Jun 27, 2022

The Government is now allowing students who complete, or have completed any two-year vocational courses in the last 6 months, to apply for a 2-year Graduate visa.

The Albanese Labor Government has announced that international students who complete any 2 years vocational or trade diploma between January 2022 and June 2023 can apply for a Subclass 485 Graduate visa at the end of the course.

The Graduate visa allows you to live and work in Australia for at least a further 2 years.

This allows potentially hundreds of thousands of students who previously had no access to the Graduate visa to apply. The decision reflects the slightly panicked determination of the Australian Government to support Australian employers by allowing more international students who were in Australia at the time of the COVID-related border closure to remain living and working in Australia.

Despite Liberal Prime Minister Scott Morrison telling you to go home in April 2020 and offering no support, the pandemic has in fact created a fantastic opportunity to migrate to Australia for a generation of students. Despite recent uncertainties, the closure of the border and the ability to apply for a Subclass 408 work visa and now a Graduate visa gives you the opportunity to meet the legal requirements for a Skilled visa and migrate.

Mr Nicholas Houston talked to us more about this good news, watch the full video HERE.

Watch the Spanish version here.


  • To apply for a Graduate visa you must complete a 2-year vocational or trade diploma and apply for the visa before 30 June 2023. You can also apply if you finished your course in the last 6 months. This includes courses in business, aged care, community work, leadership, massage therapy or literally any subject study area. If your course consists of a series of nested certificates leading to a diploma you are eligible.
  • This window of opportunity for vocational studies students will run from 1 July 2022 until 30 June 2023.
  • Previously, to apply for a Graduate visa, you either needed to complete a 2-year university-level course or certain restricted vocational or trade courses like Chef or Carpentry related to an occupation on the Medium and Long Term Occupations List. This change does not affect this cohort’s ability to apply for a Graduate visa.
  • The Graduate visa gives you the opportunity to work for 2 years and apply for accreditation, state nomination, and a Skilled visa. It may also allow you to apply for an employer-sponsored Subclass 482 or 407 Training visa.

Seek migration advice

This change represents a fantastic opportunity for those who understand what they need to do to apply for a Skilled visa. You need to understand the accreditation rules for your occupation and whether you need to move interstate. This is not advice that can be given by an education agent.

Now is the time to seek professional migration advice and establish an effective visa strategy.

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VisAustralia is offered a $50 discount from the price of our normal assessment fee.

Special code: STUDENT

To arrange an appointment with one of our migration agents, click here.