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Future Directions for Streamlined Visa Processing

Future Directions for Streamlined Visa Processing - Universities Australia[if lte IE 7]> <link href="/UserUploadedStyles/ua.ie7.css" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" /> <![endif]


In the Strategic Review of the Student Visa Program 2011, Michael Knight made some recommendations, since implemented by government, to simplify and strengthen Australia’s student visa system. Key amongst these was the recommendation to introduce a system of Streamlined Visa Processing (SVP) for prospective students seeking to study at an Australian university. Michael Knight singled out universities for access to SVP outlining sound public policy reasons for treating the universities differently:

  • The universities are the spearhead of Australia's international reputation for education, and quality is high right across the entire Australian university sector.

  • High quality is preserved by keeping the number of institutions recognised as universities relatively small.

  • The university sector is very stable and Australian taxpayers have a huge financial stake in Australian universities.

  • Overall, university students have proven to be a relatively low risk from a migration integrity perspective.

The introduction of SVP to Australian universities was very welcome as it indicated to the world that Australia was focussed on the high quality end of the market and that we were “open for business”. It has allowed universities to compete internationally for the best students unhindered by lengthy visa processes. Further, it has enabled universities to better understand their students and markets and to introduce processes that result in improved outcomes for student retention and completion, ultimately producing greater financial benefits.


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