New rules for student visa applications now in place

by Ray Clancy on November 14, 2011

in Australia Immigration, Education in Australia

Overseas students will need up to $36,000 less when applying for a visa

Overseas students looking to study in Australia now have new rules when applying for visas with the implementation of the Knight Review into the international education sector.

The main change is to the financial requirement for Australian student visa applications. Overseas students will now need up to $36,000 less when applying for a visa.

‘The change recognises that the financial requirements for student visas were often too onerous, and discouraged applicants from choosing Australia as their preferred study destination,’ said Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen.

‘Applicants for the vocational education and training and private education sectors in particular will benefit from this change,’ he added.

The Australian government has also taken away the requirement to meet a minimum English skills level before applying for a visa.

Among the other changes implemented is the introduction of a new ‘genuine temporary entrant’ requirement for all student visa applicants, which allows the immigration department to ensure students intend to stay in Australia on a temporary basis.

‘We want to avoid the situation where student visa holders are desperate to stay in Australia to work to pay off large study debts amassed at home. While international students may aspire to remain in Australia, if they cannot achieve permanent residency or long term employee sponsorship, they need to return to their home countries,’ explained Bowen.

Foreign students aiming to undertake study in Australia will also now have to show proof of their enrolment before being granted a visa.

They are required to include a confirmation of enrolment (COE), issued by their intended education provider, as part of their student visa application.

‘This will improve processing time as students will no longer need to wait for a Pre-Visa Assessment (PVA) letter to be issued by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) before arranging their COE,’ said a DIAC spokesman.

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