University of Sydney
Course: Medicine (MD, postgrad)
What subjects did you do at IB/A levels and what were your CCAs?
Chemistry, physics, maths, GP . Rugby
How does the workload of university compare with IB/A levels?
Undergrad is manageable, you’ll have time for a part-time job.
Postgrad medicine is pretty full-on, there’s no time for work.
How did you decided on this final university?
I did my undergrad in sydney too, so i like this city. Also, i heard that Sydney University Medicine is among the top2 in Australia.
What are the cost of living and cost of school fees for the entire duration of the degree?
Annual fees ~$69000 AUD
cost of living
accommodation ~$320 per week
food ~ $20 a day
How do teaching and learning work in your school? Are the faculty accessible?
It is mostly up to you to attend the lectures and do your own readings. Half the lessons are compulsary and have attendance taken. When u dont understand the material, u can email the respective staff for help.
How large are your courses?
~350 at the start, but people unenrolled/repeated the year and now it is about ~310
Are people very competitive academically? How many exams are there in a year? What happens if one fails the year?
Not academically competitive because results don’t matter much; its more about passing, and quite many people offer help to other students, usually online.
There are about 3 major written exams, 3 small written exams, and 1 osce per year.
If one fails, they have to repeat the year.
How would you describe the school culture?
Work hard, play hard. Lots of study-time is required to pass the course. Once its over, people know how to let loose.
Is there an established Singaporean presence at your university? How many Singaporeans are there per batch?
yes. approximate numbers
2016 – 32
2015 – 29
2014 – 10
2013 – 25
2012 – 20
How are freshmen/freshers welcomed to your university?
There is a general Orientation’week for the whole university, when societies set up their booths. U can walk around and decide which one u want to sign up for.
In Medicine, there is a medicamp, which goes on for an entire weekend. it is always quite wild with lots of alcohol.
How are international freshmen/freshers welcomed to your university?
same as previous question. international students also usually look to join their country’s society. eg. Singapore Student’s Society
Is your school “cliquey”?
I would say, relatively, yes. but everyone talks to each other, as good communication and teamwork is required in the course.
Do people tend to hang among people of their own major/course/social class/race/nationality only, or is there a high degree of integration?
As above, moderate integration, but people mostly hang out with their own ethnicity. Asians will hang out with asians from other countries, aussies with aussies, etc.
What do students normally do in their spare time? Have you joined any extracurriculars? How do you find them.
Sport. Australia is big on sport. I have joined touchrugby and ultimate frisbee. It is fun and important to exercise during non academic time, to keep healthy.
How would you rate the following “scenes” in your college and its surroundings: shopping, drinking, clubbing, fine arts, and sports?
shopping : not much
drinking : a lot
clubbing : not much, with the exception of a few people
fine arts : only the students who did undergrad in artsy subjects
sports : many people get involved. some try to learn new sports
How’s the accommodation? Do most people stay in college dorms/halls, or independently? How should one look for accommodation?
Most people stay independently to save costs.
A large group of people stay in student accommodation (private). While about 15% stay in student accommodation (college life).
How is the transport like? Does one need a car? If so, how should one go about getting a car?
A car is not needed especially if u live near campus.
A car is more for convenience in other aspects of daily living. Cars can be gotten from private car yards or directly from the company merchant eg. Toyota. Websites like Gumtree are cheaper, but at your own risk.
Is Asian food readily available? If one is to cook, where can we get the Asian food from?
Yes, plenty of asian marts around.
Do most people cook, eat at a catered facility or cafeteria, or eat out? How’s the catered food?
Most people cook, as it is much cheaper.(labor cost in aus in high, hence eateries are expensive, average $10 per meal)
few eat at a catered facility because its expensive and repetitive.
There are some students who can afford eating out all the time.
What are the laundry arrangements like?
In private housing, usually it is provided.
In student dorms, $7 for a complete dry and wash.
Is it easy to find places of worship?
Yes. Even the university has them.
Do you think Singaporeans will experience a major culture shock?
Not in Sydney, there are many Singaporeans around.
Do you ever feel peer pressure to do something you’re uncomfortable with?
Sometimes, you have to speak to a group of students during discussion class, or speak to a patient when you are not prepared. Those can be challenging sometimes. Other than that, no.
Do you think that there might be any groups which might feel uncomfortable or marginalized at your school?
Only a few. As there are many people from different backgrounds here, most people find others that they can get along with. Open discrimination is not commonplace in a university
What’s the best experience you’ve had so far in college?
It is simply making close friendships with your neighbours, getting a good support group.
Is there anything that you wish you knew before leaving?
Not much, it is not hard to adapt in an asian-populated city like Sydney.
Any final things you’d like to tell Singaporeans about your school?
It is very big, and takes time to walk from class to class. some people even skateboard.