A student visa enables overseas students to come to Australia to undertake full-time study in registered courses.


In order to apply for a Student Visa, you must first be accepted to study full time in a registered course offered at one of Australia schools, technical colleges or universities.

The Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) provides a list of courses available for overseas students.

Applying for a student visa

The types of student visas have been simplified by the department to just one; subclass 500.

Main requirements

  • Acceptance to study full time in a registered course
  • Genuine intention to stay in Australia temporarily
  • Financial capacity to cover living costs in Australia:
    • Tuition fees
    • Travel costs
    • Living costs
  • Financial capacity to be able to support any visiting / accompanying family members
  • Proficiency in English

Student visa conditions

  • Student visa holders must not undertake work until the main student visa holder has started their course in Australia.
  • Student visa holders are limited to 40 hours work per fortnight while their course is in session, but may work unlimited hours during formal holiday periods.
  • Student visa holders who have commenced their study, towards a Master's degree by research or Doctoral degree, have unrestricted permission to work. 
  • Student visa holders who breach these conditions might be subject to visa cancellation.

Family members' visa conditions

Family members of student visa holders must also meet certain conditions:

  • Family members of student visa holders:
    • Have permission to work up to 40 hours per fortnight once the main student visa holder has started the course of study.
    • Can work unlimited hours if the main student visa holder has started a masters or doctoral course. 
    • If aged 18 years or over, might only study for up to three months. If they want to undertake a course of study that exceeds three months, they must apply for a student visa, in their own right. 
  • School-age family members, children aged 5–18 years, who join the student in Australia for more than three months must attend school. The student must meet any associated education or tuition costs for that child.
  • A student's child aged 18 years or over cannot apply for a student visa as a family member. If they want to study in Australia, they must apply for a student visa in their own right.

Can I apply for the student visa before I have been accepted into an Australian university?

You have to have been accepted by an Australian university to study full time before you apply for the student visa. Find out more

Key people for Student Visas

Shashe Selladurai

Senior Migration Agent
Registered Migration Agent Number: 1686095

Shashe is a registered migration agent at Migration Solutions, assisting with all types of visas.

Call Shashe on 8210 9800 or email her

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NamNam Hoang

Practice Manager / Executive Migration Agent
Registered Migration Agent Number: 0641294

Nam is the business operations manager and a senior migration consultant at Migration Solutions, responsible for the day-to-day business operations of work undertaken.

Call Nam on 8210 9800 or email him

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