Australia Student Visa in 2022 Guide: Process, Requirements, Age Limit, and more!

A complete guide to the Australian Student Visa & Universities.

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What is an Australian Study Visa?

An Australian study visa is a temporary visa, that enables you to remain in Australia for the duration of your study.

Guidelines issued as per the notification and w.e.f. July 1, 2016, for the Australian Student Visa, have changed, and a Simplified Student Visa Framework (SSVF) has been initiated.

According to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, all international students planning to study in Australia are now required to apply for a visa under Subclass 500 and this effectively combines the erstwhile subclasses 571 – 576 into one.

Upcoming Intakes in Australia

Australian universities have two intakes every year:

  •  Intake 1: Extends from February/early March to late May/early June
  •  Intake 2: Extends from July/early August through to November

The first intake is usually treated as the main intake by most Indian students. The best thing to do is to prepare for the next upcoming intake.

Top 20 Universities in Australia 2022

Australia ranks as per the following among the Top 500 universities in the world, according to the QS World University Rankings 2020,

Rank in 2020 University
29 Australian National University (ANU)
38 The University of Melbourne
42 The University of Sydney
43 The University of New South Wales (UNSW)
47 The University of Queensland (UQ)
58 Monash University
86 The University of Western Australia (UWA)
106 The University of Adelaide
140 University of Technology Sydney (UTS)
207 University of Newcastle
212 University of Wollongong
224 Queensland University of Technology (QUT)
230 Curtin University
237 Macquarie University
238 RMIT University
271 Deakin University
274 University of South Australia (UniSA)
291 University of Tasmania
377 James Cook University (JCU)
383 Swinburne University of Technology
400 La Trobe University
424 Flinders University
442 Bond University
484 University of Canberra

Documentary Proof Required for an Australia Study Visa

You will generally need the following basic documents while applying for an Australia Student Visa.

  •  The Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment as proof of admission into a college or university.
  •  A valid passport.
  •  Your visa application fee.
  •  Your GTE (Genuine Temporary Entrant) statement.
  •  Academic and work experience documents.
  •  Evidence of financial ability to meet expenses like tuition fees, living expenses, living costs for dependents, and return airfare.
  •  Details of OSHC health insurance policy.
  •  Statement of purpose.
  •  Passport-size photographs.

You will also be required to provide additional documents like parental consent if you are under 18 years of age.

Application Process: Study in Australia in 3 Simple Steps!

You have to make sure that you meet all the requirements before you fill up the visa application.

To fulfil the requirements, you would need to :

  •  Meet Australian study requirements: You have to be enrolled in a full-time course ( undergraduate, masters or Phd) to be able to apply for a student visa. The course must be registered with the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses. for Overseas Students (CRICOS). The university will provide an electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCoE) certificate which will serve as proof of enrolment.
  •  Meet Language Requirements: Authorities need to know that you have adequate language abilities. You can display this by taking a language proficiency test. The following tests scores are acceptable:
    •  International English Language testing system (IELTS) : 5.5-6
    •  Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) : 46
    •  Pearson Test of English (PTE) : 42
    •  Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) : 162
    •  Occupational English Test (OET) : A ‘b’ for each test component
  •  Have a Genuine Temporary Entrant (gte) statement: This will state that your only intention is to study in Australia, and that you plan on returning.
  •  Have adequate health insurance: In the event of something happening to your health in Australia, the authorities need to know that you will be able to pay your own healthcare bills. You usually have to purchase an Overseas Student Health Cover to prove this.
  •  Meet health requirements: You must be in reasonably good health, and have no major illnesses that show up during medical tests.
  •  Meet character requirements: You are only eligible to apply for a study visa if you do not have a criminal or terrorist background. You must have a clean record.
  • You will need to get your certificate of Enrolment for this step. You may be asked to pay a portion of your tuition fees to get this certificate.
  • You may also be asked to purchase an Overseas Student Health Cover so that authorities can be sure your health and its expenses will be taken care of.
  • Create a profile: On the Australian Immigration Website. You will need to have scanned copies of your documents on hand.
  • Fill in your visa application: The application can be filled up to 124 days before the commencement of your course and not before that.
  • After you have successfully filled in your application and uploaded the documents, you have to pay the visa fees.
  • Following this, you will receive a Transaction Reference Number which you can use to check to see where your application stands.

Australian Student Visa Processing Time 2022

Usually the student visa Australia is processed within a month, however, the maximum time it could take is 3 months.

