Australia Study Abroad Program at Southern Cross University
About Southern Cross University in Lismore, Australia
- Required GPA: 2.5 (4.0 scale)
- Application deadlines: November 15 for semester 1 (Feb-June)
November 15 for calendar year (Feb-Oct)
March 15 for semester 2 (June-Oct)
March 15 for academic year (June-June)
- Program advisor: Laura Wallman
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We're so excited that you're considering IFSA-Butler's program at Southern Cross University for your semester or year abroad. Southern Cross University is located in Lismore, one of New South Wales' unique and most alternative cities! We're sure you're going to love studying there!
There are a few specific forms for this program that you will need to complete along with your IFSA-Butler application. You can find the forms under the Forms tab.
What SCU has to offer
- A smaller university in a smaller city for a more individual and authentic experience
- A unique location between an extraordinary coastline and intriguing rainforests, with six national parks nearby
- Academic programs that take advantage of the natural setting
- Modern facilities and innovative programs with many opportunities for field trips
- A wide variety of sporting, cultural and special interest clubs sponsored by the university union
- Volunteer opportunities at an on-campus koala rescue hospital
- Choose one of four free excursions organized by the university's International Office
- Housing is with SCU students in student residences with fully equipped study centers within walking distance of campus
- Students purchase or prepare their own meals
- Past students recommend the Outdoor Education course, which develops students' stamina, survival skills and interpersonal skills
- Perspectives on Australia is another popular course that allows students to volunteer in local communities
- Students take four courses per semester
We look forward to working with you!
CoursesWhere can I find a list of courses that the university offers?
- Open Southern Cross University's online course catalog.
- Use the search tools to locate courses. You can search alphabetically, by school (department) and by term.
What courses am I eligible to take?
As an IFSA-Butler student, you are entitled to enroll in undergraduate courses for which you are qualified and in which space is available. Course descriptions in the online course catalog (see above) include prerequisites you must fulfill in order to enroll in each course.
For each course that you list on your preference form, be sure to check the following:
- When determining which courses to take, please bear in mind that the Australian academic system is an intensive, three-year program. Please make sure that the course description clearly states that it is an undergraduate course.
- Remember in Australia, U.S. fall semester = semester 2 and U.S. spring semester = semester 1. Be sure to select courses for the correct semester you are studying abroad.
- Please note that you will have to fulfill any prerequisites listed in the course description. Generally, you must have some background in the subjects you wish to study at your host institution. List only those courses for which you are academically prepared.
What if I need to take a required course?
Please be aware that IFSA-Butler cannot guarantee that your host university will offer a particular course, or that you will be allowed to take that particular course. However, if you need to take a required course, you may indicate that it is required on your course preference form. Your IFSA-Butler program advisor will communicate your needs to your host university.
You will have to fulfill any prerequisites listed in the course description. Generally, you must have some background in the subjects you wish to study at your host institution. List only those courses for which you are academically prepared.
How many courses am I able to take, and how do I determine U.S. semester credit hours?
IFSA-Butler requires students to enroll in a full course load at the host institution. The number of courses you take depends on the credit value of the courses you select. Students typically take 4 courses (equivalent to 16 U.S. semester credit hours). For information on the credit weight, please consult the information below.
1 SCU unit = 4 U.S. semester credit hours
SCU double unit = 8 U.S. semester credit hours
What are the registration conditions?
You must take a full Southern Cross University course load as determined by IFSA-Butler. Credit will be awarded on a Butler University transcript based on a typical U.S. full course load. All courses are graded on an A-F scale, and there is no provision for pass/fail or auditing courses unless pass/fail is the only method of assessment for the course. You are not allowed to register for online, distance education or hybrid courses.
You should also be aware that you may be charged additional fees by your home institution or host university to take or process additional credits. Taking less than a full course load may jeopardize your student status and result in personal academic repercussions and/or loss of financial aid.
The course preference form is not a registration form; it is a guideline to let your host university know which courses you are interested in taking abroad. You should discuss your course selections with your academic advisor at your home institution and have several backup choices in mind. Neither you nor the university is bound by your selections; however you will register for your courses online prior to departure.
What do I need to know about exams?
Because of the differences in the academic systems, you will not know your exam schedule until after you arrive at your host university. Please refer to your program calendar to review the exam period for your host university. Your host university's policies do not permit you to reschedule any exams, request alternate assessments or arrange to have your exams proctored in the United States. If this occurs, IFSA-Butler cannot assist you in conducting a grade query or academic follow-up for the course in which you made this arrangement. You will need to complete and submit all academic work prior to departing the program.
How will my home university know what my classes were and what grades I received?
After you have returned to the U.S., your home university will receive a Butler University transcriptwith the credit you earned at Southern Cross University. The Butler University transcript will report the equivalent U.S. semester credit hours and letter grades. We also will send an official transcript to your permanent address.
Housing OptionsWhat are my housing options?
All IFSA-Butler students are housed at Orion College. Orion is a residential college that sits on the hill overlooking campus. Students have single rooms in a four- to-six bedroom flat. You will prepare your own meals in a shared kitchen area. The residential college has a recreation hall, 24-hour computer room and a 15-meter swimming pool.
Accommodations are self-catering, meaning students will purchase and prepare their own meals in a shared kitchen area.
Is my housing included in the program fee?
Yes. Your program fee includes accommodation at the university while classes are in session. You will be responsible for any commuting costs you may incur. Australian university housing requires students to move out during breaks between semesters. If you are studying abroad for a year and wish to remain in residence during the vacation period(s), you must notify the university housing office upon arrival to make necessary arrangements. Staying in residence during these breaks may incur additional costs not covered by the IFSA-Butler program fee.
