Australian Education

Australian Visa Guide for International Students

Today, we are going to learn and know everything about a student visa for Australia. The requirements, formalities before applying for a student visa for different countries, and a lot more. You will learn about the Australian Visa in particular. You probably have got an admission to top Australian university and need further information to get Visa. The visa guide that you are going to go through today, contains a whole lot of information. Not just the benefits, you will also learn to know the limits of a student visa and factors that are mandatory to know.

What is Student Visa and how is it helpful in Australia?

A student visa is a mandatory asset for a student. It allows the student to get permission to study in a foreign country. All the countries have different criteria for visa application. Every country has its own set of rules and regulations that are necessary to follow.

Only after confirming that the respective person meets all their criteria and adheres to the protocol set by the country, a person might get the visa allowance. Getting a student visa has its own limitation. It should not be considered that you will get any ownership or acquire citizenship in the country.

There are other limitations as well. Being a student, you cannot work full-time jobs in the country. You have permission to work part-time jobs, which is necessary too. If you want an allowance to work part-time with a student visa, you can apply for an F1 visa with which you will be able to work in an on-campus job. 

There is no way you can work for more than 20 hours a week. If you work for more than 20 hours a week, you have to attend questioning and there are chances, your passport might go for a re-evaluation. 

Requirements for Australian Student Visa

There has been a lot of changes made recently in visa guidelines for Australia. If you are intending to apply for an Australian visa, you must carefully read all the guidelines and instructions thoroughly. 

There are no lengthy protocols in visa processing. Simplified Student Visa Framework (SSVF) is a new system for visa processing.

The department of immigration and border protection department has collectively initiated this process. If you are applying for a student visa, you must apply under the subclass 500 student visa. Earlier to this date, the student visa application used to come under different subclasses. The subclass 571 and subclass 576 falls under the subclass 500. 

Department of home affairs has introduced this criterion and you must be able to prove your eligibility in order to get a student visa in Australia. There are a lot of formalities for the application of a student visa. You will be asked to attend an interview and pay for the application fee. The criteria for the formalities have been listed in the below points. 

  • There is a term introduced for the students who are applying for a student visa for the first time. It is known by the name GTE i.e genuine temporary entrant. It was introduced in November 2011. 
  • This criteria created by the department of home affairs will be followed by you. You should be able to prove that your intentions to apply for a student visa in genuine in all kinds. 
  • You can apply for it in the name of a student, student accompanies or guardian to a student. Department of home affairs will scrutinize all the details of you to make sure you don’t possess any threat to fabrics of their country rules and law. You should abide by all the laws of the country. 
  • There are certain factors that will be scrutinized such as your immigration history, your circumstances in your home country or your potential circumstances that could occur in Australia and most importantly the scope and reason for you to choose the specific course in your future. 
  • The first step is to fill the form, attend the interviews conducted the embassy of Australian and payment of the application fee. 

Great financial standing increase your chances to get Australian visa

When you aspire to study in a different country, you have to make sure you have enough financial support for college fee, travel expenditure and living costs. The authorities of Australia will make sure if you have that much support, only then you will be allowed to enter into the provision of Australia. 

Apart from your tuition fee and travel expenditure, you should have the minimum amount to support your living costs and that will be evaluated by the department of home affairs. You have to prove that you have sufficient amount to support yourself through all the expenditures during the time you stay in the country. 

Last year, 2018 the guidelines for minimum financial requirement has been revised. You should have approximately $20,000 AUD to confirm your eligibility. If you are accompanied by someone such as your spouse, friend or guardian, you must ensure the same financial support for them too. 

Also, you must also show evidence that your family is willing to support you through all the expenditures. Your family income must be proven to have at least $60,000 at least to confirm you can support your living in the country hassle-free. 

English proficiency – As inconsequential it might feel but it is mandatory to be proficient enough to speak fluent English. You will be asked to attend exams to certify that your command over the English language is strong. Strong enough to communicate and express your thoughts clearly at any circumstances. 

