New Changes to Student and Graduate Visas in 2024

Posted on Jun 24, 2024 | by Nikolovski Lawyers

From 1 July 2024, there will be a host of changes to Australia’s student and graduate visa categories. Our expert immigration lawyer Karthiha Kailasanathan is on hand to help us understand them.

An Australian Student Visa (subclass 500) allows individuals to enter or remain in Australia to study. An Australian Graduate Visa (subclass 485) allows recent graduates in Australia to transition from their Student Visa into full-time work.

Whilst these visas generally provide migrants with the life-changing opportunity to obtain a world-class education and work experience, they are also prone to exploitation. Recent trends show instances of fraud, non-genuine study commitments, visa-hopping, and a failure to address economic skill shortages.

These patterns have led the government to tighten the criteria for student and graduate visas with the aim of improving integrity and allowing clearer pathways for skilled migrants.

From 1 July 2024, the following changes to student and graduate visas will take effect:

1. You can no longer lodge a Student Visa (subclass 500) application if you are already in Australia on a:

– Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485)

– Visitor Visa (subclasses 600, 601, 602, 651, 771)

– Maritime Crew Visa (subclass 988)

– Diplomatic Visa (subclasses 995, 403, 426)

2. The Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485) stream will be renamed to the Post-Vocational Education Work stream

– The age cap will decrease to 35 (at the time of lodgement).1

– The visa grant period will decrease to 18 months.1

– Applicants must have completed an associate degree, diploma, or trade qualifications related to an occupation on the Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL).

3. The Post-Study Work (subclass 485) stream will be renamed the Post-Higher Education Work stream

– The age cap will decrease to 35 (at the time of lodgement).1,2

– The visa grant period will decrease to 2 years for Bachelors/Masters graduates, and 3 years for Masters by Research and PhD graduates.1,3

4. The Second Post-Study Work (subclass 485) stream will be renamed the Second Post-Higher Education Work stream

5. The Replacement (subclass 485) stream will cease

Get in touch:

Currently studying in Australia or one day hoping to? Worried about how these changes might affect you? One call can make all the difference.

Our expert migration lawyers will provide you with tailored legal advice to help you navigate through your migration journey.

Call us at (02) 4227 6833, or email us at to arrange a consultation today.

1. Exceptions apply for Hong Kong and British National Overseas passport holders.

2. Exceptions apply for certain Masters/PhD graduates.

3. Exceptions apply for Indian nationals.

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