New UOW courses dilute commerce interest

The University of Wollongong’s bachelor of commerce degree has the largest undergraduate cohort for 2014, but the course has also experienced the most significant drop in first-year enrolments.

There are 427 first-year students enrolled in the degree, down from 479 last year and 570 in 2012.

A university spokesman said the fall in enrolments had been expected, after an increase in the number of students pursuing a bachelor of business, available since 2012, and the introduction of bachelor of accounting and financial services and bachelor of banking and financial services degrees.

Almost 5000 first-years will begin their studies at UOW this year. As of Thursday, there were 4282 domestic students and 305 onshore international students starting an undergraduate degree across the university’s five faculties.

The bachelor of commerce remains one of the most popular course among new students, along with bachelors of arts, nursing, engineering, science and primary education, each with more than 200 starting students.

Although their first-year groups are smaller, the bachelors of creative arts and business have had the largest rises in enrolments this year.

The majority of new students come from the Illawarra, but the spokesman said there had been an increase in students from regional and country areas selecting UOW as their tertiary institution of choice.

More than 1900 students are living in university residences this year, and over half are new students. There are 360 students living in the university’s newest accommodation, in Kooloobong Village, on the western boundary of the main campus. Completed last year, the building is planned and run based on the principles of ‘‘positive psychology’’.

UOW’s autumn semester begins on Monday for all students.

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