills. Contact your educational institution for more information.

Study in Australia:
find a scholarship

Search for scholarships