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10 tips for a great student visa application

Home to some of the world’s best universities with a fantastic climate to match, it is no wonder that Australia has become much sought after by students from around the world as a study destination of choice. If you are thinking about heading overseas to Australia for your University placement, you’re certainly not alone. And although the visa application process has recently become much more simplified and easier to navigate, there are a few ways to make sure your visa application runs as smoothly as possible. Give yourself a head start with this simple checklist.

1. Make sure you can meet the initial requirements.

It sounds obvious, but there a few basic boxes that need ticking up front such as English language competency, financial stability and academic achievement. Officials will also want reassurance that you are a genuine temporary entrant (GTE) and intend to return home when your study is complete. Check here for your eligibility.

2. Is your institution CRICOS registered?

The institution you have selected for study has to be legally registered as an education provider for overseas students. This listing provision is known as the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS). If your institution does not feature on the list, your visa application will be invalid.

3. Are you using the correct application procedure?

Ensure that your application fits the process required by your individual institution. Some require entry specifically via an agent, whereas others are happy with direct applications. If there is any doubt, contact them directly for guidance.

4. Check that your chosen course fits the visa requirements

Overseas student visas require that courses run for a minimum of 3 months and fall into a specific level of education. Evidence must be provided that the course is considered full time.

5. Have you received your CoE?

Before applying for your visa, ensure that you have completed your course enrolment and have received a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE). You will need this reference for your visa application as proof of acceptance onto your course.

6. Get a health check

Your visa requires that you meet specific health requirements. This may mean that a health check is required, particularly if you are coming from a country where there are public health concerns. If you think this could apply to you, you can save time by having this done in advance. You will also be required to obtain health insurance for the duration of your studies. This is available from a list of approved Australian providers.

7. Be prepared

Have everything ready and on hand before you apply so you can log in to your immi account and fulfil the application in one sitting. Store digital copies as well as photocopies of all your documentation so that you always have access to what you might need. Check and recheck for little errors – it’s just not worth having anything hold up the process. Check here to make sure you have all your documentation.

8. Prepare prepare prepare

Just like when you apply for a job, the interview part is that crucial stage which everything finally rests upon. Reassure yourself by knowing your application thoroughly and be prepared to answer questions. They could range from why you want to study in Australia, about the particular course you have selected, how you will manage financially and what you plan to do afterwards. Have a few practise runs at it with friends or family so that on the day you are confident and relaxed.

9. Is there sufficient room in your passport?

Although the visa itself will only take up one page, you will need at least 4-6 blank pages otherwise you may be required to renew the passport before the visa can be approved. This will further delay the process as well as adding to the expense.

10. Allow as much time as possible

Visa administrative procedures are unpredictable at best, and if the visa is not approved on time you will not be able to start your course. It is a much less stressful process if you can allow as much time as possible to account for any delays and amendments – rather than feel under time pressure as the Semester approaches.

And now relax! You have done everything you can in the application process. As you wait for the outcome, it’s a good time to start thinking about where you will live. Check out our advice on what to look for in student accommodation, or learn more about our Iglu locations in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney.

Photo by Adolfo Félix on Unsplash

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