Visas and work permissions


It is your responsibility to ensure that your passport and student visa are valid while you are a student in Australia. From 1 July 2016, the Australian government introduced a new student visa assessment scheme.

A key part of this is the Genuine Temporary Entrance (GTE) assessment, which is designed to ensure that all students are bona fide students and have a genuine intention to return home at the end of their studies in Australia. The new changes have also resulted in some delays to visa processing, so we encourage you to apply for your student visa as soon as you receive your Confirmation of Enrolment (COE) so that you’ll be able to arrive on time to start your course with us.

Student Visa Application

Department of Home Affairs

Student visas for International students onshore in Australia are handled by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) office in Sydney.

Location: Upper Ground Entrance, 26 Lee Street, Sydney NSW 2000
Telephone: 131 881

Note: The office is readily accessible by bus or train and is located opposite the Mercure Hotel at Railway Square near Central Train Station. Appointments must be made before going into the Sydney office.

If payment is to be made to DHA, the preferred methods are credit card, bank cheque, EFTPOS or money order.

Frequently asked visa questions

Can I come to Australia on a tourist visa and change to student visa?

Visitors holding a temporary visa can apply for a student visa after their arrival in Australia if they come from countries with Assessment Level 1. Applicants from countries with Assessment Levels 2, 3 & 4 can only apply on-shore in exceptional circumstances.

What is the procedure for applying to extend my student visa in Australia?

If you are considering studying at the University of Wollongong for an additional session, consult the UOW Office of Global Student Mobility as soon as possible. You will need to apply to UOW to extend your stay, and your extension will also need to be officially approved in writing by your home university or program.
Once all relevant fees for your second session have been paid (including extension of your OSHC), an Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCoE) will be issued and you will be able to apply to DHA for a student visa extension.

To apply for a visa extension:
Refer to DHA Applying for a Student Visa website for further information.

Work permission

How do I get permission to do part-time work in Australia?

As a Study Abroad & Exchange student you will be studying on a student visa which automatically entitles you to work in Australia under certain conditions. Generally speaking, all Non-Award Student Visas are issued with permission to work – for up to 20 hours a week during sessions and unlimited hours out of session. If you are on a Working Holiday Visa please confirm any conditions with DHA.

Please refer to the DHA website for information on the limits of your work permission.

Can I get part-time work in Wollongong?

It is not easy to find part-time employment and you must not rely on the idea that you can cover your living costs or tuition fees by getting a job. You may not be able to find work related to your area of study. Some students find jobs in restaurants, shops and supermarkets - others get work doing tutoring, telephone sales, deliveries, etc.

Also the UOW Careers & Employability (formerly Careers Central) offers advice on job hunting.