LLM Students In Australia

Your life as an LLM student in Australia will be a big change and it doesn't matter if you're travelling to
Australia or already live there and attending the Australian law school around the corner, an LLM in itself is a tough but exciting year of study.

Here is the low-down on how LLM students live and study in Australia. 

Postgraduate Student Lifestyle in Australia

International students, especially those from Northern Europe and the UK, can easily imagine that life as an LLM student in Australia will be a combination of study and surfing. The study involved in an LLM in Australia is just as intensive as in any other country, and the weather is not always blue sky and sunshine. If you are a domestic student, then you will probably be using some of your Fee Help loan allocation for your tuition fees and want to make every bit count. For international students you will have proven that you have access to $19,830 of available funds so you too will want to make the best of it. 

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Student Unions & Associations

Only around half of the universities in Australia have affiliated with the Australian National Union of Students. Participation in the NUS has declined in recent years as membership is no longer mandatory and many campuses now have non-affiliated student associations or student entities often owned by the university itself. All campuses have support systems that most international students would recognise such as religious chaplaincies, student representation, or government and student academic committees. 

Law Graduates From Non-Common Law Countries

Australia has a legal system based on Common Law, and if you are an international student coming from a country that does not have a Common Law system, you will find you may need to take a couple of extra courses to catch up to your fellow students. The University of New South Wales Sydney, for example, has specialised elective course known as 'Legal Writing in Context', which will guide students who need help with the Australian legal system. 

Why Do LLM Students Pick Australia?

Many international students pick an Australian university to study their LLM because of the access to a wide variety of LLM courses with an international element. If you wish to study Chinese Law, then Australia is an excellent choice, as it is if you wish to understand the legal issues surrounding trade in Asia. Those students from English speaking countries will find this easy access to academics that specialise in Asian Law particularly appealing. Students who have studied English Law will find transferring to Australia quite straightforward, as the two legal systems are very similar. 

International LLM Students With Dependents

The student visa subclass 500 allows international LLM students to apply to bring their dependents. If you are considering bringing a family member, then you should check out the range of scholarships and sponsorships available for international students. Do some research, as having dependents is not necessarily a barrier to studying an LLM in Australia. 

Law School Societies in Australia

All of the law schools in Australia have associated student law societies. The University of Melbourne has a number including the Melbourne China Law Society and the Public Interest Law Network. Other law schools have student law societies, such as Sydney University's Law Society, that are available for a range of services including support and academically enriching activities. 

Working Part-Time & Internships 

Many universities in Australia encourage internships and unpaid voluntary work. These are allowed with a student visa subclass 500, but if you think that it might breach the conditions of your visa take advice before committing to anything. Your student law society or university's students’ union will be able to help you. Many students work part-time either for extra funds or for the work experience and this should be carefully considered if you are also studying full time to ensure you are prioritising your coursework.

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