Step 1: Get evidence of English language proficiency

Most international students need to meet English language requirements to gain entry into their course and receive a student visa. If you need help determining the scores you need, or if you’re simply looking for more information, check our answers to a few common questions

Australia accepts IELTS for migration purposes and for all visa applications that require evidence of English language proficiency.

Step 2: Apply to an education provider in Australia and get a CoE

Before you can apply for a Student Visa (subclass 500) to Australia, you should be accepted into an Australian study program. There is free help available for you. If you have an offer letter from a university, you need to accept this and pay the tuition fees. The education provider sends you an electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE). You need this for your visa application. 

Remember, you don’t have to do this alone. There are experts who can help you apply for any Australian university course free of chargeexternal icon.

Step 3: Create an account with the Australian immigration authorities

You can usually apply for an Australian visa online. This also lets you track your progress. Before you start your visa application, you have to create an account on the Department of Home Affairs website hereexternal icon

  • Proof of temporary stay: on your application you may show that you only plan to stay in Australia temporarily. For example, you can support this claim by attaching proof of employment or a letter from your school in your home country or similar documents. 

Sometimes you will need to provide additional documents. You can use the toolexternal icon on the Department of Home Affairs website.

Step 4: Complete the visa application online

If you are an international student coming to Australia, you should apply for a Subclass 500 visaexternal icon. It’s probably a good idea to  apply for your visa at least 6 weeks before your course starts. 

“I took IELTS as I’m going to study in Australia. IELTS is one of the biggest English tests in the world, which means lots of countries and institutions recognize it.”

- Jackie from China got her IELTS score for a Student Visa.

Step 5: Pay the visa fee and get a TRN-number

You need to pay a fee to get an Australian visa. This may not be refunded when you visa is rejected, so it’s a good idea to get adviceexternal icon before you submit your visa application. When you have completed the application, you pay the application fee. The fee is currently about $575. After you submit your application, you get a Transaction Reference Number (TRN). Save this so you can track your application online.

Step 6: Possible health checkup and interview

Sometimes you have to complete a health check and/or an interview. You get information about this when you complete the visa application.

Step 7: Your visa decision

How long does it take to get your Student Visa (subclass 500) decision? You usually get an outcome within a couple of weeks if your application is complete. However, the quality of your application can affect this. Also, it can depend on how busy the Australian immigration authorities are. A mistake on your application can cause a delay or result in rejection. 

When your Student Visa application has been processed, you will get an email notification. Your visa is electronic, so it might be a good idea to print the Visa Grant letter and keep this with your passport when you travel to Australia.

Step 8: Travel to Australia

When you have your visa, you can book your travel and enter Australia. Welcome! When you’re here, check fun things to do in Adelaide or read why Melbourne is the most liveable city. If you want to avoid awkward mistakes: get to know Australian place names that are commonly mispronounced

IELTS for Study

Want to study in Australia? With IELTS, you know that your score can help you with a Student Visa. We’re here to help you get the score you need. 

Immigration and the law 

Legislation about immigration changes frequently. It’s important to check the Australian Department of Home Affairsexternal icon website for changes that may apply to you. If you are interested in Australian student visas, work visas, or looking to migrate permanently, you need to lodge an application with the Australian Government. You may want to consider getting support from a lawyer or migration agent. However, you can also get free adviceexternal icon for student visas.