However, Simplified Student Visa Framework (SSVF) streamlines the visa processing time. Processing Time for Student Visa is:
Stream 75% Processing 90% Processing
Foreign Affairs or Defense Sector 20 days 26 days
Postgraduate Research Sector 39 days 77 days
Independent ELICOS Sector 23 days 38 days
Vocational Education and Training Sector 36 days 52 days
Higher Education Sector 17 days 32 days

Since the SSVF process has streamlined, the standard time taken is anywhere between 4 – 6 weeks. This also depends upon the education institution and outstanding documents can always be requested if required and desired by the visa officer.

The higher education provider in Australia will issue the Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCOE) that is essential in the Student Visa Program (SVP) procedure. The application is then sent to the Department of Home Affairs.

It is recommended that you apply for the student visa at least 12 weeks before the day of orientation at the educational institution.

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Other Important FAQs

Most individual universities in Australia have their own set of criteria for admissions. While gap year acceptability varies from one university to another, small gaps of one or two years are normal. You will however need to justify large gaps of three to four years though.

Other factors for gap acceptability depend upon whether you want to join an undergraduate course or a postgraduate course. Justification is necessary though, irrespective of the course you intend to join. You may also have to provide evidence as a reason in some cases.

After completing your higher education in Australia, you can also apply for the Temporary Graduate Visa Subclass 485 to obtain a permanent residency. This visa makes international students eligible to live and temporarily work in the country after completing two years of studies in Australia.

There is no maximum age limit to fulfill your dreams of studying at an Australian university. The student visa to Australia has no age limit. Living in Australia is an incredible experience.

You can improve your training and develop skills, both professionally and personally. Age is not an excuse to not leave your comfort zone. Do not miss an opportunity like this.

Yes. While most universities in Australia require Indian students to appear for an English language proficiency test, many have waived the IELTS test. However, this tends to vary and you are required to check the same with the admission faculty of the university concerned. Quite often, the IELTS English proficiency test is waived for students who have earlier completed their education in the English language.

Your spouse and other family members can accompany you while you participate in your desired study in an Australian education program. You can apply for this inside or outside of Australia through the online portal.

Conduct these basic checks before you apply
  • Ensure that you are enrolled in the desired study in Australia program.
  • You should either fall in an exemption category or hold the OSHC (Overseas Student Health Cover).
  • The applicant should be equal to or more than 6 years.
  • In case you are less than 18 years of age, you are required to prove that you have a welfare arrangement.

Provided that you meet immigration requirements, a student visa to Australia allows undergraduate and postgraduate full time university degree students to work part-time during the academic year and full time over summer vacations.

However, the right to work on your student visa cannot be enforced till you have formally enrolled in your study program at the university.

Individual universities in Australia also provide a Student Job Search service. This is to help you find part-time work during the term and full time work during the summer holidays. Make sure you join and access this as soon as possible as new offers from employers come in all the time.

Australian Student Visa allows full time university degree students to work up to 40 hours per fortnight during academic terms and unlimited hours during summer vacations.

If your current visa conditionally is not subject to a No Further Stay, you can always apply for a further student visa in Australia.

The following process is applicable for undergraduate or postgraduate program students.

Step 1 – Use the same online request form for obtaining a new Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment or eCOE.

Step 2 – The OHSC is not automatically extended with eCOE. You will have to separately organize an extension until the expiry date of your new student visa. Contact the agent privately to extend your policy.

Step 3 – Prepare the supporting documents to attach to your application. This includes –

  • Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCOE).
  • OSHC Policy.
  • Your Passport.
  • Statement to satisfy the Genuine Temporary Entrant status.
  • Evidence of Financial Capacity.

Step 4 – You can apply online for a Student Visa Subclass 500 to the Department of Home Affairs. You can do this yourself or use the services of a registered migration consultant.

The Department of Home Affairs will send you an acknowledgement along with a copy of your Bridging Visa for applicants in Australia.

Normally, your Australian Student Visa to a university will last for the duration of the study programme (including holidays) you are enrolled in and will also allow you to remain in Australia for some time after finishing the course.

It depends upon the length of the course and the month in which it ends. If your course is longer than ten months and ends in November or December, your student visa can end on March 15 of the next year.

Several educational institutions in Western Australia and South Australia offer a wide range of scholarships to meritorious Indian students to help them fund their studies.

The Australian government, public, and private establishments also provide grants and bursaries apart from scholarships. However, check the eligibility criteria along with the closing application date.