It is also important for your education. If you are a student, you can’t expect to learn and comprehend the classes and course syllabus if your language is not strong enough. The embassy of Australia will make sure of it, only then they will allow you to enter the country. 

You may land in top Australian University, but don't forget to prepare yourself for your first assignment at university, i.e. Reflective writing. Read our blog entry on reflective writing assignments.

If you are already in Australia and looking for budgeted travel destination in Australia for students, read article here. 

Health requirements

You will be inspected for your health. You will be asked to submit the paper that certifies that you are in good health and you do not possess any contagious disease. If you are having any such disease, it will become a problem for you to get permission for your visa. 

You will need to justify that you are not going to be in trouble for yourself or others because of an existing disease. The disease that you failed to get diagnosed in your home country or decided to skip. Once you are done with submitting the diagnosed papers, you will be asked to take cover for your health. 

There are many insurance agencies in Australia that can help you to get health insurance. You will be applying for health insurance while you are in the country provision. There are some departments to choose from. Overseas Students Health Care (OSHC) – Australian Health Management – BUPA Australia etc. 

You might also be interested in getting your cover from Medibank Private – Allianz Global Assistance. You can choose any of the agencies to purchase health insurance. The cost for your health insurance will differ depending upon the agencies and the time of cover you are planning to choose. 

Character Certificate – One of the most important requirements you must acquire to get the visa is your character certificate. Character certificate will include the ground-checks of you if you have any criminal background. If you have been substantially accused of any serious crime or have you had any criminal record or past. 

These certificates will be sanctioned by the embassy of Australia. A police officer will be sent to interview you and check your details for any record of crime. Then you will be asked to fill the form  – Character Statutory Declaration. 

What are the documents required for Australian visa processing

You can check out the information online to know the document requirements. The Department of Home Affairs has a website that contains the document consisting of the checklist. You can validate your documents criteria from the checklist. You can follow the list given below to ensure you have all the documents needed by the department of home affairs. 

  • The first thing you do is to fill the Australian Student Visa Application Form – 157A
  • Make the payment for the visa application form. It is expensive and would cost you between $600 – $650 approximately
  • You would be asked to submit a copy of your passport. You also might be asked to show your original passport in person. 
  • Enrolment Certificate
  • Financial Requirements should be fulfilled – You should provide evidence for that. 
  • You need to purchase and submit health insurance. 
  • You must submit the certificate of any clearance of your criminal record. 
  • Finally, you have to submit your latest passport size photos. 

Once you consolidate all your certificates and documents, you have to keep a scanned copy of each one of them. Then you apply online on the system for immigration account. You fill the form and upload the scanned copies of your documents and certificates. 

Your visa application is probably going to take a month for processing. If you have applied for a course that will take up to 10 months, it is probably going to end by the end of the year. Your visa will extend up to the month of March. If the course takes more than 10 months. It will probably end by the month of October. That means you will have up to 2 months of extension in the period. 

The pathways for visa application for different reasons have different forms and bifurcated in the respective class. You can check out the pathways that are used most basically in Australia. 

visa guide for international students

The visitor (Class FA) Subclass 600 

This is the kind of visa class that allows you to stay in the country as a visitor for a temporary purpose. You must prove the most important and basic criteria and that is the proof of your genuine intention to visit the country for business purposes or tourism purposes. Let us get deeper into the requirements of subclass 600.

  • You must satisfy all the criteria that need to the adhered for applying for the particular stream
  • As it has been mentioned earlier, you have to satisfy the criteria set to justify your genuine intentions to visit the country. The Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE).
  • You must provide enough evidence to justify that you have enough funds to take care of your travel expenditure and living costs. 
  • There are certain etiquettes and ethics followed by the locals of the country. You must be aware of those etiquettes issued in public interests so that you don’t get into any kind of trouble. 
  • Finally, You will submit your health certificate and the character certificate. 

Work and Holiday (Temporary) (Class U S) Subclass 462

This is a special type of visa sanctioned only for young professionals of a specific age from selective countries. This visa allows them you spend some holiday vacation time during their business visits. Let us get into the details of subclass 462.

  • First, you need to be of a specific age to apply for this visa. A legislative instrument is going to decide the eligibility of you apply for the visa. Your passport and age details will be scrutinized by them.
  • Just like any other visa, you should be able to demonstrate that you have access to enough money to take care of travel and living costs expenditure. 
  • You must meet the criteria set for justification of your stay. along with a genuine intentions of staying in the country. You will be only there to spend your vacation or holiday. 
  • Your English proficiency must be good. You should prove that your English is functional enough to easily communicate in the country. There is an exam known by the name IELTS. You can clear the exam and get certified. 
  • The country has set some basic educational qualifications criteria that you should possess to get the eligibility to stay in the country. You must meet that too.
  • There are two basic criteria – Public Interest Criteria and Special Return. You must fulfil them too. 
  • Finally, you hand over the health and criminal certificate. 

Student (Temporary) (Class TU) Subclass 500

There are some criteria to follow when you are applying for a student visa. First, you will need to acquire a certificate of enrolment or it is also called the letter of confirmation. Your chosen course will be registered from the commonwealth register of the institution you are applying. There will be a separate unique provided in your letter of enrollment that you will need to enter in the online form. 

You will have the privilege to change your course after you enter the institution. There are no formalities alter the courses similar to the currently chosen course or higher one. If you want to reduce the level of degree, you may require to fill the form again from the start. Also, you do not need to follow any formalities in you are willing to progress from the existing degree and pursue higher studies. 

Skilled Graduate Provisional Visa – Class VC – Subclass 485

This is a temporary class visa sanctioned for international graduates to visit Australia. The purpose of the visit could be living in the country for a short period of time. It could be for holiday purpose or for the purpose of studying. Let us get the details of sub-categories of subclass 485.

General Graduate Stream

  • You should have a student visa or you must have held a student visa in the last 6 months. 
  • You must justify your English proficiency. There are 4 components of the IELTS exam. You must score at least 4-5 out of 6 in each of the components. Only then your English will be accepted fluent and functional enough to survive in the country. 
  • Then you must fulfil the usual criteria of public interest and special return, character certificate, criminal certificate, health certificate and take a good cover for your health too. 
  • You can apply for the character certificate from the Australian Federal Police. 
  • Finally, there is a specific criterion set for the specific stream you are applying. You must meet those requirements too. 

Graduate Work Stream

  • There is a specific list that ensures your eligibility for graduate work stream. The list is called medium and long term strategic skilled list. You must have been successfully finished the criteria to have been enlisted. 
  • Another bench criteria are the Australian Study Requirement. You must have that qualification acquired in the last 6 months. 
  • Especially, your qualifications should abide by the specific occupation you are applying. It should relate to that. 
  • You must have acquired all the positive skill set required for the nominated occupation you are applying in. 

Post-Graduate Work Stream

  • You should have a student visa or you must have held a student visa in the last 6 months. 
  • You must justify your English proficiency. There are 4 components of the IELTS exam. You must score at least 4-5 out of 6 in each of the components. Only then your English will be accepted fluent and functional enough to survive in the country. 
  • You must possess a graduation certificate. You must hold a degree in bachelor degree (Honors), masters in coursework degree, Masters in research degree or Doctoral Degree.
  • Just like in the previous case, you must satisfy the Australian study requirement in the last 6 months. 

By Alex Walter

Alex Walter has been working as an academic consultant with for last one year. Alex holds a master degree in Psychology and currently on the verge of completion of PhD. With academic knowledge , Alex has guided many students in picking the right career choices. Alex also has a great experience in writing on academic topics