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Student Visa - Subclass 500

When applying for a student visa to study in Australia, there are several visa requirements you have to meet. This is your guide to Australian student visas.

What student visas are available to international students?

All international students coming to Australia need to apply for a Student Visa (subclass 500). This applies no matter the type of study you’re hoping to undertake, whether it be Higher Education (like a degree program at an Australian university), postgraduate (such as a Masters or PhD program), ELICOS (for studying English in Australia)  or a Vocational Education and Training course (perfect for shorter study and job-ready skills).

What do I need to know about a Student visa?

A Student visa (subclass 500) will allow you to study in Australia for the length of your course (up to five years and in line with your enrolment).

After your five years are up, you’ll need to apply for a new visa if you intend to stay in Australia, or liaise with the government to gain an extension on your current student visa if you want to continue studying.


To get started, your visa application will be processed by creating an account online through ImmiAccount.

When it comes to applying for your visa, start as early as possible, to give yourself time to collect all the required documents. You should start looking at potential courses you’d like to study about four to five months in advance.


The fee for the subclass 500 visa can start from AU$630. There may also be some additional costs involved in the application process, such as police and health checks, and it is important to note that this price does not include tuition fees or living expenses.

The cost of your compulsory Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) will depend on the level of cover you choose (for example, OSHC ‘Extras’, including coverage for dental and optical, will cost more). You should allocate a minimum of AU$450 (single person for one year) for OSHC.

Make sure to account for these costs when budgeting.

Language requirements

Depending on the course you want to study in Australia, you may need to show evidence of your English language skills. Individual educational institutions often have a different level of English proficiency required for your student visa application, so make sure to check beforehand.

While practising your English skills using online resources is a good option, you can also find a teacher or an Australian-based centre that offers online learning.

You may need to provide test scores from an English language test or alternatively provide evidence of completed eligible English studies from the last two years. Some international students may fall into an exemption category.

Click here to see the minimum scores required to meet the English language specifications for the subclass 500 visa.

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