Townsville, Australia – James Cook University

Study Abroad Program


There are two main campuses at James Cook University (JCU), one in Townsville and one in Cairns. Allegheny students can attend the campus in Townsville. Situated on the northeastern coast in the state of Queensland, the city of Townsville boasts over 300 days of sunshine each year. The Great Barrier Reef is only miles away from Townsville. In addition, the Paluma rainforest, Atherton Tablelands, and many marine park islands are easily accessible by bus, train, and plane. Townsville has an active theater and music scene, plenty of shopping, many restaurants and a popular beach area known as “The Strand.”

The Program

JCU offers courses in over 140 subjects and is noted for its departments of tropical environment studies and marine science. Allegheny students may study at JCU for the first term (February-June), the second term (July-November), or the academic year. Students should consider that the first semester in Australia is the February-June term. There are many resources available at JCU in order to help students feel at home and perform well academically. Support services like study skills advisers, new-student support, counseling or career advice, and the chaplain help to make a student’s time here the most positive experience possible.


This program is open to students who are at least first semester juniors. A minimum GPA of 3.0 (effective Spring 2005) is required to participate.

Application Process

Allegheny students must first be approved to study off-campus before applying to their chosen program. Application deadlines are February 20 for fall programs and September 20 for spring programs. Applications will be reviewed immediately following the appropriate semester deadline. For more information about the off campus study application process, please visit:

Student Life

Students may choose to live in on-campus housing, which can accommodate about 1,000 students. The Accommodation Service Office also maintains a register of off-campus housing. On campus, there are stores where students can purchase textbooks, computer hardware and software. Students have access to major banks on campus, as well as a travel agent, computer shop, hairdresser and coffee shop. In addition, a University Health Medical Center is located at the Townsville General Hospital next to the JCU Townsville Campus.


Students are charged Allegheny tuition and off-campus fee ($300).  The Allegheny tuition charge covers tuition at JCU, the students services and amenities fee which is used to provide a range of student support services and facilities that students can access, the mandatory Australian international student health insurance, program application fee and the student union fee. Students will pay for room and board once on-site (between $213-$435/week depending on housing placement). Additional costs will include Australian student visa ($550),  passport (if needed $120), transportation to Australia ($2000-$2500), books ($450)  local transportation ($45/week), and personal expenses (stationary, photocopying, entertainment, laundry: $75/week ).*

*Please note all costs are estimates and are subject to change

The Australian currency is the Australian dollar, and the symbol for it is “$”. The conversion rate as of September 2018 is $1.00USD equals $.72 Australian Dollar (AUD). Please make sure to convert costs accordingly.