Guide to applying for a Subclass 500 Visa


This Student’s Guide is for international students who want to study at a university or college in Western Australia which, in our humble opinion, is the biggest, best and most beautiful State in the whole of Australia! 😀 

Searching for useful information on student visas can be very time consuming. There’s a lot of information online! 

You are welcome to use this Student’s Guide when undertaking your research.

Four students drinking coffee and chatting in tutorial at University
Optus stadium and bridge view from the sky

A STEP BY STEP GUIDE ... to working it out!

STEP 1 -

Check the basic eligibility requirements for the subclass 500 visa on the Department of Home Affairs website.

STEP 2 -

Check whether your intended course(s) of study is/are CRICOS registered. If a course isn’t CRICOS registered, it can’t be used to apply for a student visa.

STEP 3 -

The Department of Home Affairs provides a document checklist tool to help you work out which documents are required in support of a student visa application. It’s important to check whether you will be able to meet any English language requirements BEFORE you submit your student visa application. If you can’t meet the English language requirements, your visa application is likely to be refused.

STEP 4 -

Check whether you will have enough money to cover your study fees, accommodation costs etc. whilst you are in Australia. The Department of Home Affairs specifies how much money you must have, or have access to in order to cover your cost of living, travel expenses and course fees. Make sure you read the Department’s Step by Step guide and in particular “Evidence you have enough money for your stay” before submitting your visa application. If you don’t have the funds required, or genuine access to the funds required, your student visa application is likely to be refused.

Click – Gather your documents >  Show steps > Evidence you have enough money for your stay. 

STEP 5 -

Student visa applicants are required to satisfy a Department of Home Affairs Decision Maker that they are applying for a student visa in order to gain a quality education in Australia and that they are a “genuine temporary entrant.” One of the most common grounds for a student visa refusal is failing to meet the “genuine temporary entrant (GTE) requirement.” You can read about the GTE requirement on the Department of Home Affairs website.

STEP 6 -

Check whether you (and any accompanying family members) can meet the Department of Home Affairs’ character requirements before you apply for a student visa. If you are already in Australia, it’s well worth checking previous visa applications to ensure that you answered all questions correctly. Providing incorrect information on a previous visa application, whether deliberately or by mistake, can cause problems with a future visa application. 

STEP 7 -

Check whether you (or any accompanying family members) can meet the health requirements before you apply for a student visa.

STEP 8 -

You might not be granted a student visa if you have had a visa cancelled or refused while you were in Australia. Check whether your previous visa cancellation or refusal could affect your eligibility to be granted a student visa.

STEP 9 -

As an international student, you must maintain adequate health insurance for the whole of your stay in Australia. Make sure you understand the health insurance requirements. 

Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) must be arranged with a government approved Australian health insurance provider. Students from Belgium, Norway or Sweden might not have to obtain OSHC. The Department of Home Affairs website provides clear guidance on the OSHC requirements.

STEP 10 -

Once you are 100% satisfied that you can meet all of the student eligibility requirements set by the Australian government and you’ve gathered the required supporting documents, you will probably want to prepare and submit your visa application. The Department of Home Affairs website provides clear guidance on how to apply. student visa applications are lodged online through ImmiAccount.


A surprising number of subclass 500 visa applications are refused. A common ground for refusal is not meeting the “genuine temporary entrant” criteria or not attaching the documents required at the time of visa application. If you are managing the visa application process yourself, consider engaging an experienced registered migration consultant to review your application before you submit. 

If you don’t meet the subclass 500 eligibility criteria and/or don’t provide the correct documents to the Department of Home Affairs your visa application is likely to be refused. A visa refusal can be an expensive and stressful experience. Make sure you get your application right first time!


Disclaimer: This Student’s Guide is provided as general information only and must not be used as migration advice. Each visa applicant’s circumstances are unique. If you need migration advice, consider booking a consultation with an experienced Western Australian registered migration consultant or migration lawyer with an excellent subclass 500 visa success rate. 

Benjamin Franklin once said “Failing to Plan is planning to fail.” When it comes to your visa application, it’s important to plan well!

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