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Student visa in Australia

Student visa in Australia

With the student visa, international students will be able to study and train full time in Australia. This visa allows a student to stay in Australia for the duration of the corresponding course. The student must register, or have an offer letter, with an Australian education provider before applying for this visa.

You will be able to take an English course in Australia that lasts from 3 months to 2 years. Take an exam preparation program to train and take the TOEFL, IELTS or Cambridge.

You can also take a vocational course (VET) if you have an advanced command of English. With these programs, you can do technical studies in Australia for about a year. Another option is to enrol and study at an Australian university.

One of the advantages that the student visa offers is that you can study and work in Australia legally for 20 hours a week at the same time.

Frequent Questions

What can I study in Australia with a student visa?

Among the courses that you can take are:
Study English in Australia: In this country, you will find various English courses for all levels and purposes. You can start from scratch, or you can prepare for an official exam that certifies your command of the language. Generally, they are small teaching groups with a dedication of approximately 20 hours per week.
Intensive English Courses: These are general English courses that are taken in a few weeks and are special for those who will not be in Australia for long.
General English Courses: These are Australian English courses for each level, from beginner to advanced. In these are all aspects of learning such as reading, writing, speaking and listening.
Preparation for official exams: IELTS, Cambridge, TOEFL
Study a vocational course in Australia
This type of vocational courses also known as VET, are technical courses focused on different professional areas. These are divided into trimesters with a minimum duration of 6 months and class attendance of 2-3 days a week. These vocational courses will allow you to train in the professional field handling English while facilitating you to combine training with work.
Study a TAFE course in Australia
TAFE (Technical & Further Education) courses are courses similar to VETs with the difference that they are publicly owned. These are usually of better quality but more expensive. These types of courses are taken by most Australian students, as opposed to international students. A higher level of English is required to be able to take them.
Study at university in Australia
Australia has a wide variety of universities and campuses in various parts of the country. In each of its universities, you can find various undergraduate and graduate courses.
Regarding requirements and costs, an academic year at an Australian university can cost from AUD 20,000 per year, without taking into account living costs. Although it is a quality option, it is expensive. Unless you have a scholarship or an interuniversity agreement with your university in your home country.
Scholarships to study in Australia
This is an option for those who want to study at a university but do not have as much budget. One of the best-known scholarships is the Endeavor Scholarship, which offers aid every year to pursue VET or TAFE studies as well as undergraduate studies of a maximum duration of 2 years.
You have many study options in Australia. You can also combine the courses you want to create a study plan. For example, you can study an English course and then a preparation course for IELTS or Cambridge.
At the time of obtaining this visa, you will be able to live and work in Australia for the duration of your course, which can be from three months to four years.

Requirements to apply for a student visa for Australia

If you are determined to travel to Australia on a student visa, these are the requirements you must meet:
• The cost of this visa is approximately $620 AUD.
• Have your valid passport, which must be valid throughout your stay.
• Be enrolled in a course of study in Australia
• At the time of enrolment, you will obtain a code which certifies that you are already enrolled in an institution certified by the Australian Government, this you must present.
• Show that you have sufficient funds to cover your expenses (and those of your family. This does come with you) during your stay in Australia.
• Have health coverage for students abroad (OSHC), or be in one of the exemption categories. Make sure the coverage is in effect during your entire stay.
• Show that you have a welfare agreement if you are a minor of 18 years old.
• Write a Genuine Temporary Entrant. This is a letter where you explain to the Immigration authorities your reasons for wanting to come to study in Australia.
• Present a certificate of your criminal record.
• Depending on the course you are taking, prove that you have a fluent level of English.
• According to your nationality, you must undergo medical tests that demonstrate your good health.

What should go in the Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) or letter of intent?

As part of your student visa application, the department will assess whether you are actually staying in Australia temporarily, so you will need to write a personal statement in English that addresses the GTE requirements. If you are not comfortable writing it in English, you can write it in your own language and send a translated copy with your application.
To prove this, you need to show as evidence:
Previous study
• Academic records showing the grades obtained.
• Name of education providers.
• Duration of studies.
• Certificates of achievement.
A gap in the previous studies
Reasons why there is a gap in your studies, even when you did not maintain enrollment.
Current job
• Your current employer.
•Company address.
• Length of time you have been working.
• Details of your position.
• The name and contact details of someone who can confirm the circumstances of your employment.
Links to the country of origin or country of residence
• Evidence of economic, family or social ties. You must show that they have strong reasons for returning home. This is very important since you can show the financial situation of your family in the country of origin through bank accounts, if they have a business, a house, etc.
• Provide a list of your family members and other social ties (friends, former co-workers, etc.)
The economic situation in the country of origin or the country of residence
• Documents showing that you have a job or business for 12 months before applying.
• Possible job offers, including salary and other benefits, after completion of the course.
• Tax return or bank statements.
This GTE requirement identifies applicants who use the student visa program for reasons other than obtaining a quality education.
You must include as much information and evidence as possible in your GTE statement so that the Department will have a complete view of your situation.

