Overseas students find accommodation too costly in Australia

MELBOURNE: Overseas students say accommodation and living costs are too high in Australia, a survey has found.

The International Student Barometer (ISB), a survey for Universities Australia, the peak representative body for universities, received responses from more than 36,000 international students.

It found 86% of students were satisfied with their education and 76% would recommend their university. But 40% of students were unhappy with the cost of living.

"Despite satisfaction with living overall, cost is an issue. The cost of accommodation, cost of living, difficulty in finding employment [and] visa advice all emerge as concerns," the survey says.

The Age newspaper reports Universities Australia chief executive Glenn Withers as saying that the survey showed most international students had a good experience studying in Australia.

But he said universities should not take the results for granted.

"We do not and must not see the world through rose-coloured glasses. The ISB survey also confirms there is no room for complacency and still room for improvement," Withers is quoted as saying.

The survey found a significant increase in concern over accommodation costs in 2010, which was partially attributed to the global financial crisis.

China is the top source country for international students coming to Australia. — Bernama

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