International Students

Australia offers international students the freedom to choose a study pathway that suits your goals with thousands of courses available. Studying in Australia promotes innovation, creativity and independent thinking. The following is a brief step by step guide for international students on studying in Australia. For further information on the six steps to studying in Australia please visit the Study in Australia website.

Step 1: Planning your Study

What kind of study are you interested in?

  • University
  • Vocational education and training
  • Schools
  • English language training.

What field of education are you interested in?

  • Universities offer both undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the fields of agriculture, business, economics, education, environmental science, engineering, health sciences, humanities and social sciences, information technology, law, mathematics, computing, medicine, science and visual/performing arts.
  • Vocational education and training institutions offer courses which focus on practical career orientated skills such as business, computing, marketing, tourism and hospitality.
  • All Australian schools offer English, mathematics, science, arts, technology and languages. Some schools also offer such subjects as digital media, agriculture, graphic design, music and accountancy.
  • Australia offers a range of English language courses that are tailored to all levels of competency from beginner students to advanced. It also offers teacher training.

Step 2: Selecting a Course

Once you have chosen which field you would like to study in you will need to find out which institutions offer the course/s you are interested in. All registered providers of international study options and their courses are listed on the Australian Government’s register, the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS).   You should use this website to find an institution and appropriate course. You should also keep in mind any entry requirements for your chosen course.

Step 3: Applying for Admission

Once you have chosen your preferred course and institution you need to complete an application form. The institution will then make an assessment of your suitability to undertake the course. If they determine your application as suitable you will be made an offer of a place for enrolment and be provided with a written agreement.

Students should not make education choices solely on the basis of hoping to achieve a particular migration outcome as Australia’s migration policy will continue to change and adapt to Australia’s economic needs.

If you are successful in gaining a student visa this will entitle you to come to Australia on a temporary basis for a specified period to undertake study.

The institution will assess your application and supporting documents and advise if you meet the entry requirements and will be admitted. You may be required to pay tuition fees before applying for the student visa. The institution will advise you of its requirements but generally it will require payment of at least one semester of course fees.

Step 4: Applying for a Visa

Before you can apply for a visa, you should get a letter of offer confirming you have successfully gained a place from the institution you applied for.

International students must have a valid student visa for the duration of their studies in Australia. You should check with the Australian Embassy in your country to see if you are eligible to apply for a student visa before obtaining official confirmation of your enrolment and paying tuition fees. You will only be issued with a student visa for study in Australia if you seek to undertake a full-time course that is accredited and registered by the Australian Government. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) also has offices in many countries. You can check the DIAC website for locations.

If your application is successful you will be issued with a Multiple Entry Visa allowing you to travel backwards and forwards to Australia within the period for which the visa has been granted. That period will depend on the course for which you have been accepted. Your visa can be cancelled if you discontinue your studies or fail to meet the conditions of your visa.

Step 5: Pre-departure

Before making final preparations for your trip, ensure your student visa is granted.
The institution in which you have enrolled will send you a confirmation of enrolment and an information package. This package is very important because it contains information in your selected course, your accommodation options and important events that you should attend during your first weeks of study. It may include information about the:

  • city you are going to
  • the climate
  • clothing requirements
  • information about local customs
  • shopping facilities
  • accommodation
  • transport
  • banking
  • mail and telephone services
  • estimated cost of living
  • amount of money you should bring with you when you first arrive
  • arrangements for your welcome and settling-in period
  • the date by which you are expected to arrive.

Unless you are being supported by an agent you will have to purchase your air tickets.

Step 6: Arrival and Reception

At some stage during your flight to Australia you will be handed an Incoming Passenger Card to fill in. Answer the questions accurately and truthfully, especially those about the items in your luggage that you may have to declare to Customs officials.

Once you land, you will follow the signs to an Immigration check-point. Here, you will need to show your passport, visa and Incoming Passenger Card. You may also have to show your Confirmation of Enrolment. Once you have cleared this checkpoint you will enter the baggage hall where you can claim your luggage and proceed to Customs and baggage examination.

If you have made prior arrangements, the institution in which you have enrolled will send someone to meet you at the airport and take you to your accommodation.

You will receive orientation at your institution by the international officer. They will introduce you to the institution’s rules and regulations and help you decide on your timetable.
It is important to comply with Australian student visa conditions for the duration of your stay. Under Government legislation students who break their visa conditions will face mandatory visa cancellation.

For further information on International Education please visit the Australian Education International website