After you finish studying in Australia
Breaking news: Australian post-study work visas and student visa work hours.
The Australian Government has announced a significant increase to post-study work rights for international graduates studying eligible degree courses.
The changes, which come into effect from 1 July 2023, will allow international graduates with specific qualifications to work in Australia for an additional two years on their subclass 485 visa (otherwise known as the Post Study Work Visa).
So that is two further years, on top of the time that this visa already allows eligible students. This will take the allowance from:
- Two years to four years for specified Bachelor degrees;
- Three years to five years for specified Master degrees
- Four years to six years for all PhDs.
The list of qualifications eligible for the additional PSWV time can be viewed here
The Australian Government is also set to increase the number of hours a student visa holder can work during their studies from the current cap of 40 hours per fortnight to 48 hours per fortnight.
If you have any questions about the changes and how they might affect you and your plans to study in Australia, please contact us for free expert advice
Your Australian student visa is valid for the duration of your course and allows for you to remain in the country for a period of up to three months once your course has finished. If you want to continue living in Australia after completing your studies, it is your responsibility to ensure that you get an appropriate further visa to allow you to do this.
There are a number of options to consider, though please remember that immigration rules do change and visas that are available at the start of your course may not be available to you when you have graduated. Please check www.homeaffairs.gov.au for the latest information.
Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485)
There are two types of visa that you may be eligible to apply for under visa subclass 485. Both are temporary work visas which allow you to work full time for a defined period of time.
1. Graduate Work stream
This visa allows full work rights for you (and your partner) for 18 months from issue. You will only be able to apply for this visa if you satisfy certain criteria, the main one being that the qualification you hold relates to an occupation on the Skilled Occupation List.
2. Post-Study Work Stream
This visa allows full work rights for you (and your partner) for up to four years, depending on the level of your Australian qualification. You will only be eligible for this visa if you applied for and were granted your first student visa on or after 5 November 2011.
- If you have studied a bachelor degree your PSW visa will be valid for two years
- If you have studied a masters by coursework degree your PSW visa will be valid for two years
- If you have studied a masters by research degree your PSW visa will be valid for three years
- If you have studied a doctoral degree your PSW visa will be valid for four years
If you are planning to apply for this visa please be aware of the time your visa may take to be processed.
Please note that where you study will impact the duration of your Post Study Work Visa.
Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane: No changes to the standard allowances for the post study work visa, as above
Perth, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Canberra, Newcastle/Lake Macquarie, Wollongong/Illawarra, Geelong and Hobart: International students studying at universities in these regional locations will be eligible to access an additional year in Australia on a post study work visa
All other locations: International students studying at universities in these regional locations will be eligible to access 2 additional years in Australia on a post study work visa
If you have any questions about the changes or want to talk to an advisor please contact Study Options.
Working Holiday Visa (subclass 417)
This visa is for applicants from certain countries including the UK between the ages of 18 and 30. It is a temporary visa which allows you to work and holiday in Australia for up to a year. You cannot apply for this visa while onshore in Australia so you will need to leave the country before you lodge your application. For more information on applying for this visa please refer to the Department of Home Affairs.
There may be other temporary or permanent visas that you would be eligible for when you have completed your studies. We would recommend you consult the Australian Department of Home Affairs website or contact a registered migration agent to discuss your options.