Student visas made easier in Australia

Friday, September 23, 2011
The Australian Government calls the changes to Australian higher education for foreign students a "boost," after the Government approved recommendations to the Australia Student Visa program, 22 September.

Access to Australian higher education for foreign students has been streamlined and made easier, and all students who graduate with an Australian degree will get a Right to Work Visa for two years after graduation.

The measurements were in response to the Strategic Review of the Student Visa Program 2011, released 7 March 2011 by former NSW minister Michael Knight. The recommendations were approved jointly and in full by the Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Jobs and Workplace Relations, Sen. Chris Evans, and by the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen MP. The study had been commissioned in December 2010.

The application approval process will be streamlined for most applicants.

Upon completion of studies with an Australian university degree, students will be able to get the right to work in Australia for 2 years no matter the degree.

Students still need sufficient funds to support themselves – $18,000 per annum for living expenses, plus the cost of tuition – but the required amount of money a student needs to show and have in the bank will be up to $36,000 less than it was, according to the government.

According to the Government, all parts of the program will be implemented through 2012-13, and the main recommendations will be in effect before second semester 2012.

The Australian Government has an online guide for students to learn more about studying in Australia, and students can apply here.

According to the Australia Government, the number of students visas has “undergone rapid growth” in the last 12 years, increasing by about 150 percent from 108,000 visas in 1997-98 to 270,000 in 2009-10.

Here's information about getting student visas in some other APEC countries: