What are ‘Assessment Levels’?
The Assessment Levels generally determine how likely you are to meet the conditions of an Australia Student Visa
. The passport you hold and the education sector of your principal course will determine the appropriate ‘Assessment Level’ which your student visa application will be processed at. Level 1 is the lowest assessment level and 5 is the highest. The higher the level, the more evidence you will need to provide on things such as your English language skills and your financial situation.
Can I lodge my initial student visa application while I’m in Australia?
If you are Assessment Level 2 to 5 your initial visa application can only be submitted outside of Australia, unless you can show exceptional reasons for you to be granted a student visa whilst in Australia.
I am resident outside my country of citizenship. Where do I apply from?
You must apply for your Australian Student Visa at the office responsible for processing student visas in your country of residence.
When do I have to sit the English proficiency test?
You must take the test before
you apply for your student visa or the test will not be considered for this application. If you are required to sit an approved test to show your English language skills, the test is only acceptable if taken no more than 2 years before making your Oz student visa application.
Can I pass TOEFL instead of IELTS?
A TOEFL English language test will only be accepted if you are citizen of one of the following countries: Belarus, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Kyrgyzstan, Mali, Moldova, Solomon Islands, Suriname, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Uganda, and Uzbekistan.
I can’t get an appointment to sit an English language test, but my education provider is satisfied with my level of English. Can I get a visa?
No. Where an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test is required (for Assessment Level 3-5 applicants), then you must sit the test before you make your student visa application for Australia. This is a legislative requirement that cannot be waived.
What evidence of funds do I need to provide?
To get a visa to study in Australia you must show the Australian Immigration authorities that you have enough money to pay for your travel, education and living costs for you and your family unit members
while you are in Australia.
You must show enough funds to cover your annual course fees, travel costs to and from Australia per person (one return trip only), and living expenses as follows:
Your spouse: AU$4200
First child: AU$2400
Each extra child: AU$1800
School costs each year for every child aged between 5 and 18 years: AU$8000
Does the money have to be my own?
The money source to support you and your family in Australia depends on the Assessment Level
your application will be processed at.
Do I need Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)?
You must have acceptable health insurance cover by paying the OSHC for yourself and any accompanying family unit members. Norwegian students with Norwegian National Insurance cover and Swedish students with international cover arranged through the National Board of Student Aid are covered and do not need to take up OSHC.
You have to either ask your education provider in Australia to organise your health insurance cover on your behalf or select an approved OSHC provider yourself. You must provide the office processing your Australia student visa
with a receipt of payment of the OSHC fee or other evidence that you are covered by OSHC before your student visa is granted.
Do I need to send original documents with my application?
No, you do not need to provide original documents with your Oz student visa application. If the Australian Immigration authorities require original documents at any later stage they will ask for it. You should provide certified copies of original documents.
What is a “certified copy”?
A certified copy is a copy which is authorised as a true copy by a person before whom a Statutory Declaration can be made e.g. magistrates, Justice of the Peace, Commissioner of Declarations, Commissioner for Affidavits, solicitors, registered medical practitioners, bank managers etc.
Do my documents need to be translated into English?
Yes. Documents in languages other than English must be accompanied by an English translation. If you are applying in Australia, the translator must be accredited by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI). If you are overseas, you should ask at your nearest Australian embassy or consulate for further information about how to get your documents translated.
Can I travel overseas while I’m in Australia on a student visa?
Yes. The Australian Student Visa is a multiple-entry visa which means you can leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you like during its validity.
Initially, your student visa will not allow you to work in Australia. However, after you have arrived in Australia and are able to show that you have commenced your course of study, you can apply for permission to work.
Once you have started your course and after you have been granted permission to work, you will be entitled to work for 20 hours per week during term time. You may only work full-time when your course is not in session, e.g. between semester one and semester two and between the end of the current academic year and the beginning of the next academic year.
Can my family join me in Australia?
If your application is processed at Assessment Level 1 or 2 the members of your family unit can apply for a student visa (all subclasses) to live with you in Australia. They can apply at the same time as you, or after you have arrived in Australia.
What if my application is processed at Assessment Level 3 to 5?
If your student visa is processed at Assessment Levels 3-5 your family members can be granted student visas only if your proposed course of study is longer than 12 months.
Who qualifies as a family unit member?
A member of the family unit is your spouse or any unmarried dependant children of you or your spouse, who are under 18 years old. All members of your family unit must be declared on your student visa application whether or not they intend to travel to Australia at any time. A member who is not declared will not be eligible for entry to Australia as your family unit member, except for a person who becomes a member after your application was decided.
How long can my family stay in Australia?
Periods of stay granted to members of your family unit will generally be the same as your period of stay on your student visa. Your family members should ensure they always hold a valid visa while in Australia.
Will my children go to school in Australia?
Any school-age family member (aged between 5 and 18 years) who will live with you in Australia is expected to attend school in Australia. You are fully responsible for their education costs.
Our partner Traveltowork can open your Australian bank account before you leave home. Traveltowork partners ANZ and will provide you with your account details by email within 4-5 working days of your application. Once you arrive in Oz, you simply present your passport or driver’s licence at any ANZ branch to access your account.
Thousands of customers choose Visa First to organise their Australian visas every year because:
- We make getting the visa you need fast and hassle-free.
- We are the only company with an online visa status engine which allows you to check the status of your visa 24/7. Check your status now.
- We’re visa experts and have organised over 130,000 visas for people like you.
- Our visa guarantee means no visa – no fee!*
- We don’t just do visas, we sort out everything you’ll need overseas – from accommodation, bank accounts, airport pick up, jobs advice and much more.
If I am a student can I apply for a sponsorship visa?
Yes, a student can apply for a sponsorship visa while in Australia unless there is a condition 'No further Stay' bound to your student visa. You will be granted a bridging visa until the sponsorship visa is finalized.
Could my dependant work as well?
Yes, dependents are allowed to work full time if the visa is valid for 12 months or more.
I will be a student in a University (exchange program) can I register for a working holiday visa? or only a student visa?
If you’re eligible for the Australian working holiday and you won’t be studying for more than 4 months, then there is no problem to go on this type of visa. To be eligible you must meet the following conditions:
- be aged between 18 – 30
- have no children
- hold passport from eligible country - check your visa eligibility here
- have never been in Australia on such working holiday visa
How do I make a complaint?
At Visa First we do everything we can to make sure you receive the best possible service. If you feel that we have not achieved this goal we have set up a complaints handling process:
- Where an official complaint is received by Visa First, the company will record the nature of the complaint and issue an acknowledgement email to the client within 5 business days of receiving the complaint. The acknowledgement will provide the client with the contact name who is responsible for dealing with the complaint. The official complaint must be made by email (you may also write, although this will slow down the process), and confirm that the client wishes to enter this process. Please email your complaint to email@example.com
- Visa First will investigate the complaint as swiftly as possible and where applicable, the complainant will receive a regular written update on the progress of the investigation at intervals of not more than 20 business days.
- Visa First will try to resolve the complaint within 40 business days of having received the complaint. If the complaint cannot be resolved within 40 business days, the Firm will write to the complainant notifying them of the anticipated timeframe for the conclusion of the investigation.
- Within 5 business days of the conclusion of the investigation of the complaint, Visa First will issue a resolution letter detailing the outcome of the investigation. This letter will include, if applicable, an explanation of the terms of any offer that the company is prepared to make in settlement of the complaint.