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Student Visa
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Every student seeking for high quality of education and training system in Australia for more than 3 months has to apply for the student visa. The study courses which are under 3 months of period will be considered for the visitor visa or working holiday visa. Visas will be issued by the Australian DIAC (Department of Immigration and Citizenship). It will be issued only if your study program is a fulltime registered course (which is offered by Australian government for international students) or a part of a registered course. Know more about Registered Courses .

Issuance of Australian student visa has become easy today, with the adaptation of e-visa system through the approved education agents. There are thirteen education agents in India that processes student visas electronically and provides a student’s supporting documents as electronic attachments.

The number of student visas being granted for the Indian students is steadily increasing. In the year of 1994-95, Australia has issued 270 student visas for Indian students, which in 2007 has grown to 97,035 and is also forecasted to reach 1,00,000 student visas every year, by 2025.

Student Visa Procedure
The process of Australian student visa begins with the application for admission in university. Then an offer letter would be sent, based on which you need to complete the Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCoE) process. It is always a good idea to wait till you get the guidance from the university to obtain a eCoE. They provide information regarding how to apply and what documents are required to enclose with the application. To complete the process, you have to make payment of tuition and other fees (Overseas Student Health Cover and application fee, if any)

New procedure for Student Visa
Under the new procedure for Australian student visa, you have to lodge your application electronically through approved Education agents. Read all the information from the form-1025i (Making Processing Visa Applications). Every applicant has to fulfill the criteria of issuing student visa such as, financial ability, proficiency of English language intention to comply visa conditions. Each application will be assessed against one of the 5 Assessment Levels for each visa sub-class.

English Language Requirements
Students from non-English speaking countries have to take an IELTS/TOEFL test to prove their English language abilities. Students visas issued from 26 April 2008 are also allowed to work without any separate permission. This is applicable for both the students and their family members traveling along with them. This new arrangement will save the student visa holders time and money.

eCoE - Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment
An eCoE is the certificate issued by the DIAC for the students to confirm the acceptance of their admission in the university. This certificate is required for the processing of the visas application or for the extension. Before the issuance of eCoE students have to undergo a Pre-Visa Assessment (PVA) based on the nationality and principal course of study. To get eligible for student visa, students have to enroll in an Australian university/institution and receive an eCoE. The eCoE form includes the crucial information such as the course starting date, ending date and other codes used by the DIAC that students have to be aware of. Typically eCoE will be issued after the university receives the student’s tuition fee. A copy of your eCoE must be submitted to your local DIAC office before a student visa can be issued.

Conditions for Student Visa
Students going to Australia for education will be encircled by the laws of Commonwealth of Australia. Students have to strictly adhere to the set of rules determined by the host university. Australian government has provided a range of essential conditions that has to be abided by every student applying for Australian student visa. The following are some of them:

  • Students have to pursue a consistent study program that is recognized by the Australian government.
  • Students have to fulfill all the requirements of the study program.
  • Students have to maintain a valid enrolment - attendance requirements may apply
  • Students holding student visa can work without getting any additional permission.
  • Students are not allowed to work for more than 20 hours a week during their semester, except any specific permission.
  • Every student has to sustain their OSHC (Overseas Student Health Cover) all the time in Australia.
  • Students under the age of 18 years have to arrange for their accommodation, support and general welfare provisions certified by the Australian government – DIAC. In case of changing the residence or other arrangements they have to get the written approval from the government.
  • Students are not allowed to stay in Australia beyond the visa expiry date, unless it is an extremely critical situation.

How To Apply For The Australian Student Visa
After receiving the eCoE from the educational provider, you can apply for the student visa. To prioritize your application, DIAC encourages students to lodge their visa application as soon as they receive eCOE. Students have to make sure that they have met the English language requirements before lodging the visa application. Student visa application will be lodged in 3 different ways:

1) E-Lodgment through Online: Visit the official Australian visa website http://www.immi.gov.au/e_visa/students.htm accordingly. The visa fee can be paid either by credit card or by Bpay method (It takes 7 days to process the payment). Through Online application you can automatically get the bridging visa, which enable you to stay in Australia and study while your application is being processed.

Within 7 working days after lodging your application online, you will be receiving a decision of approving your application. If there is any incomplete documentation, you will be first receiving an e-mail or a letter advising to forward the further documentation you may be required to lodge the application.

2) Lodging Application at Office
Students have to fill up the Form-157A, get ready with all the required documents and visit the nearer VFS office. You can download the Form-157A from the website: www.immi.gov.au/allforms/pdf/157a.pdf. Fill the application form and submit it to the officer enclosing all the required documents including the eCoE, academic results, Medical Test results and other items listed in the checklist.

