University of Melbourne vs University of Sydney: Which One is for You?

University of Melbourne vs University of Sydney, which one is for you? Whether you’re a future student or just curious about the two universities, it’s not hard to see why people want to know this.

university of melbourne vs university of sydney

Both are prestigious institutions with an excellent reputation in Australia and worldwide. They both offer undergraduate degrees as well as graduate programs, so you can study whatever interests you at either university.

But which one should you choose? We’ve compared them on three important factors: rankings, cost, subjects, and location to help make your decision easier!

About the University of Melbourne

The University of Melbourne is a public institution in Melbourne, Australia. Established in 1853 and the oldest university in Victoria, this Australia’s second-best institute has a main campus at Parkville with additional campuses throughout the state.

Over 21 percent of our undergraduate students participate in an international study experience during their degree, and more than 20,000 foreign students attend the University.

About the University of Sydney

The University of Sydney is a public university in Sydney, Australia. It is the first institution in Australia and has been recognized as one of the best universities worldwide by several ranking organizations. It was established in 1850.

University of Melbourne vs University of Sydney

The City and Cost of Living

Considering a range of factors, such as affordability, desirability, and the opinions of current students, the QS Best Student Cities ranking provides an overview of the best places to live and study around the world.

According to QS Best Student Cities 2022, Melbourne is the best student city in Australia and number 6 in the world. And Sydney is following second in Australia, while it is number 8 in the world.

As for the cost of living, it really depends on the living style and the choice of accommodation.

With the assumption of students with cheap to a moderate living style and shared house accommodation, the estimation of cost of living for both cities is as below.

Melbourne: from $AUD 634/week

  • Accommodation: from 225/week
  • Transport: from $AUD 38/week
  • Food: from $AUD 159/week
  • Personal: from $AUD 37/week
  • Clothing: from $AUD 140/week
  • Entertainment: from $AUD 35/week

Sydney: from $AUD 665/week

  • Accommodation: from 238/week
  • Transport: from $AUD 54/week
  • Food: from $AUD 159/week
  • Personal: from $AUD 36/week
  • Clothing: from $AUD 140/week
  • Entertainment: from $AUD 38/week

Source: cost of living calculator

University Rankings

The University of Melbourne

  • #2 in Australia (QS World University Ranking / QS WUR 2022)
  • #37 in the world (QS World University Ranking / QS WUR 2022)
  • #1 in Australia (Times Higher Education / THE 2022)
  • #33 in the world (Times Higher Education / THE 2022)
  • #2 in Australia (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020)
  • #7 in the world (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020)

The University of Sydney

  • #3 in Australia (QS World University Ranking / QS WUR 2022)
  • #38 in the world (QS World University Ranking / QS WUR 2022)
  • #5 in Australia (Times Higher Education / THE 2022)
  • #58 in the world (Times Higher Education / THE 2022)
  • #1 in Australia (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020)
  • #4 in the world (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020)

Rankings by Subjects

The rankings are based on QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021 (Australia).

The University of Melbourne

  • Art & Humanities: #1
  • Life Science & Medicine: #2
  • Engineering & Technology: #2
  • Natural Sciences: #2
  • Social Sciences & Management: #1
  • Computer Science & Information System: #1
  • Art & Design: #6
  • Accounting & Finance: #1
  • Business & Management Studies: #1
  • Law & Legal Studies: #1

The University of Sydney

  • Art & Humanities: #3
  • Life Science & Medicine: #1
  • Engineering & Technology: #4
  • Natural Sciences: #3
  • Social Sciences & Management: #2
  • Computer Science & Information System: #3
  • Art & Design: #8
  • Accounting & Finance: #3
  • Business & Management Studies: #3
  • Law & Legal Studies: #3

Campus Locations

The University of Melbourne

The main campus is the Parkville campus, which is located a short walk from central Melbourne.

Parkville anchors an additional six specialist campuses located throughout Greater Melbourne and regional Victoria, and three innovation precincts in the city center as well.

The University of Sydney

The main campus has been ranked in the top 10 of the world’s most beautiful universities by The British Daily Telegraph and other sources, such as Oxford.

The university is located across two inner-city suburbs – Camperdown and Darlington.

Faculties and Schools

The University of Melbourne

The University of Melbourne is divided into 10 faculties, which encompass all major departments of both research and teaching.

Architecture, Building, and Planning

  • Melbourne School of Design

Arts

  • Faculty of Arts
  • Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Business and Economics

  • Faculty of Business and Economics
  • Melbourne Business School
  • Melbourne School of Professional and Continuing Education

Education

  • Melbourne Graduate School of Education

Engineering

  • Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology
  • School of Computing and Information Systems

Fine Arts and Music

  • Faculty of Fine Arts and Music
  • Victorian College of the Arts
  • Melbourne Conservatorium of Music

Law

  • Melbourne Law School
  • Melbourne School of Government

Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences

  • Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences
  • Melbourne Dental School
  • Melbourne Medical School
  • Melbourne School of Health Sciences
  • Melbourne School of Population and Global Health
  • Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences
  • School of Biomedical Sciences

