New Student Visa Change: From Genuine Temporary Entrant to Genuine Student Test

The Department of Home Affairs introduced a pivotal update to the student visa (subclass 500) requirements, shifting from the Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) to a new Genuine Student (GS) criterion.

As per the Migration Strategy unveiled in December 2023, the transition to the GS criterion for student visas was anticipated with the intended purpose of enhancing transparency of the application assessment process. This new test aims to give the applicants and assessors a more comprehensive view of the applicants’ intentions and circumstances regarding their decision to pursue education in Australia.

The forthcoming GS criterion will delve into:

  • Applicants’ backgrounds, including familial, community connections, employment, and financial situations.
  • Rationales behind course selection and choosing Australia as an educational destination.
  • The anticipated advantages of the chosen course for the applicant.
  • For those with prior Australian study experience, an overview of their academic journey.
  • Reasons for shifting to a student visa from another visa category.
  • Any additional information deemed relevant by the applicant.


This GS test is scheduled to take effect for student visa applications to be submitted from 23 March 2024. Applications lodged prior to this date will be evaluated under the current criteria. The GTE criterion will continue to apply to Student Guardian (subclass 590) visa applications.

Amendments will also be made to the student visa declaration, requiring applicants to affirm their understanding and commitment to the obligations of being a genuine student in Australia, acknowledge the conditions of the student visa, and recognize the limited opportunities for post-study permanent residency. In line with these updates, Ministerial Direction 69 will be annulled and substituted with two new directives, aligning with the GS requirement’s implementation post-March 23, 2024, and the continuation of the GTE assessment for pending applications as of this date.

For more detailed information approaching the GS criterion’s launch, the Department promises updates on their official website before March 23, 2024.


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