Student FAQS - The Student Confidential
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Can I work while I Study?

Working while you study


Many students decide to find a part-time job in Australia to earn some extra money whilst studying to cover living expenses and to gain some valuable work experience. Part-time work in Australia is very well paid, earning over $20 an hour, which can help you to cover the cost of living while studying.

You can work up to 40 hours every two weeks while studying in Australia on a student visa. 

To work in Australia you must have a Tax File Number (TFN) and an Australian bank account is highly recommended.


Both International students working in Australia, as well as international students on a working holiday visa have basic work rights and entitlement – the same as any Australian citizen. These rights entitle you to;

  • a safe and healthy work environment
  • break and rest period
  • challenge of unfair dismissal from the job
  • a wage that meets the legal national minimum wage including any ‘award’ wages


If you feel you are being treated unfairly or unethically, make sure you contact Fairwork Ombusdman who provide free services to all workers in Australia.

How much does it cost to Study in Australia?

Study Costs


The costs of studying in Australia will vary depending on where you decide to study as well as the course you choose. Here is a sample of what you may expect in terms of the cost of fees at Australian Education institutions.


Below you can find a general guide of the range of costs you can expect to find, however these prices may vary.




School  $7,800 – $30,000
English Language Courses  $300 per week depending on course length
VET (Cert I to IV, Diploma and advanced diploma)  $4,000 to $22,000
Undergraduate bachelor degree  $15,000 to $33,000(Veterinary and medical degree courses are more expensive)
Postgraduate masters degree  $20,000 – $37,000
Doctoral Degree  $14,000 – $37,000

* These prices are from the study in Australia website, where you can search for individual courses and their respective costs. You can find more detailed information about course costs and syllabus content by visiting the official websites of education institutions.


In addition to the fees of your course, you will also need to make sure you meet the financial capacity requirements of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP). This financial requirement will ensure that you have enough money to support yourself and any accompanying family members while you’re in Australia. You will also need to have booked a return airfare for yourself and any accompanying family members.


As of July 1 2016, the 12 months living costs suggested by DIBP are;

  • Student/guardian AUD 19,830 (approx. $13,800 USD Or 12,900 euro Partner/spouse AUD 6,940)
  • Child AUD 2,970
What type of visa do I need to study in Australia?

What type of visa do I need to study in Australia?

If you want to study in Australia then you’ll need a visa, but the type of visa you need will depend on both the duration and type of study you intend to undertake.

If you want to study for a short time period of less than 3-4 months then a Visitor Visa or Working Holiday Visa may be right for you.  You may be able to get a working holiday visa if;

  • You are aged between 18-31
  • You have a passport from an eligible
  • You have no dependent children accompanying you

This visa will enable you to study up to four months and work for up to 6 months.

If you want to study for more than 3-4 months then you will most likely need a Student visa (subclass 500), which will enable you to study an English course, Vocational Course or University Course. A student visa allows you to stay in Australia and study full-time in a recognized education institution. You may be able to get a student visa if;

  • You have been accepted to study full-time in a registered course at an Australian education institution
  • You would like to study for more than 3 months in Australia
  • You would like to work part-time while studying
  • You are a Genuine temporary entrant
  • You have the English Language skills that meet your particular course requirement
  • You have adequate health insurance organized for your stay
  • You are able to finance your studies and have evidence of sufficient funds

On a student visa, you are able to work up to 40 hours every 2 weeks during term time, and full time during holidays. In Australia, part time jobs are highly paid with many types of jobs available to increase your skills set and help you earn some money to contribute to your living costs.

For more information about student visas, visit the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website or contact us.

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