OS-HELP is a generous Australian Government Loan scheme that allows eligible Australian university students to access up to A$9,063 to study overseas (amounts as of January 2018). The OS-HELP loan is applied to the student’s HECS and standard conditions apply. Students should visit the Australian Government Study Assist website for more information about HECS-HELP and OS-HELP, or contact CISaustralia.

Recent changes to the way OS-HELP is being administered have been beneficial to Australian students.

Key elements of OS-HELP include:

  • OS-HELP is a loan available to eligible undergraduate and postgraduate students enrolled in a Commonwealth supported place who want to undertake some of their study overseas
  • Students can borrow up to $7,998 for studies within Asia, and an additional $1,065 if students undertake Asian language studies in preparation for studies in Asia
  • Students can borrow up to $6,665 for studies outside of Asia
  • Ultimately, the amount students can borrow using an OS-HELP loan is determined by their university in accordance with the OS-HELP policy
  • OS-HELP can be used for a range of expenses such as airfare, accommodation and other travel or study expenses
  • Students may receive one loan per six-month study period and can access a total of two OS-HELP loans over their lifetime
  • The type of overseas study for which you may be able to receive OS-HELP assistance could include semester, short-course study programs, clinical placements and internships

Eligibility Requirements

OS-HELP eligibility requirements can be updated from time to time by the Australian Government, so it is recommended students refer to the Study Assist website for a comprehensive guide to OS-HELP. Generally students would normally be eligible for OS-HELP if they meet the following requirements:

  • you are an Australian citizen or permanent humanitarian visa holder
  • you are enrolled with an Australian provider (university) as a Commonwealth supported student and have completed one equivalent full-time student load, which is usually one year of full-time study
  • you are enrolled in an undergraduate or postgraduate course with an Australian university
  • your overseas study counts towards your current enrolled course requirements
  • you will have one course of study left to complete (back in Australia) once you have finished your overseas study
  • you have a tax file number (TFN) or provide a ‘Certificate of Application for a TFN’

How to Apply

You must apply to your higher education provider for an OS-HELP loan. Each university runs its own application and selection process. Students should contact CISaustralia or their university’s International Office for more detailed information on OS-HELP.

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