Science

  • School of BioSciences
  • School of Chemistry
  • School of Earth Sciences
  • School of Ecosystem and Forest Sciences
  • School of Geography
  • School of Mathematics and Statistics
  • School of Physics

Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences

  • Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences

The University of Sydney

Undergraduate Programs

Architecture, Design, and Planning

  • Bachelor of Architecture and Environments
  • Bachelor of Design Computing
  • Bachelor of Design in Architecture
  • Bachelor of Design in Architecture

Arts and Social Sciences

  • Bachelor of Arts (Media and Communications) (Honours)
  • Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Advanced Studies
  • Bachelor of Economics
  • Bachelor of Education (Health and Physical Education)
  • Bachelor of Education (Primary)

Dentistry

  • Doctor of Dental Medicine

Engineering, Project Management, and Information Technologies

  • Bachelor of Advanced Computing
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Aeronautical)
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Biomedical)
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Chemical and Biomolecular)
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Civil)
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Electrical)
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Mechanical)
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Mechatronic)
  • Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Software)
  • Bachelor of Project Management

Health Sciences

  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Diagnostic Radiography)
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise and Sport Science)
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise Physiology)
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy)
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Physiotherapy)
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Speech Pathology)
  • Bachelor of Oral Health

Pharmacy

  • Bachelor of Pharmacy

Postgraduate Programs

Architecture, Design, and Planning

  • Master of Architectural Science (Audio and Acoustics)
  • Master of Architectural Science (High Performance Buildings)
  • Master of Architectural Science (Illumination Design)
  • Master of Architectural Science (Sustainable Design)
  • Master of Architecture
  • Master of Architecture
  • Master of Design (Design Innovation)
  • Master of Design (Design Innovation)
  • Master of Design (Strategic Design)
  • Master of Heritage Conservation
  • Master of Interaction Design and Electronic Arts
  • Master of Urban Design

Science

  • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine

Sydney Medical School

  • Bachelor of Arts and Doctor of Medicine

Sydney Nursing School (Nursing and Midwifery)

  • Bachelor of Arts and Master of Nursing

The University of Sydney Business School

  • MBA

Cost (Tuition Fee)

Estimation tuition fees for both universities are:

  • University of Melbourne:  From $AUD 30,000 to 65,000 per year
  • University of Sydney: From $AUD 36,000 to 57,000 per year

Acceptance Rate

The University of Melbourne

The University of Melbourne’s admission requirements is moderately difficult, with an acceptance rate around 70% to 80%. Each program has different entry standards and the degree of competitiveness among students varies.

For standard applicants, an undergraduate degree of three years or more is required, with a minimum credit average (GPA equivalent of 65% at the University of Melbourne) and must be from one of the following: The University of Melbourne, another Australian institution, or a university in another country.

The University of Sydney

The University of Sydney has an acceptance rate of 30%. This indicates that the university’s admissions process is extremely competitive. The University of Sydney remains a popular choice for both Australian and overseas students wanting to further their education in Australia.

To be considered, standard applicants must have a minimum GPA of 5 as determined by the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC). Rural applicants must have a minimum UAC GPA of 4.5 to be considered.

Admission & Application

The University of Melbourne

The University of Sydney

  1. Choose a course 
  2. Check your eligibility
  3. Gather your documents
  4. Check your finance
  5. Submit your application (select the ‘Apply now’ button on your course page)

Which University is for You?

The University of Melbourne is for You

The University of Melbourne is for you if you are looking for:

  • Cheaper cost of living and safer city
  • Comprehensive choice of programs
  • An average lower tuition fee
  • Higher ranking university
  • Higher ranking in most subjects
  • Easier entry (higher acceptance rate)

The University of Sydney is for You

The University of Sydney is for you if you are looking for:

  • The living experience in a big and more well-known metropolitan city
  • One of the oldest, most famous, and most beautiful campus in the world
  • Degrees in the area of Life Science and Medicine. This includes:
    • Agriculture & Forestry
    • Anatomy & Physiology
    • Biological Sciences
    • Dentistry
    • Medicine
    • Nursing
    • Pharmacy & Pharmacology
    • Psychology
    • Veterinary Sciences
  • Higher challenge and competitive environment
  • Higher employability in Australia and worldwide.

FAQs

Is Sydney or Melbourne better for students?

In 2021, the QS Best Student Cities Ranking will be published, which will include comments from more than 87,000 current and prospective international students. Melbourne was ranked sixth among the world’s best cities to study; Sydney finished eighth.

Is Melbourne University best in Australia?

The University of Melbourne is Australia’s top university, according to THE rankings, with the highest overall world ranking (31).

Which is best Melbourne or Sydney?

Without a doubt, Melbourne is the winner! Melbourne is home to a wide range of sports, culture, cuisine, nightlife, and beauty. Sydney is an excellent holiday destination, but living in Melbourne is always the winner!

Is Sydney or Melbourne more expensive?

The cost of living in Sydney is greater than the cost of living in Melbourne. While Sydneysiders make more on average than Melbournites, they pay 37% more for their homes, with the typical home price in Sydney costing $843,994 compared to $615,068 in Melbourne.


See also: Top 10 Best Universities in Australia for Computer Science and Information Systems