Postgraduate Research Sector visa (subclass 574)

Sunday 5 November 2023

Postgraduate Research Sector visa (subclass 574)

The Postgraduate Research Sector visa (subclass 574) is no longer available for new applications. It closed on 1 July 2016. If you need to extend your stay in Australia, you must now apply for a Student Visa (subclass 500).

Visa holders

If you have already been granted a Postgraduate Research Sector visa (subclass 574) or have applied for the visa on or before 30 June 2016 and a decision has not yet been made, this information is for you. It explains your rights and obligations.

To check your visa details and conditions, you can use the free Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) tool.

How long your visa lasts

If you already have a Postgraduate Research Sector visa (subclass 574), it will remain valid until the expiry date given when your visa was granted.

What this visa lets you do

With the Postgraduate Research Sector visa (subclass 574), you have the following privileges:

  • You can study in Australia.
  • Eligible dependent family members can accompany you to Australia.
  • Once you have commenced your masters by research or doctorate course of study in Australia, you can work unlimited hours.
  • Your family members can also work unlimited hours once you have commenced your masters by research or doctorate course of study in Australia. However, if you have commenced a preliminary course, such as an ELICOS course, you and your family members are restricted to working 40 hours per fortnight until you have started your masters or doctorate course of study in Australia.
  • Your partner can study in Australia for up to three months. If your family members who are 18 or older wish to study for more than three months, they must apply for their own student visa.



As a student, it is important to comply with your visa conditions while studying and living in Australia. Failure to do so may result in the cancellation of your visa. You must also comply with Australian laws.

If you wish to change to a course that is in a different education sector from your current course, such as changing from high school to a Diploma course, you will need to apply for a new Student Visa (subclass 500) as your current visa subclass will not be appropriate for the new course.

If you were granted your visa under streamlined visa processing (SVP), you must continue to fulfill the requirements for the grant of the visa. This means that if you seek to transfer to a different education provider who was not an eligible education provider before 1 July 2016, your visa could be considered for cancellation if it is within the first 12 months of being granted or if you are not from a country that was Assessment Level 1 before 1 July 2016.

You can check which conditions apply to your visa using the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) tool or by referring to your visa grant letter.

Changing your education provider

In addition to complying with your visa conditions, there are requirements under the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) National Code that apply if you wish to change your education provider.

If you have not completed six months of your principal course and you want to change your education provider, the ESOS National Code sets out the circumstances in which this will be possible. Generally, you will need the permission of your existing education provider to transfer to another education provider, unless special circumstances apply.

If you do wish to transfer, your education provider must assess or consider your request. All education providers must have documented procedures on their transfer policy. It is important to understand your education provider's transfer policy and the requirements outlined in your written agreement before attempting to enroll with a new education provider.

If your education provider does not give you permission to transfer and you are not satisfied with the outcome, you can access the internal appeal process with your education provider. If you are still not satisfied, you have the option to appeal the decision at an external complaints handling body, such as the State or Territory Ombudsman or the Overseas Student Ombudsman.

Students under 18 years of age

If you are under 18 years of age, you must ensure that you have adequate accommodation, support, and general welfare arrangements for the duration of your visa or until you turn 18.

If your welfare arrangements are approved by your education provider, you cannot travel to Australia until your welfare arrangements commence. The welfare start date is the date nominated by your education provider on the Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation/Welfare Arrangements (CAAW) letter.

If a student guardian is providing for your welfare arrangements and they need to leave Australia without you, you must make alternative welfare arrangements that are approved by the authorities. Failure to do so may result in the cancellation of your visa.

'No further stay' condition

Some visas are issued with a 'no further stay' condition. This means that you cannot apply to extend your stay in Australia beyond the date specified on your visa, except in certain circumstances.

Report changes in your circumstances

You must inform the authorities if your circumstances change. This includes changes such as a new residential address, a new passport, or any significant events in your family, such as pregnancy, birth, divorce, separation, marriage, de facto relationship, or death.

To report changes in your circumstances, you can use ImmiAccount if it is accessible to you. Otherwise, you can use the following forms:

  • Form 929 - Change of address and/or passport details - for changes in address or passport details.
  • Form 1022 - Notification of changes in circumstances - for other changes in your circumstances.

Family member

Dependent family members must also comply with their visa conditions. Failure to do so may result in the cancellation of your visa and the need to leave Australia.

Family members must:

  • Remain a member of your family for the duration of their stay in Australia.
  • Have adequate financial support.
  • Maintain adequate health cover.
  • Only work unlimited hours once the student starts their main course.
  • Attend school if they are of school age.

Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure that your family members meet the above conditions.

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