A breach of condition 8202 makes you vulnerable to a visa cancellation. A visa cancellation is going to make it just that bit more difficult for you to get another Australian visa. Don’t give yourself the extra trouble. Condition 8202 is mandatory for all student visas.

(1) You must remain enrolled in a registered course (unless you are a Foreign Affairs of Defence sponsored student or secondary exchange student in which case you must maintain full-time enrolment in your course of study or training).

Note: A registered course is one that is on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS).

(2) You must maintain enrolment in a registered course that is the same level as, or at a higher level than, the registered course for which you were granted a visa.

You must maintain (3) satisfactory attendance in your course and (4) course progress for each study period as required by your education provider.”

Condition 8202 was updated in the recent implementation of the SSVF. What do you need to know now?

(1) The first bit is pretty cut and dry. You must remain enrolled in your CRICOS course. If you are a defence student, foreign affairs student or secondary exchange student, you must remain full-time enrolment.

(2) Students are not allowed to drop to a lower Australian Qualification Framework (AQF) level  course. AFQ has assigned the following levels to qualifications:

Senior Secondary Certificate of Education (Year 12)
Level 1: Certificate I
Level 2: Certificate II
Level 3: Certificate III
Level 4: Certificate IV
Level 5: Diploma
Level 6: Advanced Diploma / Associate Degree
Level 7: Bachelor Degree
Level 8: Bachelor Honours Degree / Graduate Certificate / Graduate Diploma
Level 9: Masters Degree
Level 10: Doctoral Degree

If, for example, your visa was granted for your enrolment in a Master of Business degree (level 9) course and you wish to change your course to a Diploma of Management (level 5) course, you will need to apply for a wholly new student visa. Changing your course without obtaining a new visa associated with your lowered level course will result in your breach in condition 8202 and would result in the cancellation of your student visa. There is no bearing on the course subject, only the course level. Only those studying level 10 (Doctorate) courses are allowed to drop to level 9 (Masters) courses without consequence. Moving to a higher level is permitted.

Condition 8202 also does not worry about with education provider you are with. If you were doing your Master of Business with the University of Sydney and decided to do your course at the University of New South Wales instead, you will not be in breach of condition 8202. Just remember, same or higher AFQ level!

(3) (4) You must maintain satisfactory course progress and attendance . The onus of reporting a student’s unsatisfactory course progress and/or attendance is on the education provider. Education providers are also required to send students a written notice if they are in breach of condition 8202. It is therefore important to notify your education provider should there be any compelling reasons for flagging attendance or academic progress, preferably before any notice is given, of course.

Attendance for higher education (tertiary) students is not required to be monitored. ELICOS and school students are required to be reported should attendance dip below 80%, unless the student’s lack of attendance is due to compelling and compassionate reasons and that the student is still managing to attend 70% of the course. With VET (vocational education and training) and non-award students, education providers are to report students whose attendance falls below 80%, unless the student is maintaining satisfactory academic progress and is still above 70% attendance.

If a student were to apply for another visa whilst on their student visa and is granted a bridging visa, that bridging visa will only come into effect on the expiry of their student visa. The bridging visa does not override the student visa. As such condition 8202 will still be enforced until such time the student visa expires. If the student has not completed their course, they are required to continue to fulfil the conditions on their visa. If the student has no intention to continue their studies then they would be face a probable cancellation of their student visa, which in turn results in a cancellation of any bridging visa they may hold. The no-longer-student will need to apply for a bridging visa E .

If, for example, you have applied for a Skilled Independent 189 visa whilst on your student visa, and have managed to completed your course which you were granted your student visa for in a shorter duration than expected, you would remain on your student visa until it expires and will not be considered to be in breach of any student visa conditions as your course is completed. If however, for example, you have applied for a packaged diploma + degree course and you apply for a Skilled Independent 189 visa before you have completed all of your study, your student visa will still be in effect and you will still be subject to your student visa conditions. If you stop your study, you student visa may be cancelled.