You can apply for a permanent visa directly from your country or apply for a permanent visa after studying in Australia. In both cases you or your partner need to be under 45 years old, have a level of English sufficient to work in Australia, have qualifications and work experience in an occupation in demand in Australia, and pass the visa points test.
Whether you can apply directly or need to come to study in Australia first depends on a number of factors including your previous qualifications and work experience, your level of English, your age, and whether your pass the visa points test.
If you need to come to Australia to study you need to be careful to select a course that gives you the best chance of applying for a Skilled visa at the end of the course. Not all courses result in the ability to apply for a Skilled visa. Many students enrol in courses that do not facilitate a Skilled visa outcome.
These courses can end up costing you tens of thousands of dollars in school fees. You can waste many years of effort without achieving permanent residence in Australia.
To identify a highly rated course specific to your personal circumstances you need to arrange a consultation with a VisAustralia expert.
Gold Rated Courses are low cost 12-month courses that allow you to migrate after completing the course. You need to be accredited in an occupation in demand in Australia based on your existing overseas qualifications and work experience and meet state nomination policies at the end of your studies.
Silver Rated Courses are 2 or 3-year courses that allow you to apply for full accreditation at the end of the course and apply for state nomination or the Skilled visa directly. These courses may also allow you to apply for a Graduate visa.
Bronze Rated Courses are 2 or 3-year courses that allow you to apply for provisional accreditation and a Graduate visa at the end of your course. On working in your occupation in Australia for 12 months you can then apply for full accreditation, state nomination, and a Skilled visa.
If you are thinking about applying for permanent residency in Australia once your studies are over, living and studying in a regional area will give you a distinct advantage. Study in a regional area will grant you fifteen extra points in the points test for skilled migration visa applications.
In addition, Graduate visa holders (post-study work stream) who study in regional Australia and who live and work in regional Australia for two years are able to extend on their Graduate visa for one or two additional years. Regional Australia is anywhere that is not Brisbane, Melbourne, or Sydney.