Know your visa conditions

When travelling to Australia, you'll need to apply for a visa. A visa is official permission to enter a country.

Visa types

Your type of visa may depend on the country you are coming from and the course you intend to study. For information on the different visas available for Australia, you should view the Australian Government's Department of Home Affairs.

Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE)

In order to maintain a valid Student Visa, you must have a valid Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE). You will receive a CoE as part of your enrolment process before you leave your home country. If your CoE is ever cancelled due to a breach of University Rules or Requirements, this may lead to your Student Visa being cancelled or expiring.

Please note the University can’t provide advice on other types of visas or provide migration law advice.

Visa extension process

If you are applying to extend your student visa, you will first need to apply for a new electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCoE). This should be done within three months of your visa expiring. View the steps you need to take to apply for a Visa Extension [PDF 177KB].

Overstayed visa status

If your student visa has expired and you are residing in Australia without a valid visa, then you will be considered to have stayed in Australia unlawfully. View the steps you need to take on our Guide to Overstayed Visa Status [PDF 170KB] to understand your options.

Student Visa Conditions

Each visa type has its own conditions, or rules you need to follow. You must follow your visa conditions to ensure you satisfy the requirements of that visa type. Visa conditions are set by Australian law and your visa could be cancelled by the Department of Home Affairs if you breach these conditions. For a full list of student visa conditions go to the Australian Government - Student Visa information. Our Guide to Student Visa Conditions [PDF 200KB] highlights key conditions you should be aware of.

You must also be aware that the University has a legal obligation to provide information to the Department of Home Affairs in specific circumstances. For example, the University must inform the Department of Home Affairs if you are no longer studying; or the University may inform the Department of Home Affairs if you breach University rules.

While we can give you general advice about your student visa, we are not migration agents. If you have further questions, or need advice regarding non-student visas, or spousal visas, please contact the Department of Home Affairs.

Extending your course duration

If you have difficulties during your studies, you may require additional time to complete your program. This may occur if you:

  • fail a subject/s and need to retake the subject
  • have been granted a Reduced Study Load

You may then require an extension of program which will require an updated CoE. To request a new CoE go to AskMQ.

With the change in the duration of your study program, you may need to extend your student visa.

Maintain enrolment and course progression

You must remain enrolled in your course and satisfy course progression requirements. If you are at risk of not satisfying course progression requirements you will be contacted by the University and asked to take part in a program. The program is designed to help you improve your academic performance so we can help you reach your goals.

If you do not meet progress requirements, defined by the degree rules, you may be excluded from Macquarie University. Students who are excluded are able to appeal. Students who do not appeal, or who are not successful in their appeal, are reported to the Department of Immigration. This may result in the cancellation of your visa.

You should make sure you understand the undergraduate and postgraduate degree rules and Academic Progression information.

Changing address or contact details

You must notify Macquarie University within 7 days via eStudent:

  • of your new address when you first arrive in Australia
  • if you change your address at any time during your enrolment
  • of any new contact details

If you do not update your address details and there is a problem with your visa, you will not receive communication from the Department of Immigration and your visa may be cancelled without you knowing.

Macquarie University will contact students via their official Macquarie student email address. You should regularly check your student email for important updates and information as the University will not email your private email address.

Work limitation

See details on work limitations for international student visa holders.

Overseas student health cover

Find out more about Overseas student health cover (OSHC).

Change of welfare arrangements - under 18 years of age

If you are under 18 years of age and do not live with a parent or legal guardian in Australia, you must not change your accommodation, support and general welfare arrangements without consulting your U18 Student Administration Officer. Students Under 18 years of age must meet with an U18 Student Administration Officer every two weeks during their studies.

To contact an U18 Student Administration Officer, please submit an AskMQ enquiry with the subject line "U18 Student Administration Officer".

Other conditions to help maintain your student visa

Remain with Macquarie University for 6 months

You must study with Macquarie University for at least six calendar months if your visa was obtained for study at this institution. If you have come to study an English course (eg ELC), or a preparatory course (eg Macquarie University College Foundation program) on a package offer, you must complete this course and then continue your studies at Macquarie University for at least six calendar months.

Find out more about transfer and release conditions.

External or distance study

You can study up to one-third of your course online. You must study at least one unit that is face-to-face in each compulsory study period. The only exception is if you are completing the last unit of your program that is only available online. It is important that you check the teaching method when registering for units to make sure you meet this rule.

Suspending study (SoS)

A Suspension of Study (SoS) allows students who are experiencing compassionate or compelling circumstances to take a break from study and return to their home country. If approved to suspend your program, you are required to contact the Department of Home Affairs to ask about your student visa status.

View the  list of compelling or compassionate circumstances [PDF 151KB] that may be applicable to your situation. Depending on your circumstances you may need to get a RSL and Suspension Support Form [PDF 182KB] completed by your health professional to engage in this process.

To request permission for a suspension of studies go to AskMQ.

Apply for a withdrawal or release

Should you wish to withdraw your enrolment from Macquarie, you can submit a Student Withdrawal and Release form online via AskMQ.

Students who have studied with Macquarie University for more than six calendar months are able to stop their studies by notifying the University (using the above form). Students who have not studied for more than six calendar months must request permission to be released from their studies. A release will only be granted in exceptional and specific circumstances.

We've provided some information about applying for a withdrawal or release [PDF 178KB] to help you with this process.

Reducing your study load

Student visa holders are required to complete their course within a set period, indicated by your eCoE. The course duration is based on a full-time study load (a full time study load usually requires a student to take 4 subjects in each compulsory study period).

Visit Coursefinder for details about your course duration.

If you experience academic difficulties, or situations which are considered to be compassionate or compelling, then you may be eligible to reduce your study load. If you wish to request to reduce your study load submit a form via AskMQ.

Depending on your circumstances you may need to get a RSL and Suspension Support Form [PDF 182KB] completed by your health professional to engage in this process.

COVID-19 Update: Student Visa

The Government has announced a range of visa measures to support students. The measures will be temporary and will continue for as long as needed.

The measures taken by the government for the student visa impact the visa feethe visa eligibility for Temporary Graduate (Subclass 485), timeframes, temporary relaxation of working hours, among others. Please check the Home Affairs page for more information.