Welcome back international students

You may have heard the Australian Government recently announced some changes to student visa conditions. We understand you might have questions regarding these changes, so we've put together some further information for you.

The changes

The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) announced that all universities must return to compliance with the Education Services for Overseas Students Act (ESOS) requirements by 30 June 2023.

Students holding a student visa must enrol in at least one in-person unit per study period and complete no less than two thirds of their study face-to-face. Both current and commencing international students should plan to join us in Sydney before the start of Session 2, 2023 (24 July 2023).

What does this mean for me?

I am onshore, hold a student visa and a COE

From 30 June 2023, you must ensure at least two thirds of your remaining course is studied in person, and you enrol in at least one in person unit in each study period.  These rules do not apply to any study completed between March 2020 and 30 June 2023.

If you have completed any study before March 2020 in person, this study would also count towards the two thirds in-person requirement.  This would include any unit completed in person (whilst at Macquarie) which is now a credit against your current course.

If you have only one unit left to complete in your course it may be studied online, provided the unit has an online offering available.

You are however, advised to contact the Department of Home Affairs about potential impacts this may have on your student visa and visa options for post-study work in Australia.

I am offshore and hold a student visa

The ESOS Framework applies to all overseas students studying a course at an Australian university who hold an Australian student visa, including those who are currently offshore (ie. not in Australia).

If you no longer wish to travel to Australia to complete your studies after 30 June 2023 you may change your enrolment status to offshore and online. However, this may impact your visa options for post-study work in Australia and your visa may be cancelled.  You are advised to contact the Department of Home Affairs about any potential impacts should you choose not to study in Australia after 30 June 2023

Please submit an AskMQ to advise us if you plan to remain offshore.

I am offshore and do not hold a student visa

If you are in an online course and have no intention of applying for a student visa you may continue to complete your course overseas.

If you have the intention of applying for a student visa you will not be able to undertake your course overseas, but instead will need to study on campus in Australia.

I have started my course overseas / I have started my course in Australia but am currently offshore

You must have a valid Student Visa in order to come to study in Australia. You will need to have a valid Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) to apply for a student visa.  If you need to request a CoE please submit your request via the AskMQ form. Please complete as early as possible to avoid delays.

The return to ESOS compliance applies from 30 June 2023.  You will need to be back on campus for the start of the relevant session, as follows:

  • Session 2 – 24 July 2023
  • Macquarie Business School Term 3 – 26 June 2023
  • Macquarie University College Term 3 – 29 May 2023

If you can’t make it back in time for the start of the study period, then you will need to apply for a Suspension of Studies.

All students

If you are seeking to take a break, reduce your study load or study more units in a study period, you will need to apply via the appropriate forms:

  • Suspension of studies to take a break due to compassionate or compelling circumstances
  • Reduced Study Load due to advice received and/or compassionate or compelling circumstances
  • Credit overload if you are wanting to study more than 4 units in Session 1 or 2 and more than 2 units in Session 3.