ISA Study Abroad in Gold Coast, Australia

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Most eastern point of the Australian mainland.
Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia


Students studying in Gold Coast, Australia have the unique opportunity to choose between three universities: Bond University, Griffith University, or the New York Film Academy.

Bond University provides students with the atmosphere of a U.S. campus and a academic calendar that aligns well with North America. Popular subject areas include: Business, Australian Studies, Hospitality and Tourism, Psychology and Criminology. Griffith University is a rapidly growing, modern campus located just 20 minutes, by bus, from the famous Surfer's Paradise beach town. A wide array of academic areas are available, including popular subjects of Business, Social Sciences and Communications. The New York Film Academy blends a traditional film school education with hands-on experiences including writing, producing and editing of original films. Participants select one of two courses at NYFA: Filmmaking or Acting for Film.

Visit the ISA website to learn more.


ISA Scholarships
ISA Scholarships and Financial Aid

ISA is committed to increasing all students’ access to study abroad’s many benefits. We don't let financial hardships to get in the way of a life changing educational experience.

$350 - $2,000

Questions & Answers


based on 17 reviews
  • Academics 7.8
  • Support 9
  • Fun 8.1
  • Housing 9.9
  • Safety 9.6
Showing 16 - 17 of 17
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Yes, I recommend this program

A Semester-Long Vacation

The Gold Coast is a resort town... well, make that resort city. It's lots - sorry, heaps of fun, but it is definitely geared towards tourists. On that note though, there are plenty of great places to shop and dine, and the beaches are amazing. It's mid winter as I write this and I'm laying on the beach and swimming in the ocean regularly. Also, the nightlife in the downtown areas of the Gold Coast is a lot of fun, every night of the week. There are plenty of bars, clubs, and late night munchy eateries.

Griffith University Gold Coast is an awesome campus, I couldn't be more happy with it. The campus itself seems brand new. It's very clean and well-landscaped. It's compact enough to get around quick without feeling claustrophobic. The teachers are also very good. I took mostly film and music production/business classes while here. Since the teachers actually come from backgrounds in the areas they're teaching, they're very passionate and knowledgeable in a practical, real-world sense. Many of them will teach a class, then go to a gig.

I live in Griffith University Village, which is an unaffiliated apartment complex near campus. It's only about a ten minute walk to campus, which is really convenient. It's a lot of fun, but can be loud at times. Basically you can always party when you want to party, but if you want quiet study time you might have to do it on campus. I have no problem with it, everyone is really friendly and down for anything.
This is a great location for travel if you do want to get out of the Gold Coast and see some 'real' Australia. Brisbane is a $5 bus/train ride from campus and from there you can get anywhere else. I just booked a trip to New Zealand pretty cheaply for spring break, flying out of there.

The only downside to Australia in general that I've found is that it is extremely expensive. The minimum wage here is almost double what it is in the US, so everything is pricier, relative to that. It also doesn't help that our dollar isn't very strong at the moment, but that fluctuates. It's still worth coming, just plan ahead for that kind of budget. I would say about $5,000-6,000 of additional spending money would get you through the semester very comfortably, going on a few trips and going out regularly. Since I only planned for around $3,000, this was a bit of a wake up call. If you plan ahead, this will be one of the best times of your life.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Just the Beginning

I have been here living at Griffith University Village (GUV), which AustraLearn set me up with for about a month and a half now. One of my roommates is from Finland (Miikka), another from Brisbane (Vinny), and my two others are girls and they have become my best friends here: Ashley is from Philadelphia, PA and Stephanie is from Connecticut. We are pretty much like a family and its weird to think that we just met not too long ago. We each have our own bedrooms and share a kitchen and little living area, along with a porch outside. I couldn't be happier with the way things are set up.

And when it comes to Uni, classes are easy so far. There is mostly weekly readings and presentations in every class (I am a Communications Studies Major). I thought it would be more difficult, but so far-so good. The people here are so nice (the Aussies)- their attitudes in general are easy-going and happy. "No worries" is something that you hear on a daily basis around campus, from teachers, etc. The beaches are bus rides away and so beautiful. I have never in my life seen such gorgeous beaches!

The only problem having them so close is that it is tempting to miss class in order to spend the day at the beach. Surfer's Paradise is the closest beach(es) but Burleigh Head and Coolangata are a little further but even nicer.

There is tons of shopping at places like Pacific Fair, Australia Fair, Harbour Town, Surfer's Paradise, and the list goes on and on. I go to Harbour Town at least once a week for their food market (fresh produce, etc.) and Woolworths (grocery store) because its only about five minutes away on the bus and its the cheapest food I have found yet.

The biggest problems that I have had here is adjusting to not watching television. I am such a TV person and the tv that came with our place only has 7 channels and nothing of interest to me. I have gotten used to it, though, but I sometimes still crave a good Food Network show or something. Netflix and Hulu are not accessible in this country, just like many other sites and sources that we are used to having back in the states.

Another issue that I had coming here is not packing enough warm clothing. I didn't realize that it would get this chilly (especially at nighttime) where I just wanted to wear big 'ol sweatpants and a hoodie. I had to go to KMart (at Australia Fair) to buy some cheap sweatshirts. But I know that it's about to get warmer and warmer because we are heading into Spring!

Coming here was my first overseas adventure and now I want to experience more countries, cities, people, accents, etc. I feel like I am getting a taste of something different (but not too different - like a 3rd world country or something...). I plan on going to Europe next! Actually, I was thinking about going to Bali, Indonesia for Spring Break and then Fiji on the way home...! I know, exciting right!?

Anyways, it's been a great time here so far and I cannot wait to learn to surf and experience even more that Australia has to offer. I truly recommend studying abroad here (or anywhere) outside of your comfort zone because this is something you'll never get a chance to do again after graduating. Have fun!