Planning to Study in Australia? Know the Major Changes in Student Visa Requirements!

All the aspiring international students out there!

Are you going to apply for the Australian Student Visa?

Then make sure you sit up and take notice to the new changes made in the student visa framework of Australia.            

It is evident to all that under the simplified student visa framework that came into effect from July 2016, all the countries and the CRICOS (Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Educations) registered education providers are allocated an immigration risk rating between one and three.

Once in every six months, the immigration risk rating of education provider is used to update the combined immigration risk rating of education provider and the country.

This rating is then used to streamline financial and the English evidentiary requirements for student visa applicants with an aim to bring more genuine students into the system and ensure fair recruitment practices.

The education provider’s immigration risk rating for the 12-month period (ending 31 December) is determined in the following March while for the 12-month period (ending 30 June) is determined in the following September.

On Friday, 31st March 2017, the Department of Home Affairs has updated the immigration risk rating for countries and education providers.

The changes in the risk ratings means the evidence required for the English language and financial capability may also change.

Hence, all the students submitting visa application on or after 31st of March need to use the online Document Checklist Tool carefully to get a clear indication of the evidence required for the financial and English evidentiary requirement.

To those, who are not aware of the Immigration Risk Rating, here is the brief overview:

Using a weighted average, Immigration risk ratings are calculated on the basis of total number of international students (including applicants and student visa holder both) with confirmation of enrolment (CoE) for the principal course of study from the education provider.

Here’s how it is calculated:

Immigration Risk Rating Indicators

Percentage Weightings Immigration Risk Rating Indicators

25 % Weighting

Number of Visa Cancellations

40% Weighting

Number of refusals due to a fraud reason on offshore applications.

10% Weighting

Number of refusals (excluding fraud) on offshore applications.

15% Weighting

Number of student visa holders becoming unlawful non-citizens.

10% Weighting

Number of Subsequent Protection Visa applications.

Education providers, who have acquired the lowest immigration risk rating, can have the benefits of streamlined evidentiary requirements for all countries. While the ones with highest immigration risk can only get such benefits for students form the lowest immigration risk countries.

In case of education providers with streamlined evidentiary requirements, the student visa applicants are not required to provide evidence for their financial capacity but can satisfy the Department of Home Affairs by declaration. However, the Department has all the rights to ask for more evidence, depending upon the requirements of case.

In regular evidentiary requirements, the student visa applicants are generally required to provide documentary evidence of their financial and English language capacity.

Current Immigration Risk Rating of few countries (Effective from 31st March 2017 till Sep 2017):

Countries Immigration Risk Ratings

India, Pakistan, Vietnam, Philippines


Mauritius, Sri Lanka






Malaysia, China, Colombia


For more information about the changes in the immigration risk ratings or the evidentiary requirements for the student visa, feel free to get in touch with us today!

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