Australia welcomes international students

The Australian Government wants international students to have a rewarding, enjoyable and safe experience when they come to Australia to study. Australia’s education and training system offers high quality services and protection for international students to ensure they make the most of their time here.

Australia offers all levels of education to international students—from school (with some limitations depending on age and support from their family in Australia), through foundation and English language intensive courses, to vocational education and training (VET) and higher education.

The laws that protect international students form the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) framework. They include the Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 and the ESOS National Code.

The ESOS Act ensures that education providers are registered by the Australian Government. Under ESOS, education providers must meet certain obligations as part of their registration on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS). They must act in accordance with principles designed to support the best possible services for our international students. As an international student on a student visa, you must study a course with an education provider that can be found on CRICOS at

The ESOS framework also ensures that students have access to tuition assurance (which acts like consumer protection) and that they can get appropriate refunds.

As well as enhancing Australia’s quality education and training services, ESOS supports Australia’s migration laws as they relate to international students.

You can find out more about Australia’s education system by visiting the Study in Australia website at and Australian Education International’s website at

The ESOS National Code is available at

What you need to know about being an international student in Australia

The ESOS standards cover a range of information you have a right to know about and the services that must be offered to you by Australian education providers.

These include

  • Orientation to help you understand the course and more about the place you are studying, as well as access to support services that can help you study and adjust to life in Australia.
  • The education provider’s contact officer or officers for overseas students.
  • What your provider’s requirements are for satisfactory attendance
  • What your provider’s requirements are for satisfactory progress in the courses you study and what support is available if you are not progressing well
  • If you can apply for course credit and the circumstances in which your enrolment can be deferred, suspended or cancelled
  • A complaints and appeals process.

Your responsibilities as an international student in Australia

As an international student on a student visa, you are responsible for:

  • Complying with your student visa conditions
  • Ensuring you have and continue to maintain your Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for as long as you stay in Australia as a student
  • Telling your provider if you change your address or other contact details
  • Meeting the terms of the written agreement with your education provider
  • Meeting the restriction on transfer between registered providers
  • Maintaining satisfactory course progress
  • Maintaining satisfactory attendance where applicable.