Introducing the new Simplified Student Visa Framework (SSVF)

From 1 July 2016,  the Simplified Student Visa Framework (SSVF) is expected to replace existing Streamlined Visa Processing (SVP) and the current Assessment Level (AL) framework. It is intended that there will be a reduction in the number of student visa sub-classes from eight to two.  The level of documentary evidence required in relation to financial and English language capacity will be guided by the combined immigration risk of the prospective student’s education provider and country of citizenship.

All Australian CRICOS providers will be allocated a risk rating based on immigration risk outcomes of their students over a 12 month period. The same risk allocation approach will be applied to each country. Differentiated streamlined evidentiary requirements will be allocated on a Provider/Country Risk Matrix. The risk rating of institutions will not be shared with the public or with agents due to commercial sensitivities and to discourage the targeting of education providers by non-genuine applicants.

The online student visa application will determine student evidentiary requirements; institutions with the lowest risk category will be treated similarly to existing SVP processing at Assessment Level 1.  A working sample of this online visa application tool will be made available by DIBP in late May.

The DIBP allocation of risk to institutions and the associated student visa benefits determined by a lower risk rating requires that Monash University maintain the current agent partnership approach taken under SVP. The agent network will continue to play an important role in managing immigration risk and in contributing to an institution’s risk rating.  To assist institutions in managing risk, visa data will be utilised for agent monitoring, benchmarking and reporting.

Key Notes for Agents

  • Current student visa processing arrangements will remain unchanged until the SSVF is implemented from 1 July 2016
  • SVP and the current country AL framework will be replaced by a simplified framework for all international students that will be based on institutional and country risk
  • The number of student visa sub classes will be reduced from eight to two
  • The post study work visa known as the Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485) is unaffected by the change
  • There are no changes in terms of agent obligations; as with SVP, agents must continue to undertake the necessary checks to ensure that they only submit applications from genuine students to Monash.
  • The risk rating of institutions will not be shared with the public or with agents and student evidentiary requirements relating to English & Financial capacity will be determined by DIBP via the online student visa tool.
  • Applicants are still expected to meet other requirements such as Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE), good character and health criteria
  • OFFSHORE based applicants will be required to apply for their student visa online.  The online application can only be commenced upon receipt of the eCOE
  • For a transitional period as directed by DIBP, all ONSHORE based applicants ie those resident and applying for a student visa from Australia may continue to commence their online visa application process with an offer letter.
  • The 12 month living evidentiary requirement is expected to increase to $19,830AUD
  • DIBP advises that they expect visa processing delays as a result of the SSVF transition.  Please do not hold onto visa applications!


For more information please visit the DIBP web site: https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Stud/changes-student-visa

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