Student Rights

Know Your Rights as an International Student

Are you considering study options in Australia? There are several reasons why you should do it. Australia has 7 of the top 100 universities worldwide and has the third highest number of overseas students in the world. In addition, Australia’s best cities are based are rated extremely high in quality of life, student mix, and employer activity. These are important elements for students when choosing the best study destination.

There are a lot of factors to consider when deciding to study abroad. Resources, such as IDP Education can provide you support and guidance as you explore educational opportunities in Australia. As the national main student representative body, CISA present you relevant information related to your studies in Australia from a student’s perspective.

Choose where to study

What do you want to study? Think about the university or college you would like to go and the place of Australia that suits your budget and lifestyle. If you are unsure about the city you want to choose, have in mind that the most liveable cities in Australia are Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney and Perth! This is because a number of factors, such as education and infrastructure, healthcare, culture and environment.

Meet an education agent

Education agents can help you decide where to study depending on your goals. They will explain you the Australian education system and the student application process. Also, they will advice you about the courses that fit your needs and how the application process works. It is important that you understand their role, and be aware of the standards they must follow.

Health Insurance for international students

The health system of Australia is in the top rank of the World Health Organization’s best performing group of countries for healthy life expectancy and health expenditure per person. The Australian public health system, Medicare, provides free public hospital care and subsidies for primary care.

As an international student, you need to has an Overseas Students Health Cover (OSHC), which will assist you to meet the cost of hospital and medical care while you are in Australia. You can find more information coming soon to our website.

Know your visa conditions

The student visa (subclass 500) allows you to study full-time in a recognised Australian institution. Before you apply for this visa you must have been accepted at an educational institution in Australia. Your course of study has to be registered on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and courses for Overseas for Overseas Students (CRICOS).

You must abide by your visa conditions or your visa could be cancelled. It’s important that you check the number of hours you can work while you are studying in Australia. You must know that you have the same rights and obligations in the workplace as any other employee. You can find more information about your work rights at Fair Work Ombudsman’s website.

What to do next?

After completing your Australian Tertiary qualification (Certificate, Bachelor, Masters or Ph.D. degree) you may be eligible for the Post-Study Work stream of the Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) visa. International students with a different qualification can apply for a graduate work stream visa if their skills and qualifications are related to an occupation on the Skilled Occupation List (SOL)

Are you aware of your student rights and responsibilities? In Australia there are laws to protect international students’ rights. Australian government provide information for international students wishing to study in Australia. This includes information about visa and immigration process, institution and course options, work rights, scholarships, and more.

Accommodation rights

In Australia there are states laws to protect the rights of tenants and landlords. They cover many areas including: landlord and tenant obligations, landlord right of entry to premises, payment and refund of security bonds, inspection sheets, rent in advance and rental increases, repairs and maintenance, lease agreements and termination of agreements and dispute resolution. Find out more information in our website.

Work rights and responsibilities

As international student you are allowed to work a limited number of hours fortnight. You may get a casual or part time job to help pay your living expenses. It’s important that you learn your basic rights in the workplace. You can find more information about it on CISA website or at the Fair Work site. You may also be interested in learning more about your rights and responsibilities regarding unpaid trials, student placements and internships.

Community Legal Centres

International students’ interests are protected by the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) framework. It also protects Australia’s reputation for delivering quality education services by setting out standards, roles and responsibilities for education institutions. In Australia there are some organisations international students can access to get legal information or services. Some of them are: Overseas Students Ombudsman, and Tuition Protection Service.

How to report? 

Complaints from international students about private education providers in Australia are investigated by the Overseas Students Ombudsman. Therefore, if you have a complaint about the quality of your school, college or university we suggest to report it to them. 

We can also help with the grievance. Please check out the page on how to report to find out what information we require to help you with the case.