Pre-departure Guide

Why Raffles?

  • Raffles has a dynamic environment that gives students the opportunity to develop both practical and intellectual skills, the freedom to express, learn and grow into creative thinkers.

  • Small class sizes approximately 12 to 15 students, face to face personalised teaching

  • Competitive tuition fees

  • Internship program for all bachelor degrees

  • Industry lectures

  • New campus set within the heart of Parramatta city


Where are we?

In February 2015 we relocated to a refurbished, bright and spacious campus situated on 1 Fitzwilliam Street in the Central Business District of Parramatta.  The campus is directly in front of the Parramatta railway station and Westfield shopping centre.

Parramatta is located within Sydney’s western suburbs, about 24 kilometres from the Sydney CBD. Western Sydney is a large, dynamic region, characterised by a young and diverse community, a strong economy and a unique natural environment. It is one of Australia’s fastest growing urban populations with affordable accommodation.
Raffles student campus

New features:

  • Lecture theatre

  • Modern Library 

  • Exhibition space / venue with facilities for students, staff, artists, designers on the ground floor with prominent street frontage

  • Darkroom and available light studios for Photography

  • Concept and wet rooms for Graphic Design

  • Dedicated Fashion Marketing journal design and publishing studio

  • Fashion Design styling studio


Internship is a compulsory part of our bachelor degree programs, this gives student an opportunity to develop practical skills as well as beneficial partnership development and potential employment.



RPL (Recognition of Prior Learning)


If you have completed relevant study and you would like to apply for a credit transfer into any of our programs, you will need to submit your application and provide details of your previous course outline / syllabus with evidence of your study via transcripts. 


Class sizes

Our class sizes are small, with practical classes averaging 12-15 students. This means students receive individual attention from our experienced teaching staff. They will share their expertise and guide students towards their career and personal development goals.



Mode of study and assessment methods at Raffles

All our courses are delivered in class at the Parramatta campus with face to face learning. Assessment methods are conducted in various ways such as essays, group projects, research projects and presentations.


Intakes per year

Students may choose to enrol in one of the four intakes during a calendar year:
February | April | July | October



How to apply 

To apply you just need to send us your completed application form together with certified supporting documents as explained in the application form.  







The cost of living in Sydney is relatively high compared to other cities in the world.   You may refer to the estimated cost of living at

As a guide, a single student living away from home will spend anywhere between $1400 and $2000 every month on accommodation, food, utilities and entertainment.


There are plenty of accommodation choices ranging from living with a family in a homestay arrangement through to renting a house or an apartment. Choosing whether you would prefer to live in the city, close to the Parramatta campus will determine how much rent you will pay.

  • On average you can expect to pay between $220 and $600 per week for a self-contained studio, apartment or house.

  • A private room in a shared property generally costs between $300 and $500.?

  • Homestay students can expect to pay between $190 and $340, depending on your boarding arrangement.?

Official Accommodation Partner

We have a partnership with 2stay Accommodation:

Online Accommodation Services


Groceries and food

  • A weekly grocery bill for one person is usually between $100 and $130.

  • You will need to budget for another $40 per week for miscellaneous items such as toiletries and household products.


  • The cost of electricity and gas in a rental property will vary depending on how many with whom you're splitting the bill. A studio apartment with one tenant will use $10-15 of electricity every week.

  • Gas and water are payable in certain types of properties. Tenants in an apartment or shared dwelling do not have to pay water rates, and not all properties require gas.

  • Broadband internet starts at around $12.50 per week.

  • Post-paid phone plans start at $8 per week (SIM card only).



  • These expenses depend on your personal lifestyle and choice. As a rough guide, budget $80-100 per week for socialising and entertainment.


  • Overseas Student Health Cover is compulsory for international students, and costs about $8-15 per week.  To compare between health covers, check out Overseas Student Health Cover


  • Long day care (8am to 6pm) costs up to $300 per week (after government subsidies).

  • Before-school and after-school care costs around $80 per week.

  • Public school tuition is free for Australian permanent residents, however uniforms and levies can cost about $500 a year.

