5 things to consider when applying for residential colleges | University College

5 things to consider when applying for residential colleges

Written by Ruby Morton

Living at college is one of the best experiences you can get as a university student. It’s more than just a room, it’s being part of a community of like-minded people, lots of support and heaps of fun events you can get around. 

Here are five things for you to consider before you apply for a college place:

Which university do you want to study at?

Figuring out which university you want to attend and what degree you plan to study will assist you greatly in choosing the right residential college for you. If you are applying for a course at RMIT, ACU or even Monash University (Parkville campus), make sure you check which colleges take students from universities other than the University of Melbourne. Shameless plug – we are one of the residential colleges on the Crescent that offers spots to students from all universities. 

Besides that, talking to your school career advisor is one of the best ways to choose a residential college. In my experience, they are not only knowledgeable about university courses, they can also tell you everything you need to know about student accommodation options. They are great mentors and as an additional bonus, they can become your referee on your college application!

Visiting colleges

Book a college tour or attend Open Day to take a look at the colleges and get a feel for the different vibes and cultures. We always recommend seeing the residence on Open Day because there’s food and refreshments, activities and lots of students and staff around to have a chat with. If you can’t make it, that’s okay, we run tours of University College all year round, all you have to do is get in touch with your preferred date and time. We recommend trying to view whatever colleges you are interested in on the same day, so it’s all nice and clear in your mind. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!

If there are particular facilities that you are interested in, such as the gym, communal kitchen and library, make sure to ask about these on your tour. It is a good idea to bring your parents and siblings along too, particularly if they are ex-college students. They might ask questions you haven’t thought of, so you can get the most out of your tour. If you can’t make it in person, you can take a look at our rooms and facilities via a 360° virtual tour.

Another good way to get a closer look at life at a residential college is by checking out each college’s social media channels. University College has a Facebook, Instagram and TikTok account that shows our student life, rooms and facilities, college events and important dates. It’s a quick way to get a sense of each college culture and where you’ll fit best!

Application process

Once you know which college you wish to apply for you can begin the application process. When applying for University College, like any residential college, it is best to apply as early as possible to secure yourself a place and increase your chances of landing a great room. You don’t need a University offer or VTAC number to apply. We can offer you a provisional offer to lock in your place and give you an official offer once you have more details. At University College, we don’t have any minimum ATAR requirements either. We’re just looking for people who will fit into our community culture.

You can start by going to the Future Students tab on the University College website and click on ‘How To Apply’. This page will give you a summary of the application process and some tips (they’re very handy, so definitely check them out). 

When you’re ready to start the application process, click on ‘Apply Now’. You will be taken to the Intercollegiate website, where you can apply for all ten University of Melbourne affiliated colleges through one single portal. Click on ‘Apply Now’ again and you will be taken to the application portal. In the application, you will be required to fill out your personal details and referee contact information, submit required support documentation and rank the colleges in order of preference. Remember, the sooner you submit your application, the better your chances of getting your first preference. Keep in mind there is a $75 application fee, so ensure you are ready to pay this in the days after submitting your application. You will also require a passport style photo for your application. You can use your school photo, so make sure you have a digital copy ready to go.


After you submit your application, you can apply for a residential college scholarship. All of the colleges offer a range of different scholarships to support students who require or would benefit from financial assistance. At UC, you don’t need to apply for a specific scholarship – the staff will assess your eligibility across all scholarships available. There were 44 scholarship recipients at University College in 2022, which is an impressive number in relation to the size of the cohort, so it is highly recommended that you submit an application if you require financial support. If you’re from a rural region of Australia, there are two major scholarships that you can be considered for in 2023.


All the colleges require students to interview as part of the application process, however don’t let the term ‘interview’ scare you. At UC, the interview is really just a casual conversation between you and one of the staff over Zoom. You will be asked a few questions that might get you thinking, however don’t focus on providing an answer that you think the interviewer wants to hear, but rather be your genuine self. We are more focused on getting to know you and if you are the right fit for University College, rather than testing how well you interview.

Once you receive an offer from the college of your choice, make sure you accept as soon as possible so you can be guaranteed a spot. You can also defer your college place if you decide to defer university.

Applications for 2023 are open now and interviews are offered as the applications are received. Apply soon to get your place locked in!

Any questions, reach out to our Registrar.