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Adelaide has the best of both worlds: it offers all the
conveniences and excitement of a large city, but with a slower
pace and a more relaxed lifestyle.
Victoria Square, Adelaide. Photographer: Brett Sheridan
Courtesy of South Australian Tourism Commission
In addition to South Australia’s public universities, there are a
number of private providers offering higher education in and
around Adelaide. There are also campuses further afield at
Whyalla on the upper Spencer Gulf and Mt Gambier, SA’s second
What does South Australia have to offer?
Where can you study?
Number of universities: 3
Other higher education providers: 8
South Australia’s student population is around 83,000. Of these,
around ten per cent of domestic students are from interstate and
29 per cent are international students (DIICCSRTE, 2011).
Your study options
Undergraduate degrees are available in all the main general
disciplines (humanities and science, for example) and the
professions, including dentistry, law, medicine and engineering.
There is plenty more on offer in niche fields too. You could
find yourself studying wine marketing, hospitality, acupuncture,
theology or forensic chemistry. As you might expect from the
home state of the renowned WOMAD (World of Music, Art and
Dance) festival, South Australia also claims a strong history in
South Australia is as famous for its festivals, food and wine as it is
for the stunning desert and beach locales, all in easy reach of
Adelaide. Known as the city of churches, Adelaide is the capital
and cultural heart of South Australia. It boasts elegant colonial
architecture, beautiful parks and gardens, museums, pubs,
restaurants and numerous world-class arts, music, wine and food
festivals throughout the year.
For students, Adelaide is big enough to offer all the
essentials of a large city, but small enough to be less hectic and
overwhelming than Sydney or Melbourne. There is plenty for
students to see and do, whether they attend a campus in
Adelaide or elsewhere in South Australia, and enjoying a lot of it
won’t break the bank either — South Australia is one of the
cheaper states. Close to the city, students can spend their time in
leafy inner suburbs or enjoy some fun in the sun at the gorgeous
beachside suburb of Glenelg. Further out, the gourmet food and
wine capital of the Barossa Valley, the natural wonders of
Kangaroo Island, the laid-back Fleurieu Peninsula, the
fascinating underground opal mining town of Coober Pedy and
the rugged beauty of the Flinders Ranges are just a few of the
South Australians love their AFL, so you’ll be sure to meet
some locals cheering on either of the South Australian teams, the
Adelaide Crows or Port Adelaide.
Living in South Australia
The median weekly rental price for a house in Adelaide is
$340, while the median weekly rental price for a unit is
$275. In comparison, the median weekly rental cost of a
house in Sydney is around $500 and in Melbourne is around
The student rental market is very competitive. Visit your
institution’s housing service for referrals or advice.
Note: figures presented here are intended as a guide only. Prices
vary within and between suburbs and towns. Source: Australian
Property Monitors, December 2012.
You can get around Adelaide by tram, train or bus. Full-time
tertiary students receive a concession fare. Single and daily
tickets are available, as well as the rechargeable electronic
Bikes are also a popular option for students who live close
to the city. Public transport in the outer suburbs and regional
centres may be more limited, so access to a car or other
form of public transport may be necessary.
The climate in Adelaide ensures hot summers and cool to
mild winters. The average maximum temperature in January
is 29°C, while the average drops to around 16°C in the
winter months. Away from the coast, the temperature soars
(expect averages in the mid-30s) and there is little rainfall.
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