  • If you're an international student with school-age dependants in Australia, find out about the costs of schooling here. For options about public schools around Parramatta, please refer to bringing your children.

Academic support

  • Raffles College provides academic learning support services for all its students

  • Printing, photocopying, stationery and other study incidentals can cost about $15 per week.

  • If you require private tutoring, they may costs about $80 an hour.

  • Depending on your course, you may also need to budget for textbooks, lab/medical equipment or clothing, calculators, software and other course-specific materials.

One-off expenses

You will need to budget for setting-up costs.

  • Travel-related expenses, such as airfares, a removalist, and temporary accommodation on arrival

  • Rental bond – typically four weeks’ rent upfront, plus two weeks’ rent in advance. This can be higher if you’re living in a furnished property.

  • Installation and connection costs and administrative fees, such as connecting electricity, internet and gas

  • New or second-hand furniture if you’re moving into an unfurnished property

  • White goods, such as a refrigerator, microwave oven, laundry, and any household items not included with your rental property

  • Specific course-related costs (aside from your tuition fees), such as textbooks, equipment or software etc.


Please ensure your passport is valid for the intended length of your study period in Australia.


Please visit the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) website ( for full information about applying for a student visa.

Student visa holders can work in Australia up to 40 hours per fortnight while they are studying.

Find out about recent changes to Australian student visas.

For more information on visa requirements for international students, please refer to International students should allow approximately 4-6 weeks before term for visa processing



Please make sure you advise our student services department as soon as you have confirmed an Australian address and emergency contact details.

Keep a document folder containing your offer letter, Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE), academic transcripts from previous study, identification documents, important contact numbers, a written character reference (translated into English) to help in securing accommodation, details of pre-arranged accommodation and important medical records.

Overseas Student Health Cover

It is an important requirement of your student visa that you have adequate health cover while you are studying in Australia.

Students can either select Raffles to arrange OSHC with Bupa or you can arrange your own.

To compare providers go to

Travel insurance

Organising travel insurance is an essential part of preparing for your overseas trip. If you are uninsured, you (or your family) are personally responsible for covering any medical or other costs resulting from unexpected incidents or accidents.

You should make sure your travel insurance covers all medical expenses for injury or illness, as well as theft of valuables, damage to baggage and cancellations or interruptions to flight plans. Accidents can happen to anyone, and medical costs overseas can reach hundreds of thousands of dollars. Australians have faced financial hardship to cover these costs when things go wrong.


Public transport

Travelling around Sydney’s bus, ferry and train network is easy and economical.

Airport transfers

A rail connection links the airport to the city and Sydney’s suburban rail network. A return city to airport rail pass is included in the Sydney Pass Sydney pass.

Bank accounts

When you arrive in Australia it is important to open a bank account as soon as possible. A bank account makes it easy and safe for you to deposit and withdraw money whenever and wherever you want. Student services staff can assist you with advice on opening a bank account at the bank of your choice.

To open a bank account, you will need at least your passport and other photographic identification. Check with a few banks about their foreign exchange arrangements, or whether they will waive bank fees for students. There are many banks along with ANZ Online Saver using the non-Australian resident form.

International Business Service Offering

For all International Students, International Business Service Offering assists to open a bank account before landing in Australia with the ability to transfer funds before leaving home and receiving local income or payments once students arrive in Australia


It is recommended you have at least A$2,000 available to you on arrival in Sydney (approximately A$500 in cash and A$1,500 in travellers cheques or accessible by ATM).

Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS)

Australia welcomes international students. The Australian Government wants international students to have a rewarding, enjoyable and safe experience when they come to Australia to study. Australia’s education and training system offers high quality services and protection for international students to ensure they make the most of their time here. For more information please refer to the ESOS Factsheet


Bringing your children?

If you are bringing school aged children with you when you study in Australia you will need to arrange for them to attend school. The requirements for enrolling students and school fees vary across Australian states and territories, and across schools.

