USA vs Australia: Which is Better for Indian Students?

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Beyond the charm of sightseeing and beaches, the USA vs Australia have become powerhouses for international students, especially those from India.  While both countries offer incredible travel experiences, they also boast world-class universities that attract ambitious Indian minds seeking to elevate their academic journeys. 

When it comes to the comparison between the USA vs Australia for higher education, both countries rank among the top destinations that come to the minds of Indian students. But what makes these countries so popular? 

According to US Consulate officials, over a million international students enrolled at US higher education institutions in the academic year 2022/23, out of which 268,923 students were from India

Meanwhile, in Australia, India continues to be the second-largest source country for international student enrolments, with a total of 1,22,391 Indian students studying there

So, which country is better for Indian students? Let’s explore and find out.

Key Highlights:

Top Universities In USAMassachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Stanford University
Harvard University
Top Universities in AustraliaThe University of Melbourne
The University of New South Wales (UNSW Sydney)
The University of Sydney
Top Cities in the USA-California
-Texas
-Chicago
Top Cities in Australia-Melbourne
-Sydney
-Brisbane
Average Tuition fees in the USAINR 25L to INR 1Cr
Average Tuition Fees in AustraliaINR 15L to INR 40L
Top Courses in the USA-Business Analytics
-Science Machine Learning
-Medicine
Top Courses in Australia-Computer Science Engineering
-Cybersecurity
-Automotive
Scholarships in the USA-Fulbright Scholarship
-Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarships
-Tata Scholarships
Scholarships in Australia-Australian Leadership Awards
-South Asia Excellence Scholarship
-Monash International Scholarship For Excellence
Average cost of living in the USAINR 98,000 ($ 1,172) per month
Average cost of living in AustraliaINR 93,000 (AUD 1,723) per month
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Top Universities USA vs Australia

When it comes to top universities, the USA vs Australia boast some of the best in the world. 

The USA has over 5,300 universities, out of which 10 universities rank among the top 20 universities in the world.

On the other hand, Australia is home to 42 universities, with 37 public Australian, three private Australian, and two private international universities. Among these, 3 universities in Australia rank among the top 20 universities in the world.

Here is a table highlighting the top 10 universities in the USA vs Australia, along with their average tuition fees:

Top Universities In The USAAvg UG Tuition FeeAvg PG Tuition Fee 
Harvard UniversityINR 40L- INR 45LINR 16L- 62L
Stanford UniversityINR 45L – INR 52LINR 42L- INR 45L
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)INR 50LINR 25L
University of California, BerkeleyINR 44LINR 30.6L
University of San FranciscoINR 60L-70LINR 21.5- INR 43L
University of Pennsylvania INR 74LINR 22.5L- INR 29L
University of Illinois Urbana-ChampaignINR 31L- INR 39LINR 20.4L- INR 41L
Johns Hopkins UniversityINR 71.7LINR 39L
University of WashingtonINR 72.6LINR 67.8L
California Institute of Technology (Caltech)INR 45L -INR 50LINR 72.4L
Note: The fees mentioned in the table are approximate and may vary by course and currency exchange rate.

Here is the list of Some of the top universities in Australia for Indian students are:

Name of the UniversityAverage UG Tuition FeeAverage PG Tuition Fee 
The University of MelbourneINR 22LINR 25L
The University of New South Wales (UNSW Sydney)INR 17LINR 28L
The University of SydneyINR 16LINR 20L
Australian National University (ANU)INR 20LINR 25L
Monash UniversityINR 19LINR 21L
The University of QueenslandINR 23LINR 26L
The University of Western AustraliaINR 30LINR 28L
The University of AdelaideINR 25LINR 24L
The University of Technology SydneyINR 28LINR 30L
RMIT UniversityINR 22LINR 20L

Top Courses USA vs Australia

For pursuing higher education, choosing the right course is essential. Both the USA and Australia offer a wide range of courses across various fields, making it challenging to decide. 

However, we’ve listed the top 10 courses in the USA vs Australia to help you make an informed decision. Whether you’re interested in pursuing a degree in Engineering, Business, or Arts, this list has got you covered. Take a look at the table below to know more.

