Risk rating the hidden side of student visas

There is a hidden side of student visas that most applicants will never see but effects every application; and that is the risk ratings. There are two risk ratings that are never published but are taken into account when a student visa application is submitted. There is a rating calculated for every school that can give an offer to international students and for the home country of international students.

Put simply this risk is measured based on the historical data of how many international students from a school or country have broken the rules of their visa. Lower risk cases are asked to provide fewer documents with their visa application. A single, low risk applicant is only asked for their CoE, passport, OSHC and GTE to be included with their application, while a higher risk applicant can expect to also be asked for financial documents, police check, English test results and possibly more.

Some agents might advise a student to apply for a lower risk school to get a visa then change schools after they arrive but this is terrible advice. Lower risk schools are aware that some people are trying to use them to get into Australia but more importantly coming to Australia with the plan to switch schools after arrival. This method of gaining a student visa can put you in danger of losing your current visa or being refused on a future visa application, not just student applications but any category of application. Only a bad education agent will advise you to come to Australia and then change schools.

Rather than worrying about the risk rating of your chosen school or your home country it is better simply to be prepared with all the documents listed by your migration agent. Your migration agent can also tell you what documents are needed, and what should be prepared but is not a requirement upon visa submission. The reason for this preparedness is that the Department of Home Affairs can request documents or interviews while a visa is being processed, and reject an application based on the further documents/interview provided. Therefore, it is better to simply have them ready from the start, before your submission. It is important to keep in mind, that the Department of Home Affairs, often looks into your onshore visa history/activities and your GTE statement whil processing your application and this can be the decider if they request more documents.

As we have mentioned before, in our other posts, the GTE statement is the most important part of a student visa application so it is critical that your statement reflects your intention and your plans for your stay/study in Australia. Often students and applicants hurt their own chances by rushing/incorrectly expressing themselves/omitting critical bits of information that would impact the decision of your visa case officer. To get the details of how to write a proper Genuine Temporary Entrant Statement; please contact our AMET Education Migration Services.