Are you an international student wanting to apply for Skilled Migration in Australia?

Zhanna Heenan

Visa News

If so, below there are a few tips that will help you be better prepared for this process.

The Heenan and Browne Visa and Migration team would like to congratulate all international students on return to their studies in 2016! We hope you had a fantastic break and will have a great year ahead!

For those who are in the final year of studies and are planning to apply for permanent residency in Australia after you complete your course, I would like to cover a number of important issues you will need to address in order to make a successful application for skilled migration to Australia.

English command

The English language is one of the main factors in passing the points test for Skilled Migration.

Some skills assessing bodies will also require you to demonstrate your English language ability.

Passport holders from countries such as Canada, Ireland, NZ, UK and US are exempt from demonstrating the English ability.

English evidence

Being accepted by most relevant bodies, International English Language System (IELTS) for many years has been the most popular choice of English test for students, workers and migrants in Australia however many applicants find the test quite challenging. If you are one of those people, you need to be aware that there are a few alternatives. OET, Pearson, Cambridge Academic and TOEFL tests of English are all also accepted by Immigration, however not all skills assessment authorities may accept these tests.

Preparation is the key to success

Even if you are a confident English user, we recommend you prepare for the test. A lot of confident English users were not able to obtain the required score simply because they were not familiar with the test format or due to stress or time pressure during the test.

Make sure you give yourself enough time to prepare for the test. The results usually take about 2 weeks (since the date of the test) to be released and for migration purposes are valid for 3 years.

University Paperwork: Graduate vs Complete

You don’t need to wait for your graduation to apply for skilled migration and in fact we don’t recommend that you wait as the processing of your visa application and the processing can take a long time. Why waste the time if you can apply as soon as your final results are released.

You will need to request the university to issue you a letter of course completion.

You will also need your final transcript. If you have been given advanced standing/recognition of prior studies/experience, you will need to obtain a letter explaining which units you received recognition for and whether these were a result of Australia or overseas study.

Skills assessment

Positive skills assessment required at the time of visa application

Positive skills assessment is a criteria without which you will not be successful with your Skilled Migration application for permanent residency. You need to obtain a positive skills assessment before you can apply.

The Graduate Temporary visa does not require you to have a positive skills assessment at the time of application. However you will need to be able to meet the “Australian Study” requirement (for the 485 visa, or to claim points for Australian study) that is a course/courses the duration of which was at least 2 academic years in Australia. To meet that requirement your course/s must be registered for at least 92 weeks on CRICOS.

Find the correct or the best pathway for you

It is important to understand what is required of you for a positive skills assessment. Requirements for each occupation differ and it’s also possible you could consider skills assessment in a number of different occupations to find the correct or the best pathway to your permanent residency. If you have any overseas qualifications, you might also consider having them assessed. It is good to get some advice on the best pathway to use.

Apply for skills assessment as soon as you can

Depending on skills assessment authority, your assessment report can take up to 3 months or more to obtain. We highly recommend you start your skills assessment as soon as you can.

Expression of Interest (EOI) Invitation through SkillSelect

You must be invited by SkillSelect to apply for general skilled migration. How soon you will get invited depends on your occupation and points score. It’s important that you get your strategy right from the start, otherwise, you may not receive an invitation at all!

Most importantly, applying for an EOI or being invited does not automatically grant you a visa. You still need to go through the visa application process and satisfy the time of application visa requirements in order to have a bridging visa granted which will allow you to stay in Australia lawfully. It is very important to make sure you are well aware of the process and the requirements and that you can address all the relevant issues before your student visa expires.

To be successful in applying for Skilled Migration, you have to be strategic and organised with your Australian migration pathway. If you are not sure which pathway to choose or need assistance with working out a plan for your permanent residency, as registered migration agents, we can help.

Please book an appointment with one of our agents. During your appointment you will receive an immigration advice giving you full details of the recommended pathways and what you need to do to maximise your chance of becoming an Australian Permanent Resident.



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