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Student Transfer Procedures - International Students

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Section 1 - Preamble

(1) Standard 7 of the revised ESOS National Code 2007 requires that international students on student visas must remain enrolled with their original education provider until they have completed six months of study in their principal course. This restriction also applies to any preliminary courses prior to the principal course.

(2) Limited grounds are permitted for transfer within the six month period. All students can transfer without restriction after completing six months study in their principal course. That requirement would normally be satisfied by completing one compulsory semester, or two compulsory trimesters study with the University.

(3) This document provides information about the principles and procedures the University applies to international student transfers. These procedures are to be read in conjunction with, and use the same definitions as used in, the University rules relating to awards.

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Section 2 - Procedures

Part A - Enrolling Transfer Students

(4) The University will not encourage or enrol a student wishing to transfer from another provider prior to the student completing six months of their principal course of study except where:

  1. the original registered provider has ceased to be registered or the program in which the student is enrolled has ceased to be registered;
  2. the original registered provider has provided a written letter of release;
  3. the original registered provider has had a sanction imposed on its registration by the Australian Government or state or territory government that prevents the student from continuing his or her principal program, or
  4. any government sponsor of the student considers the change to be in the student's best interest and has provided written support for that change.

(5) An International Admissions Officer will investigate all applications from international students already studying in Australia on a student visa to account for the time spent in Australia to ensure there has been proper disclosure of previous studies with Australian providers. If it becomes apparent that information is not complete and it is determined that an applicant could be enrolled with another provider the Letter of Offer should state that enrolment will be conditional on production of a Letter of Release from their current provider.

(6) If on receipt of an Acceptance of Offer an International Admissions Officer is alerted by PRISMS (Commonwealth Provider Registration and International Student Management System), while in the process of raising a Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE), that a student is enrolled at another provider the International Admissions Officer should not proceed with the enrolment and notify the applicant in writing that the enrolment will only be able to proceed if the student can provide a Letter of Release from the relevant provider.

(7) The International Admissions Officer responsible for processing the application should ensure that a copy of the Letter of Release is obtained before enrolling the student and also ensure a copy is retained on the students file.

Part B - Student Transfer Requests

(8) International Students who have accepted an offer from the University and have been granted a CoE and wish to transfer to another provider prior to completing six months of their principal course must make application to the Director, International Office for a Letter of Release. The application can be lodged with, and the Director, International Office will be advised by, the relevant campus International Office Student Adviser.

(9) An application for a letter of release must be made in writing and include:

  1. a written letter advising the reasons for the request to transfer to another provider.
  2. any documents that support the veracity of the reasons for making the request,
  3. a copy of an unconditional offer letter from the other provider,
  4. if the student is under 18, written advice from the students parent or guardian approving the transfer,
  5. if the student is under 18, and not in the care of a parent or guardian, the letter of offer must confirm the other provider will accept responsibility for approving the students accommodation, support and general welfare arrangements,
  6. if the student is on scholarship, written advice from the sponsoring organisation approving the transfer.

(10) Failure to provide the documentation required with the application can constitute grounds for the University to refuse the request.

(11) A student who applies for a Letter of Release must meet with an International Office Student Adviser to discuss the reasons for their application and to review all options to resolve any problems or issues the student may have that are impacting on the decision to pursue a transfer.

(12) The International Office Student Adviser will make a determination and recommendation to the Director, International Office as to the veracity and reasonableness of the student's grounds for making the application.

Part C - Outcome of Application

(13) The Director, International Office will make a determination in relation to the application for a Letter of Release in accordance with the procedures outlined in this document.

(14) Students will be given a written response by the International Office detailing the outcome of their application within 10 working days of the date the written request is received.

(15) In considering a request for a Letter of Release the Director, International Office must form the view that the transfer is not to the detriment of the student, or that there are compelling and compassionate circumstances which should be taken into account, for the request to be agreed to.

(16) Circumstances which may be considered detrimental to the student and thereby warrant refusal include, but are not limited to:

  1. it is determined that the student is trying to avoid being reported to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) for failure to meet the University's requirements, or
  2. the student has not met with a course adviser to review the reasons for making the application for release and possible options,
  3. the transfer may jeopardise the student's progression through a package of courses or future study plans,
  4. where the student does not identify plausible benefits which will accrue from the transfer to offset the cost and dislocation to the student of the transfer,
  5. the student has recently started studying the course and the full range of support services are yet to be provided or offered to the student,
  6. the proposed transfer is demonstrably unlikely to deliver the career, migration, qualification, or work outcomes the student aims to achieve.

(17) A Letter of Release will only be provided to a student claiming financial hardship where the student can reasonably demonstrate deterioration in their financial position from that which prevailed at the time the student accepted the offer of enrolment from the University.

(18) A Letter of Release will only be provided to a student claiming a failure by the institution to meet expectations and/or claims of being mislead by agent representations where the student can provide evidence of being misled. All students are advised in the Letter of Offer package to refer to the University's website before accepting the offer as information provided from other sources and relied on in choosing the University can be verified from there.

(19) Students whose application for a Letter of Release is approved will be advised in writing and informed of the requirement to contact DIAC as soon as possible, as a new visa may be required. The International Student Adviser will cancel the students CoE on PRISMS within 14 days of the student ceasing study with the University. No fee will be charged for issuing the Letter of Release. A refund of fees, if any, will be assessed and made in accordance with the University's fee refund policy.

(20) Where an application is refused the University's response will detail the reason for the refusal. The written reasons should note the decision, the reasons for the decision, the factors taken into consideration and reflect the student's individual circumstances. The reasons for refusal should be sufficiently detailed to enable the student to make an informed decision as to whether to appeal the decision.

(21) The student will also be given advice in writing that it is possible to appeal the decision if the student so chooses and referred to the University's Complaints and Grievances Procedures.

(22) International Student Advisers must ensure that requests for Letters of Release, any associated correspondence, and details of the outcome are retained on the students file. A note must also be made on the student's record on the Filemaker International Admissions database, in the comments section, to the effect of "Letter of Release applied for" and the date it was received.