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May 22, 2024, 06:51:31 pm

Author Topic: Help with uni choices for Science/IT degree? Macquarie, UTS or USYD?  (Read 5459 times)

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Hi all,

Currently in Year 12 and thinking about my options for undergrad study for next year. Iíd love to do some sort of double degree on IT/Computer Science and Science as I really enjoy both these field of study and thing theyíll be relatively relevant in the future. If anything, Iíd also like a course that allows me to have plenty of opportunities for overseas exchange (I studied Japanese for most of high school and speak Polish as a second language and would love to go to places in Japan, etc.)

At the moment Iím debating on whether I should go to Macquarie, UTS or USYD to study this. For Macquarie, I would probably go for the B. Science/B. Information Technology. Being from the Hills District, Macquarie is the closest university to me and the most convenient to travel to (being approx. 20 minutes on the metro). The campus is quite nice overall, and Iíve been told by my school that I should easily be able to get in through the Leaders and Achieverís program (even before doing the HSC exams), which is great. Perhaps a slight downside is that my school is very connected to Macquarie, and about over half of our cohort general goes there to study - I kind of want to start afresh going to uni.

UTS I know has a really good upcoming reputation in Engineering/IT, and have lots of adjustment factors that make it easier to get in a course. Its location in the city centre is also quite prime. However, it doesnít have the exact sort of double degree I want to study (I would have to do an Engineering one with a major such as Software/Electronics), and the way the campus is spaced out seems somewhat... haphazard? IDK, it might be just me being nit picky.

USYD seems to have a decent science faculty and has a really nicely designed campus from my experiences. It is also the highest cut off to get in out of all the choices so far (90 for B. Advanced Computing/B. Science), and Iíve heard their building some new Engineering/IT faculty stuff. However, Iíve heard in the past that they arenít that great for Computer Science stuff, so Iím a bit confused if I should still consider it as I still want to study Science as well.

Iíve heard UNSW is the best for Engineering/Computer Science in Sydney but Iíve so far ruled it out due to its long travel time (about 1.5 hrs on public transport).

What are everyoneís thoughts? Any experiences studying at any of these places? Would love to hear them as well as any recommendations!

Thanks so much.


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Re: Help with uni choices for Science/IT degree? Macquarie, UTS or USYD?
« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2020, 12:54:04 pm »
Hey there,

Welcome to the forums!

I'm just gonna give a heads up that I'm probably a bit biased because I'm studying engineering at UNSW so be sure to take my advice with a grain of salt.

UNSW, UTS, USyd  and Macquarie were all unis I considered when I was putting down my UAC preferences. They all have their pros and cons.

Starting off with Macquarie, they do offer a lot of great early entry/scholarship programs. In fact, I got offered an early entry position there and declined it. When doing research on Macquarie Uni and what their engineering programs are like, I will say they're improving but what got me to become a bit hesitant with them is that their department is relatively new. I went to their Open Day in 2015 and they said that the department was around 4 years old at that time. On the other hand, Macquarie Uni is quite close to a lot of companies like Optus and Cochlear so perhaps if you want to go down the computer science route, these companies may interest you.

Moving on to UTS, they're also improving their "reputation" for the engineering department. The great thing with UTS is that they're very supportive for UTS alumni in establishing start up companies, especially since they have a start up program - if you want to go down the IT and entrepreneurial route, this could be for you. I also think UTS is starting to be a bit more recognised globally, especially since they've been running a few programs for PhD Indigenous students to intern at NASA JPL. But, just like you said, UTS is quite scattered and they may have Building 11/Engineering building, but it's not like all your classes are in there so you may have a class in Building 1 (the big brown ugly building lol) and the next class might be in Building 5 (close to Haymarket) - the trek might not be convenient. 

With USyd, because it's such a well-known uni, it tends to be a lot more recognised globally (though this doesn't mean if you don't go to USyd you can't work overseas). I think it's because USyd has more connections globally - I mean, one of their engineering lecturers is a former astronaut. However, the main reason why I didn't choose USyd as my first preference was because when I went to their Open Day in 2018, they focused a lot more on the theoretical aspects of engineering (in fact, I believe one of their presentation slides was dedicated to unsolvable math equations or something lol). I also personally find it disappointing that it's clear most of the funding goes to Humanities/Arts department, especially since if you go to the engineering building, it's an old building tucked away in a parking lot.

With UNSW, I think they have a good science and engineering faculty because they're always trying to offer students opportunities to get involved with student led projects and getting practical experience - in fact, one of my engineering classes had a TAFE component to it so we can learning machining skills. However, I will say that UNSW has been in a lot of scrutiny by students and media because of trimesters and how it's an obvious move to get more money out of students. It's also a bit of a trek to travel to UNSW as someone who's from travels around 1 hour to uni.

Now I will say that my comparison between UNSW and USyd is probably a bit unfair so I will link an article that Reiley and I wrote comparing our experiences studying aerospace engineering at USyd vs UNSW here. But I do hope sharing my thought process in deciding my uni preferences helped you in some way!
2018 HSC: English Advanced | Mathematics | Physics | Modern History | History Extension | Society and Culture | Studies of Religion I

ATAR: 93.60

2019: Aerospace Engineering (Hons)  @ UNSW