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Difference between college and university

Difference between college and university
Written by Sim K

So what’s the difference between college and university?

To summarise, a college is a smaller institute as compared to university. There is also difference in number of students enrolled. Generally, universities have a greater number of students. Particularly in Australia, a university is a Higher Education provider and has to meet strict requirements to become a self-accrediting authority through the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) . There are currently 43 universities in Australia, that provide three main types of higher education leading to Bachelor, Master and Doctoral Degrees. These organisations are regarded more prestigious than colleges, due to accreditation, the quality of research produced by its professors and alumni. 

Other differences between college and university.

On the other hand, In Australia, a college generally refers to a technical and further education institution (TAFE), that offer certificate and diploma vocational courses under the Australian Qualifications Framework.

A college may be an independent institution or form part of a university. While university courses tend to have an academic focus, TAFE courses are typically more hands-on and are focused on providing students with the workplace skills and training needed by employers. 

The differences I feel between college and university.

Being born and brought up in a small town in India, I always dreamt to study in top institutes of the world. It was a dream come true for me when I got an opportunity to study in the top engineering college in India. It had a big campus with all the facilities from the gym, playground and labs.

Although everything seems pretty good one thing, I realised was that most clubs, events and workshops of my college were kind of monotonous and were directly or indirectly linked with the engineering background.

There was something missing and which I realised after I begin my postgraduate in Australia’s biggest universities. With big campus and world-class facilities, everything was surreal, but the most striking thing was students.

Around fifty thousand students, mostly from different countries with different cultural background, it was something I never experienced before. I was mesmerised by seeing the diversity we have as a human.

For the first time, I witness the collaboration between medical and engineering department to develop devices to cure life threatening diseases. Students from the psychology department were using engineering tools to demystify human behaviour. Collaboration between the different field of study was common and it’s kind of make sense to me.

I realised that different viewpoint is important because they bring a different perspective to a given problem statement and that’s how most of the real-life problems are solved. I feel lucky and fortunate to have an opportunity to experience in person.

With so many things going on in the university campus, I learned few things which I wanted to learn in my undergrad college, such as, I learned cooking from cooking experts and got financial advice from economics gurus. 

Students from the psychology department were using engineering tools to demystify human behaviour. Collaboration between the different field of study was common and it’s kind of make sense to me.

I realised that different viewpoint is important because they bring a different perspective to a given problem statement and that’s how most of the real-life problems are solved.

I feel lucky and fortunate to have an opportunity to experience in person. With so many things going on in the university campus, I learned few things which I wanted to learn in my undergrad college, such as, I learned cooking from cooking experts and got financial advice from economics gurus. 

Author: Sim K

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