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About the STUDENT Visa

The first quarter of 2016/17 has seen some significant changes in the temporary visa framework, starting with the major restructuring of the Student visa programme which took place on the first day of the new financial year.

Effective from 1st July 2016, the Simplified Student Visa Framework (SSVF) reduced the number of subclasses from 8 to 2. The purpose of the revamp was essentially to streamline and reduce complexities of the student visa processing system, and to ensure widespread accessibility to Australian education.  Key features of the new framework include:

  • A Subclass 500 to apply to all chosen forms of study.
  • A Subclass 590 for student guardians.
  • Introduction of an immigration risk framework for all international students.
  • Financial and English language documentary requirements guided by a student’s country of citizenship + risk factor of the chosen education provider (EP).
  • A move towards online visa applications.

Since the implementation of the SSVF, there has also been an increased emphasis on the need to prove the Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) component, as an integrity measure to ensure that the programme is not used as an avenue of maintaining ongoing residency in Australia.   The GTE component requires visa applicants to provide justification for undertaking the course, considering factors such as career progression, personal and financial circumstances, and even the education framework available in their country of citizenship, as compared to that of Australia.

While the intent of the SSVF is ultimately, to streamline and simplify the student visa programme, alike all new systems, the transition hasn’t been entirely smooth. The complexities of the new system have resulted in, delays in the granting of visas and even a reported rise in the number of refusals.

As a student, it’s important that you start your career on the right path.  Consult with an Education Agent & Registered Migration Agent on the study options which best align to your circumstances and work with a trusted advisor, to ensure that your study plans are on the right track.

Features of the Visa

Student Visas allow international students to travel to and from Australia and live in Australia while they undertake a full-time course of study. There are many different courses an international student may enrol in, and it is possible to apply for permission to work part-time while studying.

It allows you & your family to live and work (Number of Hours vary depending on the conditions attached to your approved visa) in Australia on temporary visa.

In order to be eligible for a Student Visa, you must:

1. Be a Genuine Temporary Entrant - that is, the main purpose of your stay in Australia is to study rather than seek permanent residence in Australia.

2. Have been accepted into a full-time course CRISCOS registered with the Australian Government as being offered to international students. You will need to provide an Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (ECoE) with your visa application.

Have acceptable Overseas Student health insurance for yourself and any accompanying family members.

Have adequate funds to support yourself during your studies (course fees, living costs, school costs and travel costs). Unless you are enrolled in an approved degree-level course, you will need to show that you have access to funds for the first 18 months of your stay in Australia. This can be from one of the following sources:

  • A Money deposit held by you or a person supporting you
  • A loan from a financial institution or government in your home country
  • A scholarship from your education provider, Australian or overseas government, a business or multilateral agency

5. Note that this funding must have been in place for at least 3 consecutive months preceding your application.

6. You may be required to sit for the IELTS test of English language ability before your application will be approved.

English language requirements

Australian universities & colleges accept both IELTS & PTE scores as a proof of English proficiency. The following guideline for IELTS/PTE score is just an approximation, each University or institute will have their own benchmark score for their respective courses.
ProgrammsEnglish Test Score
Diploma programsIELTS - Overall band score of 5.5 with no band less than 5.0 PTE – Overall 45; no less than 36
Bachelor’s DegreeIELTS - Overall band score of 6.0; no less than 5.5 PTE – Overall 50; no less than 45
Graduate DiplomaIELTS - Overall band score of 6.5; no less than 6.0 PTE – Overall 6.5; no less than 50
Master ProgramsIELTS - Overall band score of 6.5; no less than 6.0 PTE – Overall 6.5; no less than 50

7. You will also have to meet Australian health and character requirements

8. You must not have any outstanding debts to the Commonwealth of Australia.


Risk ratings apply to different education providers and to different passport countries.

Depending on the combination of your passport country and the education provider, you will either need to meet:

  • Regular Evidentiary Requirements: in this case you would need to provide evidence of English language ability and finances
  • Streamlined Evidentiary Requirements: evidence of English language ability or finances not generally required


A student visa permits multiple entries to Australia and to remain in Australia for the duration of the course.

The following conditions will be imposed on the visa:

8202 You must maintain enrolment in a registered course, and meet the course academic requirements.

8533 You must notify your education provider or your address in Australia, any change of address or any change of education provider.

8105 Once you begin your course of study you can work for up to 40 hours each fortnight during semester. No work limits apply during recognised periods of vacation offered by your education provider.

8104 Members of your family unit can work 40 hours per fortnight throughout the year, for the duration of their visa.

The following conditions may apply in some circumstances:

8534 This is a 'no further stay' condition. This means that after entering Australia you will not be entitled to be granted any other visa while you remain in Australia (apart from a Graduate-Skilled Visa, or a protection visa). This condition is imposed in all cases for assessment level 3 where the course is for 10 months or less

8535 If you are sponsored by the Commonwealth of Australia or the government of your home country, you may be subject to a 'no further stay' condition. This means that after entering Australia you will not be entitled to be granted any other visa while you remain in Australia (apart from a further student visa with permission to work, a further student visa with the consent of your sponsor, or a protection visa.)

10. There are other conditions that may be imposed on your visa. It is important that you understand the conditions that may be attached to your visa as if you do not comply with any of the conditions it may be cancelled.

Migration Hub's Expertise

Migration Hub has a significant amount of experience in assisting students from overseas (Level 3 and Level 2 countries) to be enrolled in the courses best suited for their career path related to their past qualifications and experiences and goal in life. Migration hub also assists in helping students to get admission in the colleges and Universities they want based on their preference and course selection pathways.

Please contact us info@migrationhub.com.au or +61447081570 to obtain further details on applying for a student visa.