How is the application process?

1. Choose a course and school: In Australia, there are many study options, where you can take into account prices, levels and of course quality. You must know which educational institutions offer what you are looking for and if it fits your plans and budget. You can combine courses consecutively with the same visa. That is, you can start with an English course in an academy and then take a technical course or prepare for access to the university, so you should know if you meet the requirements that other types of courses demand.
2. Register for a school. Once you choose the school, you must go through the registration process. Some schools will ask you for some requirements to be able to make your registration effective:
-English level.
-Evidence of economic funds.
-Proof of completed studies that are related to the course you want to take.
– A letter that explains the reasons why you want to do this course.
3. Make the first payment: Once the school accepts your enrolment application, you must make the first major disbursement of money. You will have to make a first initial payment corresponding to:
• Payment of the first part of your course: Generally, the first 3 months of the course are paid in advance to reserve your place. This depends on the course you choose and the payment facilities the school has.
• Payment of the registration or registration fee: This is usually a payment of about $200 – $250 AUD.
• Payment of course materials: This corresponds to books and/or materials provided by the school to be able to take the courses.
• Once the first payment has been made to the school, it will issue the CoE (Confirmation of Enrolment), a document that certifies that your enrolment has been formalised.
• If you have decided to split the payment and make a payment plan, remember to take into account the dates for the next payments.
4. Apply for the student visa: With your course already booked, we will prepare and present your visa application to the Department of the Interior (DOHA). The main criterion is that you meet the requirements mentioned above.
Once the DOHA grants you the visa, you will be able to live in Australia to take your course until it ends.

Can I work in Australia while I study?

Yes, you can work in Australia with a student visa, which will allow you to legally work 40 hours a week (20 hours a week) while you are taking a course.
Additionally, during the holiday season, students can work full time.
Take into account the following conditions:
• 8104 – Labour restriction: You can only work up to 40 hours in fifteen days.
• When you start working, the employer may ask you for Evidence that your course has started (such as confirmation or enrolment or a letter from the corresponding education provider).
• If you are a member of the household of a principal student visa holder, you should not work in Australia until their course has started.
• Family members of students studying for a master’s or doctoral degree can work without restrictions once the holder of the main student visa has started their course.
• If you are a relative of a main student visa holder, and you are going to work, your employer may request:
– Proof of relationship (such as visa grant letter, marriage or birth certificate).
– Evidence that the primary student visa holder has already started their course (such as a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) or a letter from the relevant education provider).
• Work experience is included in a student’s work restriction of 40 hours per fortnight, whether paid or unpaid.
* There is an exception: Where a unit of work experience forms a required component of a student’s course and is listed in the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Foreign Students (CRICOS) of record for that course. In this circumstance, work experience will not be included in the student’s 40-hour biweekly work restriction.

As the holder of a student visa, you can consider yourself to have worked if you have:
• Attended a workplace for a period using a list or timesheet (but not during unpaid breaks).
• You have ‘registered’ in an electronic system that records a work activity.
• You received payment for the work, as shown on a payment receipt you have received.
• You can have more than one job as long as the total hours do not exceed 40 in a fortnight.

A course is in session:
-According to the school semesters (includes exam periods).
-If you take another course that will count towards your main course during the semester break.

You can only work more than 40 hours per fortnight when:
• It is a registered part of your course that is mandatory
• You have started your master’s degree by research or doctorate
• Your course is not in session. A course is not in session during scheduled course breaks.
• If your course was postponed or suspended by Standard 9 of the National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training for Foreign Students.
• If you have a valid visa and have completed your course as indicated in your registration confirmation.
• If your registration has been cancelled due to non-compliance by your education provider and until you obtain a new registration and start the course.
• Volunteer work: You can participate in volunteer work outside the 40 hour work limit per fortnight if it fits the volunteer job description.
When working legally in Australia, the labour rights that each migrant worker has must be understood. For information on pay rates, shift calculations, leave arrangements, and notice and termination rights, see the Payment and Terms Tool (PACT).

Does the student visa require me to have health insurance (OSCH) in Australia?

