James Cook University

Townsville or Cairns, Queensland


University Location Townsville or Cairns, Queensland
Address 1 James Cook Drive, Douglas QLD 4814, Australia
Main Campus Townsville
City Population 190,000
Student Population 22,000
Int'l Student Population 6,640
Semester 1 Start February
Semester 2 Start July


Born for the Tropics
One of the world’s leading institutions focusing on the tropics, James Cook University is surrounded by the spectacular ecosystems of the rainforests of the wet tropics, the dry savannahs, and the iconic Great Barrier Reef. JCU’s unique location enables students to study in a diverse physical environment unparalleled by any university in the world.

The Academic Ranking of World Universities produced by the Shanghai Jiao Tong University ranks JCU in the top 2 percent of the world’s universities. JCU is dedicated to creating a brighter future for life in the tropics worldwide, through graduates and discoveries that make a difference.

JCU also recognizes their special obligation to be relevant to their own region and have forged close links into the economy and social fabric of the northern Queensland. The university is dedicated to ensuring that teaching, learning, and research is not only of high quality, but also delivers practical benefits to the peoples and industries of the region.

Why Study Here?

Canadian students at JCU love the fact that they can study exceptional professional degrees in a beautiful, natural environment. JCU programs are hands-on and academics work closely with industry leaders to ensure degrees prepare you for “real world” careers, especially those focused on rural and remote health.

Some of the most popular study areas among Canadian students include medicine, dentistry, law, nursing, occupational therapy, pharmacy, physiotherapy, public health, sciences, and teaching.

Location Details

JCU’s main campus is in Townsville, which is a thriving coastal city and port, and a stepping-off point for visiting the Great Barrier Reef. The resort regions of the Whitsunday Islands and Mission Beach are within easy reach.

JCU is in a tropical area, which has a regional setting as opposed to a big city setting. The population of the area reflects many university towns in Canada, and OzTREKK students enjoy the gorgeous, hot weather and the friendliness of Northern Queenslanders. The City of Townsville provides you with the feeling of a small-town atmosphere, yet there is plenty to see and do in and around the city. The campus is set in the bush and provides students the ability to relax while at school. As a smaller university, JCU staff members are approachable and friendly, and students enjoy the attention they receive upon arrival and throughout their program.

With more than 2 million visitors annually, Cairns is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Australia, and this is where JCU’s second largest campus is located. Attractions include two World Heritage natural environments – the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and the Wet Tropics ancient rainforests. Nearby resort regions include Port Douglas and Mission Beach, and the picturesque Atherton Tablelands and outback Queensland are within easy reach.

North Queensland is well known for embracing a safe and relaxed tropical lifestyle. Established Indigenous, European and Asian communities add to the cultural diversity of the region not usually found outside of the capital cities. Both Townsville and Cairns enjoy excellent tropical climates for most of the academic year including autumn, winter, and spring, and an average winter temperature of around 25°C. Yes, we said winter.


“I enjoy studying dentistry because it is something that I have always wanted to do”

I like university simply because I am taking a degree that I always wanted to take. Being able to go and learn new things every day is what I really enjoy about university. I am enjoying my program. I enjoy studying dentistry because it is something that I have always wanted to do. I also find the course material quite interesting.

JCU Australia Brandon K
Bachelor of Dental Surgery
James Cook University, 2019

“Dentistry students get access to home groups inside the dental building 24/7”

Yes, there's many fun events going on all the time to enjoy and also quiet areas to study! Dentistry students get access to home groups inside the dental building 24/7 and we can study there whenever, also there's a fridge and microwave available which is very helpful!! Overall, amazing facilities as well. [The program is] very hands on and I am learning heaps!

JCU Australia Ibadat S
Bachelor of Dental Surgery
James Cook University, 2019

“The program allows for a lot more clinical experience…”

The people are very kind and interesting. The program allows for a lot more clinical experience than other programs.

JCU Australia Gradon F.
James Cook University, 2018

“The Bachelor of Pharmacy program is really unique as it offers teaching to smaller classes and the teaching quality is amazing!”

I really love how James Cook University create event especially for international students, mainly the weekly Cafe International where everyone can have a chat and play board games while having free coffee! The Bachelor of Pharmacy program is really unique as it offers teaching to smaller classes and the teaching quality is amazing!

JCU Australia John Max M.
James Cook University, 2018

“I love my program.”

I love my program. The clinical skills part is the most intriguing aspect. Do not underestimate the workload, but also don’t let it swallow up your whole life. Balance is key. Also get to know others outside of the program. Being surrounded only by medical peers sometimes can be draining.

JCU Australia Cassandra C
James Cook University, 2018

“I like everything about the program”

I like everything about the program and the university. The only downside I have found is that it was different than getting education in North America and the standards are much higher. It is going well, I took to it fairly quickly though I still adapt to new things every day.

JCU Australia Daniel D
James Cook University, 2018

“…really prepares you for the field.”

I like the amount of clinical work they make you do which really prepares you for the field. The transitioning process is easier than expected and as long as one stays on top of the school work, it is also manageable.

JCU Australia Rama M
James Cook University, 2018

“Wish I did this sooner. ”

Excellent amount of clinical time! It is great! Wish I did this sooner.

JCU Australia Brock M
James Cook University, 2018

“You get to know all the staff on a first-name basis and are able to get lots of one-on-one help if needed”

The JCU pharmacy program is great and I really think it properly prepares you for the registration exams (both written and the oral OSCE).  It’s a fairly small program so you get to know all the staff on a first-name basis and are able to get lots of one-on-one help if needed. JCU always emphasized the importance of being both prepa... Read More

JCU Australia Jeremy W
Bachelor of Pharmacy
James Cook University, 2014