New Fact Sheet – Overseas Student Attendance

Source: ASQA, Aug 2019

If you are delivering vocational education and training (VET) to students studying in Australia on a student visa (overseas students), you must comply with the requirements of the:

  • Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS Act)
  • National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018(National Code)
  • National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act 2011 (NVR Act), including the Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) 2015 (Standards for RTOs).

This fact sheet provides a summary of your responsibilities, as required by both the National Code and the Standards for RTOs, in relation to overseas student course progression and classroom attendance.

Overseas students are required to be enrolled in a full-time registered course to undertake the study. For VET courses, a full-time course is a minimum of 20 scheduled course contact hours per week, unless otherwise specified by ASQA.

Students are also expected to progress through their course so that they complete the course within the nominated course duration.

Key Points:

– All providers must have training and assessment strategies that include clear information about course duration and contact hours

– Amendments to course structure must be approved by ASQA before implementation

– All providers need to implement training and assessment practices that reflect their training and assessment strategies

– All providers must implement documented policies and processes to monitor student course progress

– Providers must take action if students are completing assessment without attending training

– Providers must develop appropriate written agreements with students as part of the enrolment process

– Providers need to inform students who are at risk of not progressing


If a student is not attending scheduled classes, in the first instance you should:

  • remind them that enrolment in a full-time registered course, which is a course with a minimum of 20 scheduled course contact hours, is a visa condition for overseas VET students
  • remind them of scheduled class times.

If a student fails to make satisfactory course progress (including by not participating in the training outlined in the training and assessment strategy and timetables), you must have and implement a process for reporting unsatisfactory course progress in PRISMS. You must:

  • have undertaken an intervention strategy to assist the student at risk of not meeting course progress, in sufficient time for the student to achieve satisfactory course progress
  • tell the student of the intention to report them and the reasons why you are reporting them
  • tell the student how they can access an internal complaints and appeals process
  • advise them on their external appeal rights.

For more information, visit ASQA’s information page for this topic.