Yes, it is one of the requirements of the student visa. This is mandatory health insurance that all international students must have before travelling to Australia and is known as Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC).
When you have a student visa, you must take out OSHC health insurance throughout your stay in Australia, so you must find out if the insurance company is certified and authorised by the Australian Government.
What is covered by medical insurance in Australia will depend entirely on the company you hire. However, all companies cover all types of emergencies:
100% of medical consultations as long as their value does not exceed that of social security in Australia (Medicare Benefits Schedule fee).
Medical treatment as an outpatient in a hospital or by a specialist doctor in a private practice anywhere in Australia. Up to 100% of the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS).
You can be treated as a patient in a public or private hospital. When entering a hospital, you will be covered in most cases in:
* Accommodation for stays of one night or the same day.
* Operating room, intensive care and maternity area for deliveries.
* Pharmaceuticals approved by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and provided as part of your treatment in the hospital.
* Health services including physical therapy, occupational therapy and diet.
* Most Medicare-recognized diagnostic tests, such as pathology and radiology.
* Surgically implanted prostheses approved on the Government Prosthetics List.

Here are some OSHC providers licensed by the Australian Government:
• ahm OSHC
• BUPA Australia
• Medibank Private
• Allianz global support
• CBHS International Health
You should know that to obtain your student visa you must contract a student medical insurance that covers you throughout your stay. This type of service has rates from 45 AUD per month.

How to extend your Student Visa in Australia

It often happens that many of the international students travelling to Australia do not know that they can renew their student visa once their course ends. For this reason, if you are already here or plan to come to Australia, you should know that you have the possibility of continuing to live an incredible experience while you study.

What options do you have to renew your Student Visa in Australia?

There are different alternatives that you can take into account when you want to continue your studies in Australia. Whether you want to reinforce your learning in the English language or take a new course to complement the studies you already have.

You can also decide to pursue another university degree, study a technical career or pursue a master’s degree. Depending on the plans you have for the future, you should analyse the advantages and disadvantages of the course you are going to take.

An example would be a Diploma, which has an affordable cost with which you could extend your student visa in Australia for one year. Whereas if you choose a master’s degree, you will be taking a much more expensive course; but this one will give you many more benefits.

Not only is it the level that the master’s degree will give to your curriculum, but it will also allow you to study for two years and at the end, you will have the possibility of applying for a Graduate Visa; which will give you 24 more months of visa, and you can work full time. 

Steps to extend your Student Visa in Australia

When you have decided what type of course to take, you will need to research the institutions and their offers, this if you want to change your educational institution or simply want to explore another city.

To carry out your research, you can enter the CRICOS website, which is a search engine for courses for international students, which are authorised by the Australian Government.

This is a very useful and complete tool that will allow you to search by institution, field of study and state of Australia in which you are interested in studying. You will be able to see the approximate price of the course you want to take, in this way you can make a budget.

Documents that you must present to renew your Student Visa

To start the process of renewing your student visa, you must meet certain requirements, so before making the application you must collect all the relevant documents. This documentation may vary depending on your passport (country) and the institution you have chosen. However, for most international students these are the documents they must present: 

  • A new letter of Confirmation of Enrolment (COE, as it is usually known), issued by the educational institution where you will complete/start your studies.
  • Health insurance (OSHC), which will cover you until the expiration date of your new Student Visa in Australia.
  • Your Letter of Intent (GTE), in which you argue with the Department of Home Affairs, what are your intentions when studying in Australia.
  • Evidence that you have the financial resources to support yourself in Australia during your stay.
  • Your passport.

To have greater clarity in the documentation that you must present, you can enter the Document Checklist Tool provided by the Department of Home Affairs.

At Visado we want you to fulfil your dream of migrating to Australia, that is why we will advise you regarding the application of your visa. This way you will have the security that your immigration process will be carried out in the best possible way.

Tourist visa

If you want to travel to Australia on vacation, you will need a tourist visa to enter the country.

Learn More

Working Holiday visa

The Australian Government offers a limited number of Work and Holiday visas to young people of different nationalities who wish to live and work in Australia for some time.

Learn More

Working Visa

With the correct skills and qualifications Australia needs, you can apply to the General Skilled Migration (GSM) program.

Learn More


  • It has been a pleasant experience working with Visado throughout the visa application process. From the first moment I spoke with them, I did not doubt that I was in the best hands to achieve what I always dreamed of.

    Dario Aristizabal
  • Visa, without a doubt, was the best choice I made, and I recommend your services with my eyes closed. Thanks to your support I was able to come to improve my English with a student visa. I only have words of thanks for all the support I received from my immigration agent.

    Julia Ortiz
  • Thanks to the help of Visado I have been able to make my dream of preparing professionally come true. When I obtained my student visa I started a preparation course to certify my English, and then I renewed my visa to do a master’s degree, With this degree, I was able to apply with the advice of Visado to a Post Graduate. 100% recommended.

    Oscar Cadena

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