3) Applying By Mail
Students can also apply for the Australian visa even through the mail. This is preeminent for the people who cannot make their application through online or visit directly to the office. This is method application will be employed in a very rare situation. Students have to send their application along with the completed Form-157A including the fee amount and eCoE to the following Address,

DIAC Client Services
GPO BOX 241
Melbourne, 3001

Note: Impel uses the E-Visa system only for its students.

If required you will be contacted to attend an appointment. A letter will be sent to you advising of outstanding documents required within 7 working days. In most cases lodged and Mailed applications will NOT require you to come into our office.

Sub-Classes of Student Visa
Australian student visas are broadly classified into the following seven sub-classes based on the education sector chosen by the student.

Subclass 570 Independent ELICOS
Subclass 571 Schools
Subclass 572 Vocational education and Training (VET) sector
Subclass 573 Higher Education
Subclass 574 Postgraduate Research
Subclass 575 Non-award
Subclass 576 AusAID or Defence sponsored
Source: www.studyinaustralia.gov.au

All the above visa sub-classes are placed under Assessment Level 4 for India, with effect from 1st Sept. 2008.
One peculiar condition while applying for a student visa is that the applicant’s family members must be included on student’s initial student visa application, even if they do not accompany the student to Australia or intend to visit him/her in Australia. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) classifies the student family as the spouse (a person you are legally married to or a person of the opposite sex who you have been living with in an exclusive relationship for more than 12 months) and the student’s children aged under 18 and never married.

There are a number of conditions on the student visa the student must follow to be allowed to study in Australia. The main conditions are that the student must:

  • maintain satisfactory attendance;
  • achieve satisfactory academic results;
  • continue to be enrolled in a registered course;
  • notify the student education provider of the his/her address within seven days of arriving in Australia, and within seven days of any change in the student address;
  • notify the university if the student changes to a new university within seven days of obtaining your new certificate of enrolment; and
  • maintain OSHC cover

Checklist of Required Documents
Students applying for Australian student visa have to carry the following list of documents to file for the processing:

Visa Application Charge 540 AUD payable through Credit Card
Additional Information Form 1221
Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCoE) issued by your education provider for the course(s) you are undertaking stating the course, total tuition fees, duration and the course start date along with OSHC
Letter of Offer issued by your education provider for the course(s) you are undertaking stating the course, total tuition fees, duration and the course start date.
Original Passport (min 6 months validity)
Copy of the passport (Notarized)
Four recent passport sized photographs (Light colored back ground)
Statement of purpose (Original - Signed by the student)
Academic Certificates (ORIGINALS)
Copies Academic Certificates (Notarized)
Work Experience Certificate (on the original letter heads)
Copies of the Work Experience Certificates (Notarized)
IELTS Score Card (ORIGINAL)
Copy of the IELTS Score Card (Notarized)
Evidence of Liquid Funds
Evidence of Income
Affidavit of Support by the Sponsors
Student Affidavit, if the student is self sponsoring for his studies in Australia
Evidence of Relationship
Documents of dependents included in the application- Birth Certificate, Marriage certificate and evidence of marriage (Photos etc.)
If any of your dependents are 5-17 years of age (inclusive in the application), documentation confirming their enrolment in an Australian school and Under 18 Consent Form
If the applicant is under 18 years of age you will have to show evidence that appropriate arrangements have been done for your welfare before you lodge your application.
Visa documentation – requirements
When lodging your application please place documents in the following order (from top down):
A. Financial documents (at top) – including financial matrix* evidence of funds and evidence of source of income
  • Official declaration from the applicant’s parents / sponsor stating the nature of their relationship to them. They should confirm they will support the applicant financially during their studies in Australia. The applicant must also include full contact details of their parents / sponsor (including residential address and postal address, if different, and telephone numbers)
  • Evidence of sponsor’s occupation and annual income – letter from the sponsor’s employer confirming employment, and including full contact details (address and telephone numbers), and sponsor’s personal bank statements and tax returns for the last 3 years;
  • Loan disbursement letter;
  • Chartered Accountant Statements of the financial sponsor and parent;
  • In the case of company sponsorship, balance sheet and bond signed with the company;
  • Evidence of income sourced from agriculture such as evidence of ownership and valuation of land, income statement from the regional authority (eg Patwari or Mandel office) and receipt of sales, and J forms;
  • Evidence of rental income such as evidence of ownership of property and lease deeds;
  • Evidence of retirement income such as letter from the company at the time of retirement stating amount of pension, and recent bank statement showing credit of pension to account.
As you must have noticed, the visa process and documentation is quite cumbersome. At Impel, we make things easy for you with our professional guidance and services. Please contact any of our offices for further assistance with your visa process.
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