When will I receive my housing assignment?
You will most likely receive your housing assignment one to two weeks before your departure. However, in some cases you may not receive your housing assignment until you arrive in Australia for orientation. Your program advisor will notify you of your housing assignment via e-mail when it is released by the university.
Please keep in mind that while IFSA-Butler guarantees housing, we cannot guarantee your preferences.
Do I have to pay a housing deposit?
Yes. IFSA-Butler requires a refundable housing deposit of $300 before going abroad. We will return this deposit to you after March 1 for fall programs or September 1 for spring and year programs, less any fines, damages or outstanding debts in your name.
Can I arrange my own housing?
Yes. IFSA-Butler recognizes that some students require independent housing for their time abroad. If you choose not to take advantage of our guaranteed housing, you may sign up for independent housing on the housing preference form. Once you've made this choice, we will not provide housing for you or bill you for the accommodation fee.
Please be advised that housing costs can be high abroad, and many times students living independently end up spending more money than students living in IFSA-Butler arranged housing. If you are hoping to save money by arranging housing on your own, please research your options early so you can compare costs. You must notify us of your intention to live in independent housing by December 1 for spring and semester 1 programs or by May 1 for fall and semester 2 programs. We are not able to accommodate independent housing requests after these dates.
Living and Studying Abroad in Lismore, Australia
Location: State of New South Wales, in southeast Australia
- A university town a with a relaxed but cosmopolitan attitude
- Located in a renowned ecotourism destination
- A variety of festivals, performing arts and an especially good music scene
- A sports town, with an outstanding facility for major events at Oakes Oval, dozens of playing fields and courts, several gyms, horse and greyhound racing tracks, and a popular motor speedway
- Head to Broadwater National Park, about 30 minutes away, for swimming, fishing and bushwalking
- Surf or whale-watch at bohemian Byron Bay, just 25 miles from Lismore
- See Aboriginal sites at Bundjalung National Park and some of the best coastal scenery in the area
- Surf, swim or walk the Gold Coast's incredible beaches, 90 minutes away
Northern New South Wales
Lismore City Council
Dates & Fees
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Your program end date may change due to circumstances beyond IFSA-Butler's control. Upon arrival at your host university, be sure to verify your exam schedule and program end date. We also strongly recommend that you investigate fees and penalties associated with your airline tickets in case you need to make date or route changes.
All program support services end on the “Program Ends” date.
Exams must be taken where and when scheduled. Under no circumstances may students request that an exam time be changed. In Australia exams are taken under formal examination conditions, and changes cannot be made for individuals.
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What's included in our Australia program fees
Calendar Year and Semester 1 Payments Due: December 15
Academic Year and Semester 2 Payments Due: May 15
Program Fee Bills
IFSA-Butler will send a single bill for the entire program fee, which includes tuition, services and housing. Students who opt for independent housing will not be charged the housing component of the program fee.
The housing component of our program fee is based on the average cost of local student self-catering accommodation, usually a shared room in a regular dormitory, apartment or house without any extra features.
† Housing Deposit
This program requires a housing deposit of $300. This payment is in addition to the program fee but is due on the same date. The deposit is held separately from the program fee and should be paid separately. The deposit is refunded to the student after the program, less any damages, fines or outstanding debts in the student’s name.
Personal Cost Estimates
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These figures are designed to assist students with financial planning but are only estimates based on past students’ experiences at the current exchange rate. They do not include any entertainment or vacation travel costs.
The above numbers are general estimates of expenses during a program abroad. We recommend taking into account your current spending habits, the cost of living in your host country and the current exchange rate. Your IFSA-Butler program advisor can be helpful as you attempt to work on a personal budget for your experience abroad.
Personal Miscellaneous: Covers general expenses of college life, including course supplies, photocopying, toiletries, snacks, personal care, etc.
All costs are in U.S. dollars.
To apply to the Southern Cross University program, use our easy online application.
Applicants to the Southern Cross University program must complete additional forms as part of the application process:
We must receive these forms before we can send your application to Southern Cross for an admissions decision. They can be sent to IFSA-Butler via email, fax or regular mail. Please submit these forms with the remainder of your program application.
If you have already started an application to the Southern Cross University program, you can check the status of your application using the student portal.
Meet Your IFSA-Butler Team
IFSA-Butler has a dedicated team of staff who are here to help students prepare for their program in Australia:
Senior Program Advisor Laura Wallman assists with the application process and is here to answer program, cultural, and academic questions before departure. Laura can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229, ext. 4224. Laura studied abroad in both high school and college and has been with the Institute for Study Abroad for the past five years. She currently acts as a senior program advisor for English-speaking programs and focuses on advising students studying in the United Kingdom and Australia.
Student Accounts Coordinator Becki Niccum assists with the financial side of study abroad and processes payments and invoices. Becki can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-3077.
Student & Parent Services Manager Donnetta Spears is available to both students and parents for travel questions and information. Donnetta has worked with IFSA-Butler for 11 years, and she has traveled through parts of Europe, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. As the mother of 4 college students (including one who studied abroad on an IFSA-Butler program), she has a deep understanding of the ins-and-outs of study abroad from a parent perspective. Donnetta can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-4252.
Once abroad, our students are in the capable hands of our on-site office, including Resident Director Christi Hoover. Click here to read more about Christi.
Upon return from your study abroad program, Academic Affairs Coordinator Paige Ward processes your Butler University transcript and assists with any academic record queries. Paige graduated from Butler University, and she studied abroad for a semester in Paris, Belfast, London and the English Lake District. Studying abroad for Paige was an eye-opening and knowledge-gaining experience, and she is excited to work with students who are looking for the same. Paige can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229 ext. 4254.