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Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, Austria

The facilities at the Academy of Fine Arts are fantastic. The entire year group only consists of 25 people, so you end up becoming very close with your classmates as well as the students in all the other years. This for me was great as you were definitely known by all the teachers and you were able to get very individualised feedback on your work. I surprisingly had to take more courses than expected as the Studio class was equivalent to a single course at UTS and the rest of the courses were worth a third of a single course, so I had 6 courses to do for only 3 courses at UTS. Also just my studio class consisted for 12 hours spread over 3 days, so I am currently going into the academy every day of the week.

Although it has been a lot of work so far, I love the method of teaching, which has been one that is very supportive and welcoming, there is also no strict guidelines on assignments as they want you to produce the best work you can and are aware that everyone works at a different pace. Also the class that I am in has been really helpful in showing me around, we are always working late in the studio they are always keen to go out for dinner and drinks after class.

One of the great parts about Vienna is definitely the nightlife and general ‘night culture’. Every cafe becomes a bar at night and still serves coffee which is almost unheard of in Sydney, also because there are a lot less restrictions ‘generally’ in Vienna, so people definitely take advantage of this and use the night time to express themselves and have fun. Also, as there is in most capital cities, the food options here are amazing and the students here are the best people to talk to for good cheap food.

I am living in OEAD Housing which has been one of the most popular options for the exchange students here. If you are travelling here by yourself I would definitely recommend it as you are able to also choose to live with housemates, which although might seem stressful to live with strangers, it is really nice to come home to a house with people in it, especially if you are use to living with people.

So overall the experience so far has been fantastic. You will definitely feel the ups and downs at the start as you get yourself grounded, for myself travelling to a country where I didn’t speak the first language has been fairly exhausting, but it has pushed me to want to learn languages more and everyone here speaks English quite well, especially within the Academy.

Matthew Peate
Bachelor of Design in Architecture
Academy of Fine Arts Vienna

For more information about the UTS Global Exchange program please visit:

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