Here is the list of the top 10 Courses in the USA vs Australia:

Top Courses in AustraliaTop Courses in the USA
NursingCommunication & Media Studies
Computer Science EngineeringBusiness Administration
CybersecurityComputer Science
AutomotiveEngineering
ArchitectureData Science & Analytics
Bachelors in accountingPublic Policy
PsychologyMarketing
SociologyPublic Policy
Agriculture ScienceHealthcare Management
Tourism and Hospitality ManagementFinance

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USA vs Australia: Which is Better for Indian Students?
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Eligibility Requirements for USA vs Australia

Before you apply to study in the USA or Australia, it’s important to understand the eligibility requirements. The requirements for both countries may vary depending on the university and course you choose. 

However, some common eligibility criteria that you need to meet to be considered for admission are: 

1. Academic Qualifications: You must have completed a secondary education equivalent to the USA high school diploma or Australia’s year 12 qualification. 

2. English Language Proficiency: You must demonstrate your English language proficiency by taking tests such as TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE

3. Standardised Tests: Some universities may require you to take standardised tests such as SAT, ACT, GRE, or GMAT

4. Financial Stability: You must show that you have sufficient funds to cover your tuition fees and living expenses in the USA or Australia. 

Here is a table comparing the eligibility requirements for studying in the USA vs Australia:

Eligibility Requirements in AustraliaEligibility Requirements in the USA
– Completed secondary education or equivalent.
– Meet the minimum English language proficiency requirement, with a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 or equivalent.
– Standardised test scores are not required for most undergraduate programs, but GRE/GMAT may be required for some graduate programs.
– Completed secondary education or equivalent.
– Meet the minimum English language proficiency requirement, with a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 or equivalent.
– Standardised test scores such as SAT, ACT, GRE, or GMAT may be required depending on the program and university.

Documents Required to study in the USA vs Australia:

Documents required in the USADocuments required in Australia
-Passport
-I-20 Form
SOP
LOR
-Visa
IELTS/TOEFL Test Score
-Academic Transcripts
CV
-Passport-Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment
-Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) Statement
-Financial Documents
SOP
LOR
-Visa
IELTS/TOEFL Test Score
-Academic Transcripts
-Health Insurance
CV

Cost of Living: USA vs Australia

The cost of living in the USA vs Australia is known to be on the higher side compared to other countries. However, the cost of living in these countries may vary depending on the location and lifestyle choices. 

On average, the cost of living in the USA is slightly higher than in Australia. In the USA, the average cost of living for a student is around  INR 98,000 ($ 1,172) per month, while in Australia, the cost is around INR 93,000 (AUD 1,723) per month. This includes accommodation, food, transportation, and other expenses.

 Here is a table highlighting the average cost of living in the USA vs Australia: 

CostsAvg Cost in AustraliaAvg Cost in the USA
Mobile PhoneINR 2,300 (AUD 43)INR 4,300 ($ 52)
InternetINR 4,500 (AUD 85)INR 5,930 ($ 71)
Transportation Monthly PassINR 9,000 (AUD 170.65)INR 6,000 ($ 72)
Basic UtilitiesINR 18,000 (AUD 334)INR 17,200 ($ 206)
Rant in City CentreINR 1.27L (AUD 2,377)INR 1.5L ($ 1775)
Sourced By: Numbeo
Note: All the costs mentioned in the table are approximate and may vary by location, lifestyle and currency exchange rates.

Also Read: Cost of Living in Australia

Scholarships in the USA vs Australia for Indian students

As an Indian student, pursuing higher education in the USA or Australia can be a significant investment. However, there are numerous scholarships available to help you offset the cost of tuition fees, accommodation, and living expenses. 

It’s essential to research the scholarship options available in both countries and identify the ones that best suit your academic and financial needs. Studying abroad can be an expensive dream, but scholarships can help bridge the financial gap. 

