Under Knight Review the Australian Government is implementing some significant changes to the International Student Visa Program. One of the important changes called Streamline Visa Processing has come into force from 24th March 2012.
During the review process universities and their associated institutions providing courses outside the university campus have been in close consultation with the visa officials.
What is streamline Visa Processing or SVP?
This means that students having offer letter from participating universities will be part of the streamlined visa process (SVP) which allows for speedy processing of visas.
Does it mean that every student who applies for admission will get visa easily?
No. Stream line Visa Processing requires a thorough assessment of students qualifying for studies in Australia. Every parameter of student visa requirement will be monitored much more closely by the student advisor or agent for the Australian Universities and the Australian universities itself.
What are new changes under Streamline Visa Processing?
Student visa applications lodged on or after March 24 with a Confirmation of Enrolment which is also known as COE from a participating Australian university for a degree OR Packaged by an approved institution to a degree at their participating partner university, will be assessed as though they were a lower migration risk (Similar to the current Assessment Level 1). This is regardless of student’s country of origin.
What is GTE or Genuine Temporary Entrant?
As the name suggests, direct PR or permanent residency for Australia is no more directly associated with getting PR after studies. Students are expected to be aware of this new situation and plan studies well. What this also implies is that student is a temporary entrant and he has genuine interest of studying in Australia. Being a GTE is the key while you plan to study in Australia.
What are the advantages of the Streamline Visa Processing?
• Fast Visa processing
• Fund proof not required by the Australian High Commission however student needs to have clearly arranged all the money required for visa as the same may be asked by the participating university or embassy during interview otherwise.
What are the disadvantages of the Streamline Visa Processing?
• Universities will assess student financial status, interest level and academic performance in Pakistan in details. This may lead to slow processing of the admission and student will need to work a lot at admission stage and be sure if s/he is really interested in studying in Australia.
• DIAC will be much more updated on student performance during studies. What this means is that if student is sick and not attending his or her classes they must intimate through right channel to the university to avoid any unwanted situation on immediate basis.
Can I go to Australia for higher studies with my spouse? Will it be considered as GTE under Streamline Visa Processing?
Yes, your spouse can apply for visa with your application however s/he also needs to be Genuine Temporary Entrant.
Does it mean that I cannot stay in Australia and I have to come back to Pakistan as soon as I complete my degree in Australia?
No, Student completing the degree studies at bachelor, Masters of PhD will be eligible for Post Study Work permit and they do not require any job offer for the same. Students are expected to work in their industry and if they get any kind of sponsorship they may be eligible to apply for permanent residency as well. However all this will depend on the visa regulations applicable at the time of application.
What are key areas of assessment under Streamline Visa Processing?
• Applicant’s circumstances in their home country – family background , financial and academic
• Applicant’s potential circumstances in Australia – has to be GTE
• Applicant’s course to the applicant’s future – Course has to be value of money and time spent in Australia
• Applicant’s immigration history – if student has travelled abroad before and has abided by the visa regulations