Student Visa (Subclass 500)

Visa sub-class 500 lays down provisions for a student visa in Australia. Under this type, an international student desirous to pursue education in Australia can apply for Higher Education, Vocational Education Training (VET) courses, Post-Graduate Research Degrees, English Language Intensive Courses etc, in a recognized institution.  

The maximum period allowed staying as a full time student is 5 years without any travel restrictions within the country and with a work permit of maximum 40 hours a week. However, you can apply for temporary or permanent visa immediately after your course is completed. Also, you can include your family members at the time of such visa lodgment.

Be a certain age (school student)

If you are a school student, you must be at least 6 years old or above to apply for this visa.

You must also be:

  • less than 17 years old when you are at Grade 9
  • less than 18 years old when you are at Grade 10
  • less than 19 years old when you are at Grade 11
  • less than 20 years old when you are at Grade 12

Be enrolled in a course of study and provide evidence

If you want your student visa application to be eligible for further process, you must include evidence of enrolment in study.

Such evidence should include the Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) Code in full time courses registered with Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Student (CRICOS).

Packaged Courses and CoEs

Due to provision that allows applying for two or more successive courses with gaps less than two calendar months in-between one and the other, CoE codes for each need to be included in order to adjust visa period.

Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) is not necessary in the following conditions:

  • enrolled in a full-time course of study or training under a scholarship scheme approved by the Australian Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade: provide a letter of support
  • sponsored by the Australian Department of Defense: provide a letter of support
  • a secondary exchange student: provide an Acceptance Advice of Secondary Exchange Student (AASES) form
  • a postgraduate research student who needs to stay in Australia while your thesis is marked: provide a letter from your education provider

Make welfare arrangements if you are under 18 years

Anyone under 18 years of age applying for student visa must have adequate welfare arrangements in place, for, while you are in Australia.

Please follow the given link for detail information:

English language tests

You may need to have evidence of your English language skill at the time you submit your visa application. To find out the evidence, you need to provide the Document Checklist tool.

Regardless of what Document Checklist Tool instructs, you may be asked to furnish the evidence of your English language skill at any time during processing your visa application. Such evidence should confirm that you have obtained a certain test score or you fall under an exemption category in an English language test that the Department has approved as shown below.

English language tests and minimum test scores

English language tests


Column 1:

Test name

Column 2:

Acronym/ also known as

Column 3:

Minimum test score


International English Language Testing system


(a)      Overall band score 5.5; or

(b)     Overall band score 5 if packaged with at least 10 weeks’ ELICOS; or

(c)      Overall band score of 4.5 if packaged with at least 20 weeks’ ELICOS.


Test of English as a Foreign Language internet-based test


(a)      46; or

(b)     35, if packaged with at least 10 weeks’ ELICOS ; or

(c) 32, if packaged with at least 20 weeks’ ELICOS.


Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) test

Certificate in Advanced English

(a)      162; or

(b)     154, if packaged with at least 10 weeks’ ELICOS; or

(c)      147, if packaged with at least 20 weeks’ ELICOS.


Pearson Test of English Academic


(a)      42; or

(b)     36, if packaged with at least 10 weeks’ ELICOS; or

(c)      30, if packaged with at least 20 weeks’ ELICOS.


Occupational English Test


a score of at least B for each test component of the OET.

However, it is recommended to consult with our experts, regarding the eligible score in English language tests, as the criteria greatly varies between the education institutions, level of the study and the course you choose to pursue. 

Conditions for English Language Evidence Exemptions

You do not need to provide evidence of an English test score with your visa application if one of the following applies {sub-class 500.213.(2)}:

  • You are a citizen and hold a passport from UK, USA, Canada, NZ or Republic of Ireland
  • You are an applicant who is a Foreign Affairs or, Defense sponsored student or a Secondary Exchange student (AASES)
  • You are enrolled in a principal course of study that is a registered school course,  English Language Intensive Course for Overseas Students (ELICOS), a course registered to be delivered in a language other than English, or a registered post-graduate research course
  • You have completed at least 5 years’ study in English in one or more of the following countries: Australia, UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, or the Republic of Ireland
  • In the 2 years before applying for the student visa, you completed, in Australia and in the English language, either the Senior Secondary Certificate of Education or a substantial component of a course leading to a qualification from the Australian Qualifications Framework at the Certificate IV or higher level, while you held a student visa.

Have adequate health insurance

You and your family members must have and maintain adequate health insurance under Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) from an approved Australian health insurance provider, unless an 'Exception' applies. The length of coverage you will require depends upon the visa period.

Also, your cover must start from the day you and your family arrives in Australia, and not the day your course starts.

Insurance for Applicants outside Australia

If you want to travel to Australia prior (usually 1 week to 1 month) to your course begins, the OSHC must be activated since the date of your arrival until you leave.

Non compliance of the above mentioned provision may result to refusal of entry to Australia

Insurance for Applicants inside Australia

Continued OSHC with no gap must be maintained.

OSHC Exception

Hereunder are the conditions when oversees students are exempt from OSHC:

  • a Norwegian student covered by the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme
  • a Swedish student covered by Kammarkollegiet (the Swedish Legal, Financial and Administration Agency)
  • a Belgian student covered under the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement with Australia

How to get Overseas Student Health Cover

  • find an approved provider
  • pay for your policy

Or, we can arrange OSHC for you, and furnish all the required information like name of your health insurance company, policy start and expiry date, and the major terms and conditions, to your education provider as they need to include all such information on your Certificate of Enrolment (CoE) 

If you arrange OSHC coverage by yourself, you will need to include the policy number in the visa application.

Upon failure to include your OSHC policy number in your visa application, such application will not be considered eligible for further process.

Insurance for family members

It is recommended to buy a family OSHC policy if you are living with your dependent/s (spouse or a partner and children below 18 years of age) instead if buying individual policies. Every member of your family must have health insurance.

Any family member who joins after you in Australia must have OSHC for the duration of their stay in Australia.

Secure sufficient money for your stay

You must have sufficient money to cover your living expenses, course fees etc during your stay in Australia. For more detail, follow the link below:

Be a genuine temporary entrant

You must have an intention to repatriate after stipulated education in Australia is completed. However, the Australian law does not disallow you to apply for permanent residence given your skills and education Australia requires.

Meet Character Requirement

Unless you meet the character requirements laid down under Section 501 of Migration Act, 1958, you will not be considered eligible to visit or live in Australia.

Meet Health Requirement

It is compulsory for most of the visa applicants that they meet the minimum health standards as set by the concerned authority in Australia. It is also most likely that the applicants need to undergo health scrutiny before the visa is granted.

Sign the Australian values statement

It is necessary that any applicant of 18 years or older sign and confirm that he/she has read or have been explained the Life in Australia booklet, and will fully comply with the Australian laws.

Have paid back your debt to the Australian Government

If you or any of your family members (including those who have not applied for the visa with you) owe money to the Australian government, you or they must have paid it back or arranged to pay it back. 

Not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused

it is more likely that the visa application be rejected if it has been previously refused or cancelled. Thus, it is recommended to consult with our experts’ team for way forward. 

Best interests of the child

 If it is not in the best interest of an applicant under 18, this visa might not be granted.