Here is a table of scholarships available for Indian students in the USA vs Australia:

Top Scholarships in AustraliaTop Scholarships in the USA
Australian Leadership AwardsFulbright Scholarship
South Asia Excellence ScholarshipInlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarships
Monash International Scholarship For ExcellenceTata Scholarships
International Postgraduate Research ScholarshipStanford University Scholarship
Sydney Scholars India ScholarshipAga Khan Foundation International Scholarship

Want to know more about the scholarships in the USA or Scholarships in Australia?

Average Salaries in USA vs Australia

The battle for post-graduation paychecks heats up when comparing the USA vs Australia. While both countries offer promising career prospects for Indian students, the USA generally offers slightly higher average salaries. 

According to Numbeo, the national average salary in the USA is around INR 3.8L ($ 4570) per month, while in Australia, it’s around INR 2.8L (AUD 5,386) per month. However, it’s important to note that the cost of living in the USA is relatively higher than in Australia. 

Here is a table that highlights the top 10 professions and their average salaries in both countries:

JobsAvg salary in AustraliaAvg salary in the USA
TeacherINR 50.8L (AUD 94,750)INR 35L ($41,923)
AccountantINR 48L (AUD 90,000)INR 73.3L ($87,851)
Data AnalystINR 50L (AUD 92,500)INR 75L ($ 89,903)
Marketing ManagerINR 96L (AUD 1,79,000)INR 90L ($ 1,07,948)
Civil EngineerINR 61L (AUD 1,13,949)INR 92L ($ 1,10,361)
PharmacistINR 58L (AUD 107,816)INR 1.1Cr ($ 1,32,520)
Software EngineerINR 64.3L (AUD 1,20,000)INR 1.2Cr ($ 1,43,736)
LawyerINR 62.6L (AUD 1,16,828)INR 1.4Cr ($ 1,69,848)
PilotINR 1.7Cr (AUD 3,16,476)INR 2Cr ($ 2,49,325)
DoctorINR 53.6L (AUD 1,00,000)INR 2.2Cr ($ 2,64,068)
Sourced By: Glassdoor
Note: The salaries mentioned in the table are approximate and may vary on the basis of location, employer and experience.

Visa Requirements in USA vs Australia

Visa requirements are an essential aspect to consider when planning to study abroad. Both the USA vs Australia have distinct visa requirements for international students. 

In the USA, international students need to apply for a student visa (F-1) to study in the country. On the other hand, in Australia, international students need to apply for a student visa (subclass 500) to study in the country.

Here is a table of detailed information regarding the Visa process in the USA vs Australia

ParametresAustraliaUSA
VisaSubclass 500F-1 Student Visa 
CostINR 38,000 (AUD 710)INR 13,363 ($ 160) 
Processing Time1 – 11 months10 days – 1 year
Documents Required-Identity Proof
-Passport Copy
-English language Score
-Confirmation of Enrollment (CoE)
-Proof of financial funds
-Health insurance
-Genuine Temporary Entrant document
-Passport-size photographs
-Passport-Transcripts
-English language proficiency test scores
-Standardised Test Scores
-Fee receipt
-Financial documents

PR in the USA vs Australia

Permanent Residence (PR) is a legal status that allows foreign nationals to live and work in a country permanently. It is a popular option for those who wish to settle down in a new country and enjoy the benefits of citizenship. 

The process of obtaining PR status varies from country to country, and both the USA vs Australia have their unique ways of approaching it.

In the USA, the process of obtaining PR status is known as a Green Card. It involves applying to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and demonstrating that you are eligible for permanent residency. 

The eligibility criteria include factors such as:

  • Employment for at least 5 years
  • Family ties
  • Investment.

The process can take anywhere from several months to several years, depending on the complexity of the case. The USA has a reputation for having a long and bureaucratic process for obtaining PR status.

In Australia, the process of obtaining PR status is known as a Permanent Residency Visa. It involves applying to the Department of Home Affairs and demonstrating that you are eligible for permanent residency. 

To be eligible for a Permanent Residency Visa in Australia, you need to meet the point requirements. The minimum point required to apply for PR is 65. However, having a score of 85 or above will increase your chances of obtaining PR, making the process smoother and easier.

The eligibility criteria include factors such as:

  • Age
  • language proficiency
  • Education
  • Work experience.

