Part-Time Study In Australia: The Pros And Cons

An international student wants to know the advantages and disadvantages of studying part-time and full-time courses in Australia, including the benefits of being a part-time student.


Without a doubt, studying abroad in Australia is one of the best decisions you will ever make. However, when it comes to searching for a study program that suits your circumstances, you need to consider several factors to make the right decision.

Some of the factors that you should focus on includes the type of career you are looking for, whether you need some free-time or want to spend more time at the university, your chances of getting a job, and more.

It is also important to note that part-time study may even come with a few challenges. So before making any decision, read this post to weigh the pros and cons of taking up part-time study in Australia.


1. What is Part-time Study?


Part-time study spreads a full-time course for a more extended time period. When compared to a full-time, part-time study requires fewer hours per week.


It is suitable for people who want to balance study with their work or personal life. Also, part-time courses can turn out to be useful if you want to improve or change your career path.

For international students who are on a student visa, part-time study is not an option as the visa requires them to get the 24 credit points per semester, which is only possible with full-time study.


2. What Does Part-time Study Involve?

Part-time courses mostly requires students to attend evening or afternoon classes each week and is specially tailored for those students who want to work full-time or part-time jobs while studying. 

Some Australian universities have taken things a step ahead by providing a few postgraduate courses through e-learning or distance learning, which allows students to attend classes from home without going to the university. Instead, they receive all the teaching, learning, and tuition services from the internet.

Studying Masters programs or postgraduate diplomas through part-time study may take around two to three years to complete. You can also do part-time MPhil courses, which will take about four to five years to complete and part-time PhDs, taking up to six years.

Students who are pursuing a part-time PhD degree might have to juggle between their research work and teaching fellowship. Besides, you can also go for a professional doctorate that allows you to choose a professional career instead of an academic career.


Mostly, students who are already pursuing a career take up a professional doctorate course.


3. Why Study Part-Time?


If you think that you do not have the resources or time to study full-time, then the part-time study is the best option for you. You can also take up a part-time course to move ahead in your career, personal development, or simply because you would like to explore a subject.


All in all, part-time study is a great way to continue learning while building your career at the same time.


4. What is the Difference Between Full-time and Part-time Study?

The major difference between full-time and part-time study is the number of credit hours in a semester. Generally, part-time courses have a minimum of 6 to 11 credits, which means two to three classes per week. Whereas, a full-time course has a minimum of 12 credits or about four classes.


Therefore, a part-time student spends less time in class than a full-time university student during a semester.


5. Pros of Part-time Study


  • Lifestyle: Combining employment and part-time study, along with some free time, can bring significant changes to your lifestyle. You will have less academic work, and your routine won’t be as hectic as a full-time student’s university routine. This will leave you with more flexibility to do whatever you desire. 


  • Money: It is one of the biggest factors that most students consider when taking up a part-time course as it gives them the ability to work more frequently and earn more money. On the other hand, earning money is a massive issue for full-time students because they often have to work on weekends and do night shifts to fit in with the busy schedule. 


  • No Break from Your Career: Studying part-time means that you do not have to take a break from your professional career. Additionally, it offers you a bonus of not relocating for study purposes, especially if you are studying through distance learning. Overall, doing part-time study helps avoid university life and enables you to entirely focus on the professional world.  


  • Variety: There are a variety of people who take-up part-time study. They could be a young professional trying to raise a family, a middle-aged person who is already pursuing a well-established career, or a school drop out who is working casual shifts at a restaurant.


  • No Higher Qualifications Required: For some part-time courses, you do not require a higher level of qualification, which means you can easily enrol into part-time courses. Also, it gives you more time to study and get a qualification without facing any troubles.


  • Support: When pursuing part-time study, tutors and lecturers will continuously support you and give you more advice on how to approach the course in the best way possible. Furthermore, having to deal with less workload will offer you more time to clarify all your problems and seek out assistance from the teaching staff.



6. Cons of Part-time Study


  • Balance: Dealing with part-time study, along with work, family, and other responsibilities can sometimes be hard to handle. This can further result in poor time management due to which you may fail to meet your course requirements. 


  • Duration: Part-time courses take a long time to complete, which may add extra pressure to your current work situation. Also, it can get extremely frustrating when you see other students graduating, and you are still working and studying part-time at the university.  


  • Availability: Some of the educational institutions in Australia do not provide part-time study courses. So it is always better to conduct thorough research before choosing a university.


  • Lower Success Rate: For part-time students, the success rate is lower compared to full-time students. Many part-time PhD students do not even make it to the end and finish their course.


  • Stress: Due to the added pressure of meeting deadlines, passing exams, and completing assignments, part-time students end up being stressed. So do not think that if you are a part-time student, you can get away with university life. 


  • University Experience: Being a part-time student means you won’t get to experience university life. Also, you won’t get to know your fellow students and be friends with them.


7. Final Words 
It is definitely not easy to be a part-time student as it takes plenty of commitment, time management skills, and determination. Even though part-time courses allow more flexibility and are less overwhelming, you still have to meet deadlines.


Therefore, weigh the pros and cons of students working part-time and see what suits your needs.

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