Student Visas

The student visa program contains one visa class, Class TU (Student). This class is comprised of a number of different subclasses, each relating to a different education sector or level of study. In addition, there is an associated visa subclass (580 – Student Guardian) for family members who wish to travel to and remain in Australia in order to act as guardians for student visa holders under 18 (and in some exceptional cases, for student visa holders who are over 18).

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has made changes to the student visa framework for studying in Australia. The new simplified student visa framework will kick in from 1 July 2016 and this new simplified student visa framework will affect new international students and family members of international students.

Under the new framework, there will be only one student visa available to study in Australia. International students will apply for a single student visa- subclass 500, regardless of their chosen course of study. All students and their family members will generally be required to lodge their visa application online by creating an account in ImmiAccount. Existing international students with visa subclass numbers 570 to 576, will not be affected due to this change. After 1 July 2016, family members of existing international student will have to apply for a visa under subclass 590 if they wish to join them in Australia.

Most students must make their first application for a student visa outside Australia, although certain applicants may make their first student visa application onshore. Subsequent student visa applications are generally made onshore by all applicants.
Second Working Holiday Visa 417

Student Visa SC 500

The criteria for grant of a student visa depend on what level of education an applicant wishes to undertake, and on whether or not a student visa applicant is assessed as a risk of not complying with his or her student visa conditions while in Australia and/or not being a genuine student. Most student visa applicants are assigned an “assessment level”, based on their nationality, the type of course they propose to undertake, and the perceived risk of visa breach.1 The assessment levels are set out in a Gazette Notice, or instrument in writing, and change from time to time.

Student Visa Class and Subclasses There is one student visa class (Student Visa (Temporary) (Class TU)) and seven student subclasses (570 to 576), each representing one ‘education sector’ as well as a Student Guardian visa subclass (580).
Migration Regulations contains the following subclasses of the Class TU student visa:
  • 570 - Independent ELICOS (English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students) Sector
  • 571 - Schools Sector
  • 572 - Vocational Education and Training Sector
  • 573 - Higher Education Sector
  • 574 – Postgraduate Research Sector
  • 575 - Non-Award Sector
  • 576 - AusAID or Defence Sector
  • 580 - Student Guardian
Last edited by Pamela.

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