The process can take anywhere from a few months to several years, depending on the complexity of the case. Australia is known to have a more straightforward and streamlined process for obtaining PR status.

Final Thoughts

The USA vs Australia offer excellent opportunities for international students pursuing higher education and building a bright future for themselves. With their world-class universities, diverse cultures, and job opportunities, these countries have become top destinations for students worldwide. 

However, navigating through the entire process of studying abroad can be overwhelming and confusing, especially when it comes to IELTS preparation, visa, and other documents. 

That’s where LeapScholar comes in. We can help you make informed decisions and achieve your dream of studying in the USA or Australia by providing expert guidance and assistance. 

So, if you’re an aspiring student looking to study abroad, don’t hesitate to contact Leap Scholar for our services. Unlock your potential and pave the way for a successful career by studying in the USA or Australia with Leap Scholar’s guidance.

And if you’re considering other options like the UK and Canada, we’ve got you covered, too. Schedule a free consultation with our experts today for personalised guidance and advice.

Don’t miss this opportunity to work and study in one of the most beautiful and prosperous countries in the world. Start your journey today!

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q. Which is better Australia or USA for study abroad?

    A. Both Australia and the USA offer excellent opportunities for international students. It depends on personal preferences, budget, and career goals. Australia provides a more affordable cost of living and a more relaxed study environment, while the USA offers a wide range of top-ranked universities and job opportunities.

  • Q. Which country has better jobs the USA vs Australia for international students?

    A. Both countries have excellent job opportunities for international students. The USA may offer more job options due to its vast economy, but Australia offers a more balanced work-life culture and relaxed visa policies.

  • Q. Why you choose Australia to study abroad?

    A. Students choose Australia to study abroad due to its excellent education system, affordable tuition fees, diverse culture, and relaxed study environment. Moreover, Australia offers post-study work opportunities, making it easier for students to gain work experience and settle down in the country.

  • Q. Is Australia good for Indian students?

    A. Yes, Australia is an excellent study destination for Indian students. It offers world-class education, a multicultural environment, and a comparatively affordable cost of living. Moreover, Indian students can easily adapt to the Australian lifestyle as English is the primary language of instruction.

  • Q. Is it expensive to study in the USA vs Australia?

    A. Both countries have different costs of living and tuition fees. Generally, it is more expensive to study in the USA than in Australia. The USA offers higher tuition fees and a higher cost of living, while Australia has comparatively lower tuition fees and a more affordable cost of living.

  • Q. Is IELTS required to study in the USA vs Australia?

    A. Yes, international students need to demonstrate their English language proficiency to study in both the USA vs Australia. In the USA, students need to take the TOEFL or IELTS exam, while in Australia, students can take the IELTS, TOEFL, or PTE exams.

  • Q. Which country weather conditions are better in the USA vs Australia?

    A. Both countries have diverse weather conditions due to their vast territories. The USA has a varied climate with extreme winters and summers, while Australia has a warmer climate with mild winters and hot summers.

  • Q. Which country has better Universities, the USA vs Australia?

    A. Both countries have excellent universities. The USA has more top-ranked universities, while Australia offers a more balanced education system with universities that focus on research and practical skills.

  • Q. What are the most popular courses for Indian students in the USA vs Australia?

    A. Indian students prefer courses in fields such as engineering, computer science, business, and healthcare. Both the USA vs Australia offer excellent opportunities in these fields, with the USA having a more significant focus on research and innovation.

  • Q. Which country offers more scholarships to international students, the USA vs Australia?

    A. Both the USA vs Australia offer scholarships to international students. However, the USA has a higher number of scholarship opportunities available for international students, including Indian students. It is essential to research and apply for scholarships well in advance to increase your chances of obtaining financial aid.

  • Q. Which country, the USA vs Australia, has a better PR process for Indian students?

    A. Both the USA vs Australia have a well-established Permanent Residency (PR) process for international students. However, the process may differ based on individual circumstances. Generally, Australia has a more straightforward and streamlined PR process, which may be more accessible for international students, including Indians. 


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Saket Kohli

An International Higher Ed professional with 7+ years of experience studying, working, and living across three geographies, currently on a mission to share his journey as an International Student.

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