Schools fees apply to most dependants of temporary residents in New South Wales. There are some exceptions, for further information visit the Temporary Resident Programs- fees, exemptions and refunds

DEC International website has a range of information for international students interested in studying at NSW Government Schools.  You may find out about the public schools around Parramatta from the NSW Government website

The primary and secondary schools around Parramatta are:

Arthur Phillip High School (Secondary School)
Macquarie St, Parramatta NSW 2150

Arthur Phillip High School is located in the centre of Parramatta city, drawing students from suburbs around Parramatta and further afield. The school population is diverse with more than 80% of students coming from non-English speaking backgrounds. The school is a 21st century city school with 1450 students: one of the largest schools in the state.

Macarthur Girls High School (Secondary School)
1-19 MacArthur St, Parramatta NSW 2150

Macarthur Girls High School is situated on the Parramatta River next to Parramatta City. The school was founded in 1934 on a parcel of land which was part of the second oldest land grant in Australia.

Muirfield High School (Secondary School)
Barclay Rd North Rocks NSW 2150

Muirfield High School is as a comprehensive co-educational high school and enjoys excellent community links and support through its P&C. Muirfield provides a caring, supportive learning environment which offers students a wide range of opportunities.

Parramatta High School (Secondary School)
Great Western Highway, Parramatta NSW 2150

Parramatta High School, established in 1913, was the first co-educational comprehensive high school in Sydney. It has a long and successful history of providing quality education. The school is proud of its cultural diversity, commitment to social justice and core values of Respect, Responsibility and Honesty. The school is semi-selective and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity through a varied curriculum designed to challenge students and cater for a diverse range of needs, interests and abilities.

Parramatta East Public School (Primary School)
Brabyn St Parramatta NSW 2150

Parramatta East P.S. serves a diverse school community with students from over thirty-eight countries. This represents 76% of students with a language background other than English. The school enjoys strong community support and rightly deserves its reputation as an outstanding and sought after public school. Parramatta East is determined to nurture the development of each individual child, ensuring they have opportunities to achieve personal excellence across the curriculum.

Parramatta Public School (Primary School)
177 Macquarie St, Parramatta 2150

Parramatta P.S. is an exciting learning community in the heart of Parramatta. We have 97% of enrolments from language backgrounds other than English. The school celebrates and enjoys this multicultural diversity. The school is committed to personal best and promotes the core values - care, responsibility, teamwork, acceptance and excellence.

Parramatta West Public School (Primary School)
Auburn & Young Streets, Parramatta NSW 2150

Parramatta West Public School is a place which represents all that is wonderful in Australia. With over 50 languages spoken within the school population, we learn in a happy, safe and harmonious environment where strong values are taught. The school prides itself on the extent and quality of its teaching and learning programs in all key learning areas, its caring approach to students and its innovative programs in literacy, numeracy and the teaching of English as a second language.

Rowland Hassall School (Special School- School for specific purpose)
Cnr Harris St and Hassall Street, Parramatta NSW 2150

Rowland Hassall School caters for students with an intellectual disability and other secondary disabilities by providing quality education for all students enabling them to become independent responsible citizens.

There are several private schools around Parramatta region which cater to students ranging from Pre-Kindergarten to Year 12. They include:
  • St Oliver's Primary School
    Harris Park, Catholic-based education for Year K-6 (Co-educational)

  • St Patrick's Primary School
    Parramatta, Catholic-based education for Year K - 6 (Co-educational)

  • Our Lady of Mercy College
    Parramatta, Catholic-based education for Year 7 -12 (Girls)

  • Tara Anglican School for Girls
    North Parramatta, Anglican-based education for Pre-Kindergarten to Year 12 (Girls)  
  • The King's School
    North Parramatta, Anglican-based education for Year P-12 (Boys)    

  • Australian International Performing Arts High School
    Harris Park, Non-denominational education for Year 7 - 11 (Co-educational)


Our Student Handbook also contains useful information to help you plan your study at Raffles College of Design and Commerce. Raffles College Student Handbook.


More Information?

If you would like more information about our courses or would like to book a campus tour, please fill out your details and we will be in touch with you soon. 

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To apply online you will need to answer a few simple questions - this process will take around 10 minutes. Once we receive your application we will be in contact to discuss the details. 

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