Once uni offers start coming in and you’ve got to make a decision about which uni is right for you, it might seem like the only thing left to help with your decision is writing a pros and cons list. So, we did it for you!
Meet Alaa. She studied a Bachelor of Commerce at Macquarie, majoring in Marketing Management and she was nice enough to give us an inside scoop of the course.
Let’s see what she had to say!
Why should you study a Commerce degree at Macquarie University?
While Alaa is mostly speaking about her experiences in Marketing Management here, we think her point kind of speaks to our favourite part of this program.
The Bachelor of Commerce at Macquarie is a very comprehensive Commerce degree. You may have your major, but you’ll find that all of the subjects relate back to each other.
Essentially what we’re saying is, there are 13 different majors, but each student will end up having a good holistic basis in the commerce field in general. This is because the course includes core units in a range of different subjects (Finance, Economics, Accounting etc.). And, as Alaa said, the majors will also lend themselves to these other Commerce fields.
In short, you should study this course if you’re interested in getting a holistic education in not only your major, but in all things business related.
Top 3 Pros of a Commerce degree
#1: You’ll score some technical skills
Commerce is a pretty broad area, encompassing fields from Marketing to Finance. For students in areas that mostly require soft skills over technical ones, like Marketing, gaining some technical skills can be a real plus.
“One of the greatest things you learn from the degree is Excel. if you really put in the effort, you’ll properly learn how to use it by the end of the degree,” explains Alaa. Excel skills will definitely give you a competitive edge over graduates of other programs that don’t have any computational-based analytical skills.
#2: Industry experience is the course’s DNA
All Macquarie courses come with a compulsory ‘PACE’ (Professional And Community Engagement) unit — Macquarie University Commerce is no exception. They’re units that incorporate a practical component, where you work with one of Macquarie’s industry partners.
“PACE units are put into place to give you a better idea of what to expect in the industry. One of my PACE units was to connect with a real company and to give a presentation to them based on their product,” says Alaa.
She adds, “PACE is delivered quite differently to everything else — it has a practical aspect and more of an individual aspect too. Your teachers will be there to guide you but you mostly do everything alone.”
#3: It’s a highly collaborative course
According to Alaa, if there’s one thing you’ll be doing a lot of, it’s group work. This is a big pro for us because it’s great training for the real world. Once you start working after uni, you’ll find that working in the business field is basically just one big group project.
“Commerce is one of the few degrees at Macquarie where things are taught differently. Most of the classes do end up being taught as lectures and tutorials, but there is a much more collaborative aspect to it. So if that is something that you enjoy, like me, then I highly recommend doing a Commerce degree at Macquarie,” she explains.
Top 3 Cons of a Commerce degree
#1: The core units might not exactly be what you signed up for
While the skills you gain from the core units will be invariably useful, they may also require a lot more work than your major, simply because it isn’t what you’re used to. This can end up being a little bit stressful and maybe overwhelming.
“Some of the core units, for me, were a little bit of a struggle only because they weren’t really what I wanted to do; my focus was marketing. There was a mathematical component that I wasn’t expecting […] it wasn’t impossible though, I was able to get through them without a mathematical background but I did have to put in quite a bit more effort,” recounts Alaa.
#2: PACE units could be a little more practical
The compulsory PACE course is a good unit, don’t get us wrong. It’s just that it is definitely not enough to account for all the industry experience you will need to be job ready.
Alaa says, “PACE is definitely interesting, but it doesn’t give you as much industry experience as I would like to say it does.”
She then went on to explain that going on to do some extra, non-compulsory PACE units is definitely a good idea, “I also did a supplementary PACE internship by choice, which was much more useful.”
#3: The course content is not super realistic
This one may come as a little bit of a surprise, but it’s actually quite common for undergraduate degrees. Bachelor’s degrees can tend to be a little bit more theoretical than practical, which means that you’ll definitely need to do an internship to truly understand the necessary skills that come with working in the real world.
“Like pretty much every other university degree, the content doesn’t 100% mirror what you would be doing in a real life context in the industry,” says Alaa.
“I wish that I had studied Maths beforehand just to make those core units a little bit easier.” She explains. In saying that, we definitely recommend that you take relevant Math subjects while in your HSC, or to take the opportunity to do an entry level Math course during your first semester of uni.
Or even better, you could get help from one of our experienced tutors to give you all the help you need!
What do you wish you had known before starting Macquarie University Commerce?
“That statistics is nowhere near as easy as it sounds,” she says. And once again, we recommend that little bit of Math study before you start.
In this course, stats is unavoidable — particularly in first year. An essential unit is Business Statistics which will involve using Excel, as Alaa has mentioned before and having to interpret and analyse data. It’s also a contact-heavy unit with not just lectures and tutes, but practical classes too!
So if you really want to do well, make sure you actually come to all of your stats classes.
What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities?
“Its amazing faculty. Because the Business faculty is the biggest at Macquarie they pour a lot of resources into it and they train their staff really well. You can always rely on the advice that you are given by the faculty and I know that they will always get back to me with useful information,” Alaa explains.
You can learn more about the Macquarie Business School here!
What inspired you to choose Macquarie University Commerce?
“I actually didn’t know that I wanted to study marketing. I started in a Bachelor of Arts and ended up really enjoying the marketing units that I was taking, and I’m actually really happy that I made the decision to switch over. Like I said, even the units you don’t really care about doing will end up counting later on, whether that’s in your degree or in real life,” she says.
What are the possible career paths?
Truthfully, a Bachelor of Commerce could amount to a whole truck load of different careers.
It’s a very core course that still comes with a specific set of highly regarded skills, but just to give you an idea, here’s just a taste of the careers that a Bachelor of Commerce at Macquarie could lead to:
- Business analyst
- Economic policy advisor
- Financial analyst
- Human resource manager
- Management consultant
- Marketing professional
- Taxation consultant
Cody Williams is a Content Writer at Art of Smart Education. While Cody studied a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and French Studies at UNSW, he quickly realised that his dream job would have him sit happily behind a keyboard. Cody’s digital writing career started with an internship at Bauer Media where he was writing for ELLE and Harper’s BAZAAR’s online publications. Once he had a taste for writing he never looked back, moving to Brisbane soon later to work as a Producer for Channel Nine Queensland. After a year in television media, he dusted off his online writing shoes so he could put them to good use, stamping out some scorching-hot career and educational resources at AOS.