The Australian Government provides an opportunity to all international students to study in the country but as a prerequisite, you’ll have to obtain a student visa first. The visa you need will depend on your age, the type of study you want to pursue, and how long you want to stay in Australia. As an international student, you would most commonly require a student (subclass 500) visa, regardless of your field of study.
Student visa (subclass 500)
Since July 1, 2016, a student subclass 500 visa lets you stay in Australia for the duration of your study program, which is mostly up to five years. It is important for you to ensure that your visa remains valid and you abide by the conditions as mentioned on your student visa. You can read up in detail about student visa on the Australian Government’s Department of Home Affairs website.
Documents required for an Australian student visa
When applying for your student visa for Australia, you will generally need:
- Proof of enrolment (your electronic confirmation of enrolment)
- A valid passport
- Your visa application fee
- Your Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) statement
- Academic and work experience documents
- Evidence of your English proficiency skills (book your place in the IELTS test)
- Evidence of financial ability (tuition fees, living expenses, expenses for dependents, return airfare)
- Details of your health insurance policy (Overseas Student Health Cover )
- Statement of purpose
- Passport sized photographs
If you are under 18 years of age, you will also need to provide additional documents such as parental consent.
*Please note that these are the basic requirements, speak with your IDP counsellor for a detailed list of documents required for visa processing
Applying for your visa online
You will need to create an account using DIBP’s online application system – ImmiAccount to complete and submit your student visa application. You can also track the status of your visa through ImmiAccount once you have submitted it. You should submit your application no later than six weeks before your course starts, and no earlier than 12 weeks.
As an applicant from outside Australia, you will have to pay AUD 575 as your visa fee (do check the latest fee at https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/visa-pricing-estimator#tab-content-1 ).
English language requirements
To gain your Australia student visa, you’ll have to provide with an evidence of proficiency in the English language. This usually means passing a secure English language test to be able to prove your communication and correspondence skills.
The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is the world’s most popular high-stakes English language proficiency test for study, work and migration, with more than three million tests taken in the past year. The IELTS results are recognised by more than 10,000 organisations, including educational institutions, employers, professional associations and governments, in 140 countries around the world.
Making sure your visa remains valid
Once you get your visa, there are a number of things you need to do to ensure it remains valid, including:
- Remain enrolled and maintain satisfactory course progress and attendance
- Provide your Australian address to your university or college so they can contact you (don’t forget to let them know if you move)
- Continue to be able to financially support yourself while in Australia
- Don’t breach the working conditions that apply to your visa
If you want to change your qualification level you will need to apply for a new student visa.
You can always book a free consultation with one of our friendly immigration consultants who will guide you on how to go about the entire visa application process.